Meet the 2024 Voices of Women Theatre Festival Sponsor ChangemakHERS

 
 

2024 VOICES OF WOMEN THEATRE FESTIVAL

Celebrating 11 local, national, and international womens’ voices.

After receiving submissions from all over the world, Powerstories Theatre is proud to present the fourth annual Voices of Women Theatre Festival, showcasing twelve local, national, and international playwrights to a global audience. The festival is a combination of 60-minute and 10-minute plays.

The festival runs from March 21 through March 30, 2024; however, guests can enjoy the first week’s shows live at the theatre, and beginning the second week, guests can watch both the digital submissions and the recorded live shows beginning on March 25, 2024.

Powerstories will be hosting a Kickoff Celebration of the Voices of Women Theatre Festival for theatre attendees, playwrights, cast, and crew to talk about their play. The special event will provide drinks, light appetizers, Women’s History trivia, and camaraderie to launch its fourth annual Voices of Women event on March 21 at 6-730 PM.

Although there is a general admission ticket with ticket checkout, please wait for your email from Ticketleap.

For the digital performances, you will receive an email on Sunday, March 24 with a link to enjoy your shows.

2024 selected plays are:

THURSDAY, MARCH 21

10-minute Self-Produced

  • I’m (Not) Okay by Kimberly Schwartz (Florida)
  • High Occupancy Detour by Karen Campion (Florida)
  • Rose by Janet Scaglione (Florida)
  • Color Theory by Aurora Peugh (Florida)

60-minute Powerstories-Produced

FRIDAY, MARCH 22

  • Too Woke Too Book by Krystle Dellihue (Michigan)

SATURDAY, MARCH 23

  • The Wives; A Post-Roe American Abortion Odyssey by Alli Hartley-Kong (District of Columbia)

SUNDAY, MARCH 24

  • The First Step by Kathleen Maule Holen (Kansas)

60-minute Digital

This will also feature recorded live shows from first week of the festival.

MONDAY, MARCH 25 – SATURDAY, MARCH 30

  • Purdah by J.Lois Diamond (New York)
  • Diary of a Bastard Child by Nikki Luellen (Texas)
  • Diversifications by Natalie Ekberg (United Kingdom)
  • Beholden by Susan Lily Jackson (California)
  • The Memories We Keep by Ada Cheng (Illinois)

March 21-24, 2024

LIVE-IN-THEATRE

March 25-30, 2024

DIGITAL

IT‘S A PARTY AND YOU’RE INVITED!

RSVP

Limited to first 50 guests. Catering by Simply Delish Meals.

MEET THE PLAYWRIGHTS!

10-minute self-produced plays

Live In-Theatre Thursday, March 21

Recorded version available to view March 9-11

Kimberly Schwartz

I’m (Not) Okay

FLORIDA

Nora is a normal girl. She has a family. She has friends. She has her own hopes and dreams. But Nora also has something else. Depression eats away at her in secret. Anxiety is a constant, albeit unwanted, companion. So, what happens when that depression, that fear, takes a physical form? How can she cope when coming face-to-face with her own mind?

RATED:     , mental health

Karen Campion

High Occupancy Detour

FLORIDA

Three 20-somethings in a carpool take a detour through self-discovery and a little innocent adultnapping to return as the people they might have been.

RATED:

Janet Scaglione

Rose

FLORIDA

During the summer of 2020, a white woman, raised in the South, is challenged to confront the past, consider her choices, accept her privilege, and create the future.

RATED: G

 

Kimberly Schwartz is an aspiring new playwright from Florida. This is her first finished work. Kimberly was born in North Carolina and is the youngest of three children. Born paralyzed from the waist down, she is no stranger to adversity and the social issues that are prevalent in our society. As someone with mental illness herself, this one-act is very important to her.

Karen Campion is passionate about drama! She uses drama along with a splash of humor to examine dynamics in relationships, families, trauma, tragedy, triumph, all things everyday life in hopes of creating a more compassionate, connected, and caring world. She has written two fiction novels, three award-winning TV Drama Pilots scripts, and is incredibly proud of her soon-to-produced one-act play, Poppy in Bloom.

Janet is an award-winning educator turned playwright, composer, activist, and entertainer. She founded The Broad’s Way to create and produce works that celebrate womanhood. Her experience developing and teaching courses on Diversity has led her to write about race and privilege. She continues to write and perform locally to support theater, explore new work, and enjoy the stage. She is the winner of the Tampa Bay Theater Festival Short Play Competition 2022.

Ada Cheng

The Memories We Keep

ILLINOIS

This piece, a solo performance about an interaction with my mother, is about making peace with childhood trauma, particularly generational trauma, about making choices about the kind of memories we want to keep about people and for ourselves.

