Pipeline Artistic Director Named Rising Star

On Wednesday, July 19, our very own artistic director, Ari Schrier, was named one of New York’s 40 under 40 rising stars in the nonprofit sector. This is the third consecutive year that New York Nonprofit Media has recognized and celebrated the rising generation of leaders across the New York nonprofit world. Ari was recognized at an honoree breakfast this week alongside this year’s other awardees, including leaders from Planned Parenthood of New York City, the Simon Wiesenthal Center, Girl Scouts of Greater New York, Brooklyn Academy of Music, and others. Click here to learn more about the event and access the full list of 2017 honorees.

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Introducing the PlayLab Class of 2018

The Pipeline PlayLab, a year-long series of monthly meetings and events, provides a developmental space for playwrights to turn their biggest, wildest ideas into finished plays. Through an extensive application process, we seek out big dreamers who are taking big risks with their plays, we put them all in a room together, we provide structure and support, and we make magic together.

This year, the Pipeline artistic team received applications from over 200 playwrights. We then selected 7 outstanding artists to be in residence with us through June 2018. It is with great admiration and excitement that we now introduce our fifth PlayLab class:

BurkhardtRICK BURKHARDT
Five Hundred

Rick Burkhardt writes and performs plays, songs, and chamber music, often lumped together into odd works for talking drummers and singing newscasters.

About the Project: Five Hundred is a play whose characters may speak only 500 words each, then fall silent forever — a play on economy, equality, and wild workarounds. Learn More

 

 

ChristopherJ. JULIAN CHRISTOPHER
Bundle of Sticks

J. Julian Christopher is an internationally produced playwright exploring Queer subculture and otherness.

Julian is returning for a second consecutive year in the PlayLab, and will be serving this season as a mentor to other playwrights in the group.

About the Project: Gay men from across the globe go deep into the outback of Australia for a secret gay conversion therapy retreat, only to be tormented by Ungud, the Aboriginal God of erections. Learn More

 

Gijsbers Van WijkAMY GIJSBERS VAN WIJK
feminine octagon

Amy Gijsbers van Wijk is a playwright whose work features all bodies, pronouns, and identities. She thinks of theatre as an art of reclaiming the self.

About the Project: “Do you ever think about becoming a body in the trunk of a car?” feminine octagon feasts on the banal, and the bizarre, the need, and the danger underneath it. Learn More

 

 

KraminsenJAE KRAMISEN
Earth is Greedy

Jae Kramisen is an internationally produced playwright who specializes in experimental drama that utilizes language, sound and light to create a visceral theater experience.

About the Project: A little girl is haunted by a demonic form of the moon, survivors flee to the woods as the cities fall, and the moon has disappeared from the sky. Who can you trust when everything is on fire? Learn More

 

 

LooneyK.T. LOONEY
House of Telescopes

K.T. Looney is a New York City based theater artist fascinated with the strange and familiar.

About the Project: House of Telescopes asks how magic works in a rural American town caught between ideologies. Learn More

 

 

MangwaniDIVYA MANGWANI
The Rise of River

Divya Mangwani wanders around in search of stories. Following cute dogs is just part of the job.

About the Project: A fish is in search of a God. Faith is commanded by Godmen. Art is breaking down. As the river Indus rises and falls, so does the world around it. Learn More

 

 

MinnicinoMATT MINNICINO
wyrd

Matt Minnicino is a playwright, director, actor, and teacher who would rather extend belief than suspend disbelief.

About the Project: A play about three sisters who aren’t sisters, a city consumed by fear, magic, love, dead gods, fathomless power, why everyone thought 2016 was so awful (but 2017 is worse), and the gaping maw of Hell. Learn More

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This play is unapologetic in it’s Queerness.

image1 (6)The Pipeline reading premiere of J. Julian Christopher’s Bruise & Thorn is coming to the Bonfire Series on June 25, 7:30PM. In advance of the reading, we learned a little bit more from Julian about what makes this his most ambitious project yet.

Read on to find out more and reserve your seat now for Bruise & Thorn, June 25, 7:30PM, Jefferson Market Library (425 6th Ave, NYC).

Pipeline Theatre Company: What do you want us to know about your play?

J. Julian Christopher: Actually, not much. I usually prefer audiences to walk into my plays without much knowledge. This allows for a more visceral experience without trying to “get it.” I think all I would want them to know is that the play is very New York and innately Queer. I use the word Queer, not to be divisive or exclusionary, but to name that this play is unapologetic in it’s Queerness.

