Monday, November 19, 2012

A One Minute Music Monday

For today's Music Monday (as master of the PF blog) I, Kevin, decided to do a fun little game that relates somewhat to the upcoming 3rd Annual Ome-Minute Play Festival San Francisco. Yes, that annual festival of 70 or so great plays in a little over an hour. Each a one-minute masterpiece by some of the greatest playwrights in the Bay Area.

This year's festival will feature plays from Joan Holden, Christopher Chen, Anthony Clarvoe, Lauren Gunderson, Aaron Loeb, Chinaka Hodge, J.C. Lee, and 30 other Bay Area Writers.

So, for today's Music Monday I set down, set the timer on my phone for one minute, and wrote down all the songs I could think of. Sadly, I only thought of twelve. Here I am, thinking I can create a huge list and I only create twelve. Try it yourself, see what you come up with. It's really interesting the songs I came up with. Maybe it subconsciously says something about me. But I don't know. Anyway, enjoy!

For more information, visit

Tickets for this year's One Minute Play Festival are on sale NOW. Get tickets here

Monday, November 12, 2012

Music Monday: Sunset Baby

Image from
In preparation for Dominique Morisseau's Sunset Baby Rough Reading today and tomorrow we honor it with it's own music monday, with music that the PF staff has chosen that we feel fits the play.

Music is a big part of Sunset Baby. After all, according to Dominique the main character is named after Nina Simone. The last four songs on this playlist are even incorporated into the play.

In Dominique's blog about her play, she said one of her inspirations was Tupac Shakur. She says of Tupac: "this is most important.  He would've been in his forties now were he not a victim of gun violence in 1996.  I was always moved by his deeply thoughtful yet contradictory music.  One minute he'd be an intelligent orator breaking down the poverty-mentality of a lost generation, and the next he'd be the contributor to a violent generational abyss. How can my generation be so brilliant and so self-destructive at the same time?"

We hope our musical choices have faithfully represented this incredible play.


Sunset Baby will be part of our Rough Reading Nov. 12th at Stanford and 13th at the ACT Costume Shop in SF. It is 100% FREE of charge. A $20 donation in advance comes with a reserved seat and a drink!

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Black Power Babies

By Dominique Morisseau

My play, SUNSET BABY, began as an experiment that Jose Rivera gave to me and my fellow writers in the 2011 Emerging Writers Group at the Public Theater.  He asked us to write a quick and fast play in ten minutes, and gave us all of these creative elements to storm the play with.  It included an orange rolling on the stage.  Someone eating food.  A ton of things that are not at all included in this play.  But what I did was write a quick scene between a father and a daughter who were estranged and had agreed to meet in a restaurant.  Daughter was giving the Dad a hard time.  This ended up being what SUNSET BABY is bulit on.  This dinner date that never happened.

That was the spark that got me writing this play. But once I discovered what I was writing, the inspiration to SUNSET BABY changed.  These few important things are what became my driving inspiration:  1- a picture my father took of me as a little girl (the picture described in the play is it), 2 - all of the Black activists throughout time that have shaped the world in which I live, and 3 - Tupac Shakur - one of the most complex and brilliant hip hop artists there ever was. 

Monday, November 5, 2012

Oskar Eustis on Hurricane Sandy

Recently we were forwarded a special message that was released from Oskar Eustis of The Public Theater in NYC about Hurricane Sandy and we felt it necessary to share with you here. This is the message as we received it in it's entirety. Please read and share with your friends and family.

Dear Friends,

Hurricane Sandy dealt our entire region a huge blow this past week, and it will require effort and collaboration from all of us to support those who are suffering the most. I know your thoughts, like mine, are with those of our citizens in the Rockaways and Hoboken, in Staten Island and New Jersey, who are still without power, heat, or homes.

For the next few weeks, we will be using our home at The Public Theater at Astor Place as a collection site for material aid to help those without homes and those in need of immediate assistance. We're told that water is most urgently needed, in addition to, work gloves, batteries, flashlights, face masks, thick black garbage bags, tarps, cleaning fluids and supplies, band-aids, Advil, Tylenol, baby wipes and diapers. If you bring your items to The Public, either on your way to work, to a show or any other time during the day, we will make sure your much-needed contributions are distributed quickly and efficiently. A collection bin is located right in our main lobby.

Music Monday: The Randy Man

Randy, PF Managing Producer
For today's Music Monday, we look inside Playwrights Foundation to our Managing Producer, Randy Symank. Randy has been with us for a while now and here we give you a small look in. Here's what Randy had to say about work and music at Playwrights Foundation.

As the Managing Producer of Playwrights Foundation I'm responsible for overseeing and managing our programs and fundraising. As I move from task-to-task and project-to-project, I rely on music to keep me motivated and energized throughout the day. 

What you'll find here is a cross-section of songs from a variety of my Spotify playlists that I'm currently listening too. Whether I'm finalizing spaces for our Rough Readings, confirming schedules with playwrights to teach in our New Play Institute, or managing the staff and production team during our Bay Area Playwrights Festival, I can always find a song that fits the mood and tasks for the day. Hip Hop, Electronica, and Rock are good when there a variety of tasks that I need to work through. If I'm editing marketing materials or crafting a proposal for a program, Classical Music allows me to zone out and lose myself in the writing.


Thursday, November 1, 2012

To "Wright" Plays

by Lauren Gunderson

In preparation for Lauren Gunderson's upcoming PlayMath Class at the PF New Play Institute, we invited her to explain her class and what she loves about teaching it in her own wonderful words.

I love leading PlayMath classes because I'm a nerd for theatre. God I love plays. Don't you? I love them. I love talking about them, arguing about them, imagining them. I love the feelings I discover watching them in the hands of great actors, I love the surprising poetry that beams forth from the page, the pulsing silences earned by great directors, and I love digging deep into the structure of plays to figure out how the damn things work.

And it's the working that we convene to explore together from the greats and from each other in class. It's the working that makes us playwrights. The "wright" in playwright comes from the archaic English word "to work". A wright is a craftsman, a builder, a maker of new things. We gather to learn how to wright plays, not just write them.