RATED:

 

Aurora Peugh

Color Theory

FLORIDA

“Color Theory” is a one-act play set in Cheyenne, Wyoming, during the summer of 2016. This story revolves around Samantha Reynolds, a retired swimmer, and her son, Oliver, as they are attempting to escape an abusive situation. As his mom navigates these challenging circumstances, Oliver’s “colorful” imagination begins to intertwine with his harsh reality, causing him to fall deeper and deeper into his imaginative “safe space.” This play explores themes of abuse, resilience, and the representation of emotions through color. 

*Trigger warnings: Domestic violence, violence against children, death, and harsh language*

 

An educator-turned storyteller and curator, Dr. Ada Cheng has utilized storytelling to illustrate structural inequities, raise critical awareness, and build intimate communities. Committed to amplifying and uplifting marginalized voices, she has created numerous storytelling platforms for BIPOC and LGBTQIA community members to tell difficult and vulnerable stories. As an emerging playwright, she has written and published short plays to explore urgent social concerns of our time. Dr. Cheng has been a speaker for Illinois Humanities Road Scholars Speakers Bureau since 2019. She is named 2023-24 Lund Gill Chair at Dominican University. Her interests encompass academia, storytelling/performance, and advocacy.

Aurora Peugh is a 19-year-old college student majoring in Theatre Arts at the University of South Florida. She has a focus in Stage Managment, minoring in Communication, and is attempting a certificate in Business. She is full of gratitude to be included among all of these incredible women. This festival is so important, and she is beyond excited for Color Theory to have its very first audience!

MEET THE PLAYWRIGHTS!

60-minute Powerstories-produced plays

Live In-Theatre Friday, March 22

Krystle Dellihue

Too Woke to Book

MICHIGAN

Payton hasn’t booked a theater gig since 2020. She believes the new “woke” DEI initiatives have prevented her from thriving like her roommate who’s been booked and busy. At what lengths will she go to accomplish her dream of being on Broadway.

RATED:

Live In-Theatre Saturday, March 23

Alli Hartley-Kong

The Wives; A Post-Roe American Abortion Odyssey

DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA

Two couples facing a harrowing “choice.”

RATED:

Live In-Theatre Sunday, March 24

Kathleen Maule Holen

The First Step

KANSAS

The First Step tells the story of how four women were changed for good by a secretive young man who became their personal fitness coach. For the past fourteen years Dotty Paulson and her three friends, Cassie French, Brenda Underhill and Susan Marcus, have been driving to the top of Veterans Hill on New Year’s Day. They salute the dawn of the new year, cook breakfast on a grill and affirm their resolutions. They affirm the same ones every year—lose weight, quit smoking, cut back on drinking, get more exercise—and promptly break all of them. Finally, they admit that they are middle-aged and out of shape. But 2014 is going to be different if Dotty has anything to say about it. She’s met the new personal trainer in town, Glen Duncan, and signed herself and her friends up for fitness training. Now all she has to do is convince them to forget their worn-out resolutions and make just one: by next year they will be strong enough to climb the steps to the top of Veterans Hill. Glen may not be the perfect trainer. After all, his motto is “do as I say, not as I do”, and it’s obvious he has some serious emotional baggage. Why else would he be taking large doses of pain killers with alcohol? Despite his dangerous personal habits, over the next nine months he sets all four women on the path to strength, both physical and emotional, and then tragically leaves them but not without an enduring sense of purpose.

RATED:

Krystle Dellihue is a playwright from Detroit, Michigan. She graduated from Eastern Michigan University and that’s where she found her passion of writing stories based on historical events. In 2018 she wrote her first play based on her and her friends’ early financial struggles in college. During the 2020 social uprisings she found her writer’s voice by telling the untold stories of her family and iconic black historical figures. Since 2020 she’s had multiple short plays produced: Hattie: A Seat At The Table, White Coat and a host of staged readings. All of her plays address social justice issues that center Black people as leads.

Alli Hartley-Kong is a playwright and public historian based in Washington D.C. Her full-length play People Should Talk About What’s Real is a Bay Area Playwright’s Festival semi-finalist and Henley Rose finalist. She has been commissioned by Single Carrot Theatre and Central Square Theatre, and has written over a dozen ten-minute plays that have been performed all over the U.S. as well as Ireland and Australia.

Kathleen Maule Holen has participated in Community Theatre since 2015. Her Award-winning plays include The First Step; Detective Weston’s Last Case, Second Place in the Mixing It Up Spring Festival 2021, Nobody Kills Sherlock, first place, Julian Playwright Festival 2023 and Love’s Labour’s Lost & Found, third place, Robert J Pickering/J.R. Colbeck Award for Playwriting Excellence 2023. She has contributed two plays to Drama Notebook, Dorothy’s Adventure in the Magical Kingdom of Oz and Benjamin the Hiding Bunny. She is a current member of the Dramatists Guild of America.

MEET THE PLAYWRIGHTS!

60-minute digital plays

Plays available to View March 25-30

J.Lois Diamond

Purdah

NEW YORK

It is India under the Raj. Kamala marries into the most powerful family in the country but is treated cruelly by her in-laws. She struggles to end the evil custom of Purdah. Will anyone follow her lead?