PTC: When and where did you decide to start writing this play? Why?

JJC: Bruise & Thorn was a result of a writing exercise at a free playwriting workshop given at SoHo Rep led by Gregory Moss. We were asked to write a few small scenes based on the title a fellow writer in the room created. I was given the title Never Call a Black Woman Sassy. Out of these scenes, I created three characters that are still in the play today, but now as a different genders and race. Clearly, I ditched the other writer’s title.

I continued writing the play because it was the first time I began creating celebratory Queer characters. Previously, my Queer characters were riddled with shame, so when these characters popped out, I was excited. It feels like an evolution in my work and in my own identity. This play has given me joy, but also fear. I’ve known Queer shame for so long and I know how to write it well, because I’ve lived it. Bruise & Thorn frightens me a bit because in many ways it feels like a barometer for how I presently view my Queerness. I’m living Queer joy right now, but will it translate to the stage? It’s a common fear with every new play, but because there is a shift in tone from my previous work, it scares the shit out of me.

PTC: What excites you most about this project?

JJC: This is my most ambitious play yet. I’m most excited about writing the outrageous and eventually seeing how directors and designers are inspired by the piece. Bruise & Thorn is ripe for abstract staging and design possibilities. I am excited for the theatricality of the piece because there are moments of the play that seem impossible. But that’s the beauty of it… The collaboration of the theatrics… That gets me going.

PTC: In one sentence, tell us something strange that happens in your play.

JJC: Chickens have a ball culture vogue off in the basement of a laundromat.

PTC: Are you working on anything else?

JJC: I’m working on a few projects — Walker Mercado Saved My Life and Bundle of Sticks. They are mostly in early development, so I actually have no idea what they are yet except that they are going to be Queer AF!

PTC: What’s next for you?

JJC: I am directing a new play by Georgina Escobar called The Beacons at INTAR Theatre this June. It will be partially devised which I am extremely excited about. I’ve been really interested in how collaborative devised theatre can influence a narrative. Much of my work, directing and playwriting is moving into the realm of devising.

About Bruise & Thorn

by J. Julian Christopher | directed by Lou Moreno
Sunday, June 25, 7:30PM
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Bruise and Thorn work at a laundromat in Jamaica, Queens. Bruise dreams of becoming a chef and Thorn of changing the face of Hip Hop. When finances become strained, they get caught up in illegal activities sending them on a magical ride to make their dreams come true and get the hell out of Jamaica.

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Thinking about spooky things

unnamedThe Pipeline reading premiere of Charly Evon Simposon’s Trick of the Light is coming to the Bonfire Series on June 24, 7:30PM. In advance of the reading, we learned from Charly about how the project got it’s start and the strange and wonderful ways it’s grown and changed over the years.

Read on to find out more and reserve your seat now for Trick of the Light, June 24, 7:30PM, Jefferson Market Library (425 6th Ave, NYC).

Pipeline Theatre Company: What do you want us to know about your play?

Charly Evon Simpson: This is a play about a young woman who comes home looking for some time and quiet so she can think. What she gets instead is a yelling-from-the-porch mother, a tarot-card-pulling aunt, three ghost-like-figures that feel way more familiar than they should. This is a play about family, about memory, about rituals, and about place.

PTC: When and where did you decide to start writing this play? Why?

CES: This play actually started on a Fresh Ground Pepper BRB retreat. I was in the woods and while I kind of liked the woods—I’m an annoying person now who likes to go “upstate” and “hike” and stay in cabins in the “woods” but I wasn’t then—I was also really spooked by the woods. So I was there, in the woods kind of, thinking about spooky things, and I started this play. That was almost three years ago now. It merged with another project I started in grad school that started with some research I did for a class on various rituals and myths surrounding death and my own experience with a tarot card reading. I realized they were the same story. I realized the characters I had created were a family.

I’ve written quite a few drafts of this play over the last three years. Some said I should have abandoned it, but I kept coming back. I keep coming back. And I’m glad I did and do. There is something here and I’ve been trying to unearth it. Aurora, the main character, is trying to unearth something too. Perhaps that is why I am so attracted to this story and this world—we, Aurora and I, have been on a journey to figure out this world together.

PTC: What excites you most about this project?

