Sunday, August 30, 2015

Local Events



For more than forty years, the University of Iowa Department of Theatre Arts has presented an annual festival centered on producing, reading, and analyzing new scripts from the Iowa Playwrights Workshop. Iowa New Play Festival 2014 will take place at the UI Theatre Building May 5-10. Preparing eleven new plays and presenting them in a single week is a monumental undertaking that is only possible through the utilization of UI Department of Theatre Arts’ wide-ranging resources in acting, directing, design, dramaturgy, stage management, and technical support. Through staged readings, workshops, and productions, Festival showcases the process of new play development.

New Play Festival 2014 will include four full productions, one workshop, and six readings. The full schedule is below. Additional details about each performance are available on the Theatre website at<>

Reading Series: Phoebe
By Sean David DeMers
2:00 p.m. (Cosmo Catalano Acting Studio, Room 172)

Phoebe is a modern update of the Phaedra myth that explores the unspeakable, the unacceptable, and the unconscionable in love and war.

Phoebe contains adult language, adult themes, and descriptive violence.

Production: Four Stories
By Micah Ariel James
Directed by Nina Morrison
5:30 p.m. and 9:00 p.m. (Theatre B)
Sibling shopkeepers apprehend an intruder on the last day of the old year.
A couple hosts a breakfast party on the first day of the new year.
Two old friends reunite to watch the fireworks on the last day of the old year.
Four strangers contemplate the justice of justice on the first day of the new year.

Four Stories contains haze, loud noises, and potential use of strobe lighting effects.


Reading Series: #julys
By Sam Lahne
Directed by Annie Levitz
2:00 p.m. (Cosmo Catalano Acting Studio, Room 172)

#julys is an off-kilter farce that examines anti-Semitism, identity, and the internet through the eyes of Avram, a troubled 16-year-old who builds a community through an anti-Semitic conspiracy website/social forum, but finds his life spiraling out of control as his offline and online worlds converge.
#julys contains the use of strong language and adult themes.

Production: and i will hold you/when you are broken By Lisa Flora Meyers Directed by Mario El Caponi Mendoza
5:30 p.m. and 9:00 p.m. (David Thayer Theatre) When the possibility of losing the ones you love is highly probable, how does one embrace memory? After a series of natural disasters, two people cling to hope embracing even the smallest moments of magic in the world. In this new play, playwright Lisa Flora Meyers and director and multimedia designer Mario El Caponi Mendoza explore the steadfastness of love even in times of great suffering.
and i will hold you/when you are broken contains adult themes.


Reading Series: Still Quiet
By Emily Dendinger
2:00 p.m. (Cosmo Catalano Acting Studio, Room 172) Ex-priest Michael is dying and has come to see his ex-girlfriend Beth to request her help in writing his obituary letter. However, as a tornado rages outside and strange happenings start to occur, Beth and Michael begin to question whether everything is as it seems.

Workshop: Life of the Experiment
By Sarah Cho
Directed by David Freeman
5:30 p.m. and 9:00 p.m. (Cosmo Catalano Acting Studio, Room 172)

Life of the Experiment is a science-fiction drama about the ethical issues involved in the medicinal treatment of cancer. In 3037, five individuals are each diagnosed with cancer and agree to participate in a clinical trial where they undergo physical and emotional stress in the hope of finding a cure. The play is an exploration of modern cancer treatments and the practices involved in the trials of new medicine.
Life of the Experiment contains mature language and adult themes.


Reading Series: Falls for Jodie
By Eric Holmes
2:00 p.m. (Cosmo Catalano Acting Studio, Room 172) Before his attempted assassination of President Ronald Reagan, John Hinckley visits the Yale campus to meet his child star crush who only a bellman can help him find.
Falls for Jodie contains adult language, some discussion of violence, and racial content.

Production: Swordplay
By Ryan Oliviera
Directed by Marina Johnson
5:30 p.m. and 9:00 p.m. (Theatre B)
A young woman tries to re-connect with her boyfriend by playing Swords and Stones (an online role-playing game), only to discover their growing disconnections to each other.  When his video game temptations turn to real-world disasters, she must re-connect with herself and beat the real world and the video game on her own merit…and with a little help from a new friend. Swordplay takes place in the digital and real world. Which is more real? How are our relationships informed by our digital and personal interactions? Is reality broken?
Swordplay contains choreographed violence, adult language and sexually explicit content. Not suitable for younger audience members.


Reading Series: Suit of Leaves
By Sam Collier
Directed by Nina Morrison

2:00 p.m. (Cosmo Catalano Acting Studio, Room 172) Glitch travels the borders between genders, times, and landscapes, searching for a home in a mythic America where deals turn sour, seeds turn to diamonds, and apples turn to hearts.

Production: Speed of Light
By Bella Poynton
Directed by Ariel Francoeur
5:30 p.m. and 9:00 p.m. (David Thayer Theatre) While the System is being invaded by an alien race, Mayra Ecazin, a brilliant physicist, has discovered the mystery of traveling at the speed of light. The race to get the machine made, however, proves more difficult than anticipated. While Kantis, a nearby planet and home to Mayra’s best friend Valki fights for survival, Mayra herself struggles to stay alive—as the very phenomenon that allowed for her discovery may also be her undoing. The clock is ticking, and all involved are working as fast as possible—but is it fast enough?
Speed of Light contains some adult themes, including fictional drug use.

Reading Series: Undergraduate Playwrights
2:00 p.m. (Cosmo Catalano Acting Studio, Room 172) Six selected undergraduate playwrights will showcase their ten-minute plays (or excerpts of plays) as staged readings. Details available online at

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