Core Artist Ensemble is currently accepting script submissions for our upcoming 2018 Summer Readings Series. This season, we are fully embracing the resurgence of audio storytelling by focusing on that form as our primary medium.
We are excited to begin development of an anthology-style podcast, which will feature a new audio play every episode. Each story will explore the influence that technology has on our relationships and individual identities — the rapidly shifting and evolving shape of human connection as a consequence of modern advancements.
The Yale Drama Series is seeking submissions for its 2019 playwriting competition. The winning play will be selected by the series' current judge, Ayad Akhtar. The winner of this annual competition will be awarded the David Charles Horn Prize of $10,000, publication of his/her manuscript by Yale University Press, and a staged reading at Lincoln Center's Claire Tow Theater. The prize and publication are contingent on the playwright's agreeing to the terms of the publishing agreement.
Funhouse is recurring play anthology inspired by The Twilight Zone, Black Mirror, Saturday Night Live, and Adult Swim. It is a collection of subversive and experimental original content. Each show is comprised of a series of short plays that, when viewed together, give audiences an experience similar to that of walking through a funhouse. As soon as you think you know what’s coming next, the room starts spinning and the floor falls out from under you. Our show serves as a rotating platform for diverse up-and-coming playwrights, directors, actors, and designers. The creators of Funhouse want artists to take bold risks in their storytelling.
*** FOR MORE INFORMATION about these and other opportunities see http://www.nycplaywrights.org ***
*** HOW THEATER HELPS ***
Artists Are Using Theater to Raise Awareness About India's HIV Crisis
A recent performance in Delhi aims to start a dialogue about the disease.
India has the third largest HIV population in the world, and awareness about the disease is still relatively low. On May 18, on HIV Vaccination Awareness Day, organizations like International AIDS Vaccine Initiative (IAVI), Delhi Dance Theater, PULSE, and I Am Positive India came together in Delhi and hosted a performance called I am + : Dance Theater on HIV India.
The directors for the performance flew in from New York City, while some performers were chosen from the Delhi Dance Theatre.
Held at the LTG Auditorium, the performance featured characters such as a man who contracts HIV and is ostracized by society, and a doctor who has a powerful impact on an HIV patient. The performance was preceded by an art exhibition at the same venue.
How Theatre Helped With My Social Anxiety
I suffer from anxiety, and have for many years now in my day to day life. Mental illness is a very real thing that so many suffer from, and it doesn't just take a stroll in the park to get rid of it, at least not for everyone. For me anxiety has been a setback but I have also learned how to cope with this and still live my life despite it without any medication. I'm lucky in that way because many can't say the same, but it doesn't mean my anxiety isn't still awful. I suffer from social anxiety really bad, many of my friends and theatre family members wouldn't say this about me but I am an introverted person. I'm loud and outgoing where I'm comfortable but when meeting new people or in large groups of people I am quiet and shy and I try not to draw too much attention unless it calls for that.
How Theatre Taught Me Empathy
Theatre gave me a lot of things. It was a place where my weird mannerisms and silly voices became unique tools. Performing also got me to break out of my shell and stop fearing what others thought of me, which, in turn, helped me learn to accept and be myself. But most of all, theatre taught me how to empathize with others better.
What I Learned from Writing a Play About My Transition
In Draw the Circle, now playing at the Rattlestick Playwrights Theatre in New York, playwright Mashuq Mushtaq Deen tells the story of his transition by taking on the voices of his family and friends. Over the course of 90 minutes, Deen performs the central characters of his life—including his Muslim mother and father, and lesbian-identified partner—as they struggle to accept his gender identity. Deen never performs as himself; his body is instead represented by a white chair, the only object that appears on the otherwise empty stage. It’s a funny, emotionally charged and deeply vulnerable work, in which Deen explores not only his familial and romantic conflicts but the violence and trauma he’s endured.
Milcah Lalam: Theater helped people heal from trauma in South Sudan
When Milcah Lalam pursued theater studies in college, she always thought of the art form as something more than just entertainment.
“I was looking for the value that it may hold in transforming communities,” said Lalam, who has worked with people suffering from trauma in South Sudan. “You reach not only the mind but also the heart with theater.”
Lalam was inspired to help people understand and recover from trauma in part because she suffered a tragedy as a child when her father and sister were killed in a car accident.
Encouraged by the success of using the arts to educate people in Uganda about HIV/AIDS, Lalam began using a model called “playback theater” to help people understand and heal from their trauma.
Theater is therapy for kids with hearing loss
As a teacher, Christie had been helping them learn to speak -- and listen. Theater, she realized, brought a noticeable improvement in their oral language skills and self-esteem.
"When you have characters in costume and they're all with all their friends who had a hearing loss, they felt like they belonged," Christie said. "I remember just looking at the audience a lot and seeing parents just weep. They're just so happy to see that their child can do this."
How theatre helped African asylum seekers explain their plight to Israelis
In Israel, African asylum seekers are used to having their fate hotly debated in the media and by politicians, some of whom accuse them of coming to steal jobs. But with the help of Israeli actors, a group of asylum seekers have been able to tell their own stories, in their own words, on the theatre stage – and show Israeli audiences the difficulties they face.
While Israel has signed the UN Refugee Convention, it is almost impossible for the approximately 40,000 Eritrean and Sudanese migrants to get refugee status. Over the past nine years, Israel has approved only 0.09 percent of all asylum requests. The rest live in a legal limbo. They are granted temporary visas that they must frequently renew, or they risk being sent to prison. These visas clearly state that they are not allowed to work in Israel, but the authorities do not enforce this. Most work low-paid jobs in restaurant kitchens or hotel cleaning.
Theater: The last piece of the puzzle?
William Shakespeare once posed this question for his admirers: “If all the world’s a stage, when are we truly ourselves?” The fact is, theater has allowed me to discover my true self— to NOT just go through life “reading from a script.” I am a 24 year-old person with autism and Tourette’s who has been involved in musical theater for almost 17 years. It opened the door to a new world of infinite possibilities from the moment I had the courage to step through that door as a little boy.
This is a path I never would have taken if it wasn’t for the encouragement of my first grade teacher. At that time, I was repeatedly mimicking the voices and lines of characters that I had previously seen on TV or in movies and plays. Because I would do these voices in the classroom, it became disruptive for my peers in their learning process; it also cast a negative spotlight on me.
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