CES: Honestly, this play has been so damn challenging and so damn interesting for me and in many ways, that is where the excitement comes from. I’m also really excited that it is a play that centers around six women and otherworldliness and fear and a lost dog and death and birth and…It is a play that touches on a number of themes I’ve been wanting to play with. I’m excited to see how its grown, how the world has grown, how I’m closer and closer to what I want it to be. I’m excited by its imperfections. I’m excited by its weirdness. I’m excited by its quiet.

PTC: In one sentence, tell us something strange that happens in your play.

CES: There are two ghost-like little girls who hang out above the stage a lot.

PTC: Are you working on anything else? What?

CES: I am having a reading of my play, Scratching the Surface, with The New Group ten days before this reading so June is a month of workshopping plays. I’m also finishing up an adaptation of the fairy tale, Girl With No Hands, for kids.

PTC: What’s next for you?

CES: I’m a member of SPACE on Ryder Farm’s The Working Farm so I’ll be working on a new play with them and this July I am headed to the Kennedy Center in D.C. to work on my play, Jump, at the MFA Playwrights Workshop. I also get to spent a few days in Iceland this August so that’s cool.

About Trick of the Light

by Charly Evon Simpson | directed by Dina Vovsi
Saturday, June 24, 7:30PM
Reserve Tickets

Aurora returns to her childhood home for some quiet, but soon realizes something is amiss. Her mother spends nights yelling on the porch and her aunt pulls the same tarot card every day. Not to mention the three mysterious, banshee figures she sees.

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The material manifestation of wonder

Pazniokas Square 2The Pipeline reading premiere of Francesca Pazniokas’ Wunderkammer is coming to the Bonfire Series on June 23, 7:30PM. In advance of the reading, we learned from Francesca about how this play, titled for a “cabinet of curiosities,” was originally inspired by a literal jar of moles. What does that mean? Read on to find out and reserve your seat now for Wunderkammer, June 23, 7:30PM, Jefferson Market Library (425 6th Ave, NYC).

Pipeline Theatre Company: What do you want us to know about your play?

Francesca Pazniokas: I’ll define the title for you. A “Wunderkammer” is a “cabinet of curiosities.” These collections “created a spectacle in which terror, curiosity and revelation could be relived through the discovery of new items and the relationships between them. The material manifestation of wonder” (Tiffany Shafran, Archives of Wonder).

PTC: When and where did you decide to start writing this play? Why?

FP: Wunderkammer is based off a short play I wrote when I was living in London for graduate school. It was Holocaust Remembrance Day, and I took a lunch break from the library and walked over to the Grant Museum of Zoology. As soon as you walk in, there’s this jar of moles. Just a big jar filled to the brim with dead moles, which I couldn’t stop staring at, even though it upset me. There was something in the combination of what day it was and all the taxidermy animals that gave me this idea. I wanted to write about dehumanization, about categorizing someone as “human” or “animal.” About how easy it is to deny someone’s humanity if it benefits you. 

PTC: What excites you most about this project?

FP: The chance to try and make something spectacular and strange! The logic of this play is inspired by the Eastern European folktales and folk songs I grew up with—stories that can be simple and scary and strange and sweet by turns. I remember being a kid and asking, like: “Why is that hedgehog trying to marry a human princess? Why did that swan get kidnapped?” When you’re young, you don’t understand that these stories are meant to impart a higher, moral message—they just feel so unsettling, like the world has a dark logic that’s beyond your grasp. I wanted to try to recreate that feeling for adults. I also got to write some folk songs, which I’d missed doing.

PTC: In one sentence, tell us something strange that happens in your play.

FP: A dead dog cries before someone’s hands get stolen.

PTC: Are you working on anything else?

FP: I wrote my thesis on verbatim theatre, but I don’t often get a chance to work on those kinds of projects (except for the short play I did for the Matchstick Series, when I interviewed 5-year-olds about their dreams—thanks Pipeline!). So I’ve started doing interviews for a new piece. I could tell you right now what I think it’ll be about, but I promise I’d be wrong. This is the fun part—looking for things that spark my interest and letting them lead me. It’s my favorite part of playwriting in general. 

PTC: What’s next for you?

FP: I have a short play about white feminism going up at the Prism Festival this June. I’m also working on a project with Everyday Inferno about murder ballads, which I’m looking forward to developing with them in the coming months. 

About Wunderkammer

by Francesca Pazniokas | directed by Felicia Lobo
Friday, June 23, 7:30PM
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A lonely taxidermist trains a mysterious child with terrifying talents to be his assistant in Wunderkammer—a play that blurs the line between human and animal, and life and death. It asks: how do we determine who is an “us” and who is “them”?

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Three descend into the dark web

Hemphill SquareThe Pipeline reading premiere of Aeneas Sagar Hemphill’s The Troll King is coming to the Bonfire Series on June 21, 7:30PM. In advance of the reading, we learned a bit more from Aeneas about the seeds of inspiration for this project, which include gender, sexualization, toxic masculinity, and gaming culture.

Learn more in our interview below and reserve your seat now for The Troll King, June 21, 7:30PM, Jefferson Market Library (425 6th Ave, NYC).

Pipeline Theatre Company: What do you want us to know about your play?

Aeneas Sagar Hemphill: People will probably come at this with “can I enjoy this if I’m not a gamer?” and I want people to know that this is not just a gamer play, or a play about video games per se. This is a play about gender, sexualization, toxic masculinity, about white male radicalization. I think there’s a tendency to consider games and gaming culture frivolous, or to at least distance ourselves from it as some sort of strange inscrutable subculture. But as our world blends with technology the lines have intersected and blurred in fascinating ways. Geek culture began as a safe space for people who didn’t fit into a dominant homogenous and patriarchal social order. There’s overlap with POC and LGBTQ culture, with underground music culture, with other social movements, though there has always been a gender dynamic based in what I call a Revenge of the Nerds narrative: the Girl thinks she wants an Alpha Male and can’t see the true value of the Nerd, who must win the Girl’s heart by publicly emasculating the Alpha Male with his intellect. This has developed into an ideology which, combined with an Ayn Randian libertarianism, creates this bizarre anti-feminism. Our most recent image of gaming culture involved coordinated online harassment and death threats against women in the gaming industry, which have serious implications in our current political landscape. So while this does try to reflect to some degree a gamer world—a world of which I grew up in and do not have these toxic beliefs—but this is not only relevant to the gaming community.

PTC: When and where did you decide to start writing this play? Why?

ASH: There’s this pseudo-philosophy on Reddit called the “Red Pill.” It’s an anti-feminist mythology of victimization that justifies itself with a cursory understanding of evolutionary theory. They were a major player in the #Gamergate debacle (which also helped make the career of Milo Yiannopoulos and other “Alt-Right” we know today). I’d recommend looking into it, as well as the responses from gaming publications like Gamasutra, who wrote a particularly assertive article headlined ‘Gamers are over,’ which disowned the #Gamergate “movement.” All across our culture we’re wrestling with oppression that’s baked into our language and our behaviors and our institutions, and it’s no different in the gamer community. I found the story of a group that began as a reaction to patriarchy, became a tool of patriarchy itself. I think this connects with how we view heroes and villains in society, and I wanted to delve into that complexity with a world that could be fun and that we don’t often get to see represented on stage with humanity.

PTC: What excites you most about this project?

ASH: I get to deal with really heavy themes with a sort of crudeness I wouldn’t otherwise. It’s liberating to be so frank about teenagers, and with theatre you can really bend reality. I wanted the real world to feel almost more unreal than the online and gaming worlds, which for many I think is a relatable experience. It also allowed me the freedom to place the events in a global context, which the internet constantly does.

PTC: In one sentence, tell us something strange that happens in your play.

ASH: Three descend into the Dark Web.

PTC: Are you working on anything else?

ASH: I have a bunch of stuff coming down the…pipeline. There’s a farce with spies and lacanian theory, a play based on the life of Rabindranath Tagore, Bengali poet, novelist, essayist, playwright and first non-European to win the Nobel Prize for Literature, an epic tragedy inspired by the black radical movements of the 60’s and 70’s, two pilots, a romantic comedy about Indian diaspora…I will be very busy.

PTC: What’s next for you?

ASH: Live. Create. Take over the world. 😉

About The Troll King

by Aeneas Sagar Hemphill | directed by Emily Moler
Wednesday, June 21, 7:30PM
Reserve Tickets

For many, the internet is a safe haven but it can also be something more sinister. When a young gamer’s love goes unrequited, a breach of trust rocks the student body and fantasy and reality collide.

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People are magical and resilient and survive

Edelhart SquareThe Pipeline reading premiere of Taylor Edelhart’s The Holdfolk is coming to the Bonfire Series on June 22, 7:30PM. In advance of the reading, we learned a bit more from Taylor about how this project came to be, other projects they have in the works, and making plays for trans audiences first and cis audiences second.

Learn more in our interview below and reserve your seat now for The Holdfolk, June 22, 7:30PM, Jefferson Market Library (425 6th Ave, NYC).

Pipeline Theatre Company: What do you want us to know about your play?

Taylor Edelhart: It’s about elves! Elves who live underground and are a secret now because humanity has taken almost everything from them. For me, it’s a exploration of how oppression works, and how oppressed people integrate new people into their communities, especially when they don’t really want to bring any new people in, but they have to. I’m also deeply invested in creating work that doesn’t put dialogue first as a communication tool, and this piece is a great example of that. There is some talking, but The Holdfolk communicate telepathically, so most of the piece is told through gesture and ritual. But for you, I just hope that it’s a meaningful story about elves. :)

PTC: When and where did you decide to start writing this play? Why?

TE: I got the idea for this play about a year ago. One of my favorite podcasts, LORE, did an episode that was partially about the huldufolk, the elves from Icelandic folklore that the play is based on. It really struck me how similar the huldufolk story was to experiences I’ve had as a trans person in the present day US – this phenomenon of saying “this group of people is both a menace and also doesn’t exist stop talking about them” was in both the huldufolk myth and all the bigoted thinking around those bathroom bills. This strange assumption that the Holdfolk live in rocks because they want to and not because they have to vs. trans people are oppressed because they decide to be and not because cis people actively oppress them. So I started writing to explore all those feelings the podcast brought up, and to see if I could make a sort of dark tale about what it’s like to be trans in America – to have your history erased, to have your livelihood stolen, to be driven underground – through a community of these elves. And since then, the play has deepened (I hope) into a story about how lots of different oppressions work, and how people are magical and resilient and survive in spite of all of that oppression.

PTC: What excites you most about this project?

TE: This is the first time I’ve made a gesture-based play for a bunch of people who aren’t myself, and it’s been really exciting to see how other actors tackle a text like that, and how I can make this scripted movement writing style more legible and fun for other people. I’m also deeply invested right now in making work that is for trans audiences first and cis audiences second, and think this piece has the potential to serve trans folks who see it in a big way. I hope so, anyway!

PTC: In one sentence, tell us something strange that happens in your play.

TE: A Holdfolk speaks using a Translator that looks like a big ugly calculator and doesn’t CARE aboUt WORD emPHASIS.

PTC: Are you working on anything else?

TE: Oh goodness yes! I just finished the first run of my latest solo piece, SWIFT, which is a sci-fi play about how I might actually be Taylor Swift, so that piece might be happening again soon. And I’m planning to put together a little play subscription service from a score of plays I’m planning on writing in the next year. Head to tayloredelhart.com/contact to sign up for my mailing list if you want to stay in the loop on all of that!

PTC: What’s next for you?

TE: I’m going to Lambda Literary’s Emerging Writers Retreat for playwriting this August, and am going to write in a cabin in the woods for 2 weeks as part of the Hill House residency this fall. In general, my plan is to tackle the list of 30 play ideas I have on my phone and just write as many of them as I can until I get tired and/or bored. There’s a play about a cursed house. There’s a clown future dystopia of the King Arthur legend. There’s a radio drama about an intergalactic phone sex line. I’m so excited for all of them! Yay plays! Also I’m getting a cat soon which I honestly think is going to do wonders for my artistic practice. Yes. So excited. Yay.

About The Holdfolk

by Talyor Edelhart | directed by Jaki Bradley
Thursday, June 22, 7:30PM
Jefferson Market Library | 425 6th Ave
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Deep underneath the earth, a family of elves has pieced together something like a peaceful life. Then a Human shows up. A broken fairy story about learning how to live underground.

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Mostly an excuse to make duck puns

Ditty SquareThe Pipeline reading premiere of A.J. Ditty’s Heart of Duckness is coming to the Bonfire Series on June 20, 7:30PM. In advance of the reading, we learned a bit more from A.J. about the seeds of inspiration for this project, namely the Berlin Conference of 1884, the unspeakable cruelty of ducks, and puns. Lots of puns.

Learn more in our interview below and reserve your seat now for Heart of Duckness, June 20, 7:30PM, Jefferson Market Library (425 6th Ave, NYC).

Pipeline Theatre Company: What do you want us to know about your play?

A.J. Ditty: Heart of Duckness tells the story of the Berlin Conference of 1884, where all of the major powers of Europe gathered together, took a map of Africa, and divided it amongst themselves as they saw fit. But every character is a duck. And we’re all corkscrewed.

PTC: When and where did you decide to start writing this play? Why?

AD: When I first graduated from college, my good friend A.P. Andrews approached me about writing for an evening of one-acts he was producing that all revolved around the prop of a map. I was ridiculously excited by the prospect (it was my first post-grad gig, after all) and eagerly ran home to write. I sat down at my desk, cracked a can of Dr. Pepper, opened Final Draft, and suddenly realized I didn’t know ANYTHING about maps. My director at the time (Kevin Hourigan who, in a delightful twist of fate, is also the director of this Duckness reading) sent me one of those lists of “Obscure Facts You Might Not Know About Maps” as a sort of springboard for inspiration, and, lo and behold, one of those obscure facts was that the map of modern Africa as we know it was primarily created during this ONE meeting in Germany in the 1800s where absolutely no representative from the continent itself was present.

WHICH IS JUST LIKE WHAT?!

I didn’t end up using it for that show (it just felt like too big a topic to cover in a half-hour), but the Berlin Conference of 1884 continued to nag at me over the next few years. Just the ARROGANCE of it, you know? Like, oh yeah, we’re going to literally reshape the very structure of the world just because we FEEL like it.

It drove me NUTS.

But I didn’t feel interested in writing a stuffy historical drama where a bunch of old white dudes sat around a table discussing amendments to articles and the minutiae of trade deals. So I pushed the project aside and focused on other things, resigned that it was just one of those plays that I would never be quite able to crack.

And then I came across a video called “True Facts About The Duck”. You can find it here: https://www.youtube.com/watch? v=6k01DIVDJlY

No, go watch it. Seriously, I’ll be here when you get back.

….

Ready?

Did…did you watch it?

WASN’T IT AMAZING?!

Before I saw that video, I never realized that ducks were such horrible, unspeakable monsters. I mean, these are creatures so prone to rape that their genitalia LITERALLY EVOLVED TO COUNTERACT IT.

And, suddenly, I knew how to do this play.

Because I truly do believe that what those delegates did at that conference was nothing less than the unadulterated rape of Africa.

So, I just reverted them to their inner animal.

And I’ve somehow ended up with a play that is simultaneously a farce, an historical drama, and, above all else, a play that explores the darkest impulses of humanity.

So, essentially, a play about ducks.

PTC: What excites you most about this project?

AD: The duck puns. I’d be lying if I didn’t say this project wasn’t mostly an excuse to make duck puns. If you’re looking for a show filled with duck puns, well, this play certainly fits the BILL.

…I’m sorry.

Also, King Leopold II of Belgium is one of the greatest monsters the world’s ever known, a tyrannical megalomaniac who seems to have been lost to the annals of history. But the man killed nine million Congolese and his contemporaries praised him as a humanitarian. Like, WHAT.

Any opportunity to take a man like that and bring him down a peg is always exhilarating to me and writing for him has been one of the great pleasures and terrors of my life.

PTC: In one sentence, tell us something strange that happens in your play.

AD: There may or may not be more than one instance of full-frontal duck nudity.

PTC: Are you working on anything else?

AD: I’m currently developing a musical with Insomnium Theatre Company tentatively titled Suburban Nightmare, which tells the story of a werewolf in love, and is essentially what would happen if Rodgers and Hammerstein and Meatloaf joined forces to write a musical about night terrors.

I’m also working on a play called Munichtown, which is an adaptation of the Glöckenspiel at the Rathaus in Munich (SO. MUCH. GERMANY.). It’s got ghosts, demons, and 20-something ex-pat tour guides all navigating modern-day Munich, trying to find meaning in a world slowly drifting closer and closer to the apocalypse. I’m super excited about it, as it stands to be my first three-act play! Also, I have no idea what I’m doing, please send help.

PTC: What’s next for you?

AD: Well, when I’m not staring at my screen trying to turn my brain scribblings into coherent thoughts, I act as the Narrator in Puffs, or, Seven Increasingly Eventful Years at a Certain School of Magic and Magic. It’s a story set at a certain magic school around the same time as a certain famous book series takes place, but from the perspective of one of the other school houses, namely, the Puffs. We’re playing Off-Broadway at the moment and it is just one of my favorite things in the world to be able to go on stage in front of a large group of strangers and pretend to be a wizard for an hour and a half.

I’m also planning to go to Six Flags to overcome my life-long fear of both roller coasters and that creepy old man who dances in their commercials. That man is TERROR INCARNATE.

Go to ajditty.com for all your ajditty.com needs!

About Heart of Duckness

by A.J. Ditty | directed by Kevin Hourigan
June 20, 7:30PM
Jefferson Market Library | 425 6th Ave
Make a Reservation

It’s the Berlin Conference of 1884 and the world stands on the brink of war as delegates from every European nation gather to find a peaceful solution to the monstrous scramble for Africa. But every character is a duck. And we’re all corkscrewed.

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Introducing the 2017 Bonfire Series

The Bonfire Series, our annual play reading festival, is the culminating event of our PlayLab playwrights’ group. Through the PlayLab, we endeavor to support playwrights in turning their biggest, wildest ideas into finished scripts.

This year’s series features talking ducks, a fantasy king, Icelandic elves, singing taxidermy, furies, and, of course, magical chickens. View the full line-up below!

June 20 – 25, 7:30PM
Jefferson Market Library | 425 6th Ave, NYC
Suggested Donation: $10

HEART OF DUCKNESS
by A.J. Ditty | directed by Kevin Hourigan
Tuesday, June 20, 7:30PM

It’s the Berlin Conference of 1884 and the world stands on the brink of war as delegates from every European nation gather to find a peaceful solution to the monstrous scramble for Africa. But every character is a duck. And we’re all corkscrewed.

THE TROLL KING
by Aeneas Sagar Hemphill | directed by Emily Moler
Wednesday, June 21, 7:30PM

For many, the internet is a safe haven—but it can also be something more sinister. When a young gamer’s love goes unrequited, a breach of trust rocks the student body and fantasy and reality collide.

THE HOLDFOLK
by Taylor Edelhart | directed by Jaki Bradley
Thursday, June 22, 7:30PM

Deep underneath the earth, a family of elves has pieced together something like a peaceful life. Then a Human shows up. A broken fairy story about learning how to live underground.

WUNDERKAMMER
by Francesca Pazniokas | directed by Felicia Lobo
Friday, June 23, 7:30PM

A lonely taxidermist trains a mysterious child with terrifying talents to be his assistant in Wunderkammer—a play that blurs the line between human and animal, and life and death. It asks: how do we determine who is an “us” and who is “them”?

TRICK OF THE LIGHT
by Charly Evon Simpson | directed by Dina Vovsi
Saturday, June 24, 7:30PM

Aurora returns to her childhood home for some quiet, but soon realizes something is amiss. Her mother spends nights yelling on the porch and her aunt pulls the same tarot card every day. Not to mention the three mysterious, banshee figures she sees.

BRUISE & THORN
by J. Julian Christopher | directed by Lou Moreno
Sunday, June 25, 7:30PM

Bruise and Thorn work at a laundromat in Jamaica, Queens. Bruise dreams of becoming a chef and Thorn of changing the face of Hip Hop. When finances become strained, they get caught up in illegal activities sending them on a magical ride to make their dreams come true and get the hell out of Jamaica.

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Memorial Day: Playing Hot is BACK!

This Memorial Day, an old favorite is comin’ on back. Join us for a one-day-only jazz-concert-picnic-reading of Jaki Bradley and Kevin Armento’s PLAYING HOT.

Set within a brassy dance hall, PLAYING HOT deconstructs the incredible story of the birth of jazz in New Orleans. Retracing the rise and fall of Buddy Bolden, the little-known trumpeter who pioneered the radical sound that would become America’s Art Form, the show is neither biography nor period piece, neither play nor musical, but an explosive and innovative theatrical event in the style of jazz. With the help of a live brass band, Buddy’s legend and infectious songs are conjured to life, riffing on history and pop culture the same way his music riffed on the notes on the page.

Almost exactly one year ago, we presented a one-night only party version of the show, and this Memorial Day we’re bringing you a concert reading at the Target Community Garden in Bed-Stuy. Join us at 2PM, bring that picnic blanket and basket along with you. This is a community event, presented to the public free of charge. RSVP Now.

13344653_1032543033461596_9018441759733136629_nPhoto by Marcus Middleton from our 2016 production of Playing Hot.

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