RATED:

Nikki Luellen

Diary of a Bastard Child

TEXAS

Diary of a Bastard Child is a story about a 16-year-old teen who gets raped at a party and ends up pregnant. Her son grows up without his mom or dad and begins to question his reason for living.

RATED:

Natalie Ekberg

Diversifications

UNITED KINGDOM

‘Diversifications’ is a female-centric play, about three women who meet in the waiting room to receive the results of their genetic testing. With emotions running high and the clock ticking, they share their most intimate thoughts and yearnings. They soon realize that each of them has something the other one craves: children, career, freedom. Three women. Three generations. Same desire: change.

By the end of their encounter, they decide to walk out of the clinic without getting the results. Playing ‘genetic roulette’, they start living by new rules and follow their dreams. However, their decision has dire consequences. A year after they have passed, their husbands/partners meet to try and understand the logic behind that spontaneous, yet fatal decision.

The play, full of ‘laugh out loud’ moments, is structured as a ‘back and forth’ of opinions: male versus female perspective on marriage, love, and parenthood. This is a heart-warming story about tough life choices, love, and forgiveness. A highly emotive piece, it is peppered with humor and a deep understanding of humans and their complicated relationships.

RATED:

Susan Lily Jackson

Beholden

CALIFORNIA

Sarah, from San Francisco, is visiting the nursing home in Liberty, NC, where her mother has just died; Basil was Sarah’s mother’s caregiver. Terry (Sarah’s wife) is also in attendance for the funeral. A confrontation occurs when Sarah tries to right a wrong. Unbeknownst to all of them, is that Sarah’s family, the Camaan’s, owned Basil’s family during the Civil War.

RATED:

J.Lois Diamond’s work has been performed off-off Broadway, regionally, in Canada, @ The International Human Rights Art Festival & The Inge Festival. Her play “Growl” was produced @ The Downtown Urban Arts Festival, & Theatre Odyssey, (runner up for best play). Staged reading 2021 Valdez Theatre Conference. Her play “I Feel Good!” was scheduled for production @ N.Y.’s Signature Theater, 2020 as part of DUAF Festival, cancelled due to pandemic. Her monologues have been published in Smith & Kraus’ Monologues Anthologies 2021, 2022, and 2023 and in Applause Books’ “She Persisted”. She has written over ten plays for the 365 Women A Year Project, and is committed to telling the stories of historic women, as a way to promote the value of all women. She is a proud member of Honor Roll!, Polaris North and The Dramatists Guild, where she recently studied with Tina Howe. jloisdiamond.com  https://newplayexchange.org/users/20210/jlois-diamond

Nikki Luellen is a multi-talented artist, writer, and community advocate. Since 2012, she has written, directed, and produced over 100 stage plays, short films, and documentaries, which center on issues impacting the lives of black people such as poverty, drug abuse, gentrification, and mental illness. She uses her art as a tool to educate people on the history of oppression in America and challenges the audience to work together to find a solution to these problems.

Her poetry has been featured on news and radio stations in Texas, including KXAN News, 90.1 kpft, and Texas 101 Jams. Today, she continues to advocate against racism and brutality in the criminal justice system and continues to perform her poems at community events and protests in Texas.

She is the Founder and Executive Director of the nonprofit organization, Black Liberation Movement.

Natalie Ekberg, a renowned Screenwriter and Playwright represented by Madeleine Cotter at WGM Literary Agency, is adept at crafting compelling characters and narratives across film, TV, and theatre.

Her upcoming murder mystery feature film, ‘SAVASANA,’ is currently in pre-production. In TV, ‘MOTHER UNKNOWN’ is actively developed with Spirit production company, and ‘The Small Print’ was shortlisted for the C21 Media Drama Competition in 2022.

As the head writer for the TV musical drama ‘Hackney Central’ produced by Uzong production company, Natalie exhibits creative leadership. ‘Espousal,’ a TV comedy-drama series, has been optioned by Wave Films, emphasizing the global appeal of her work.

In the short film domain, ‘That Girl, Peugeot,’ and ‘The Colours Within’ secured global recognition, with the former attaining a distribution deal with Gonella Productions. Additionally, her co-writing contribution to ‘Amor Martis’ highlights her versatility.

Natalie’s commissioned Nordic Noir psychological thriller for director Tim James Brown. She had a successful three-week run of her play ‘Diversifications’ at the Old Red Lion Theatre in June 2022.

Jackson received the Bay Area Theatre Critics Circle Award for Best Original Play. Work: staged- read/produced New York City, Bay Area, Eugene O’Neill Foundation, William Inge Festival, Sydney, London, Red Curtain International Theatre. DEATH BE NOT LOUD! –Best of Capital Fringe—Washington Post positive review. Published: Smith and Kraus, (2017-2023) Applause, Hello, Godot! Finalist: Creede Repertory Theatre; Henley Rose Competition for Female Playwrights; Fusion Theatre Company; Centre Stage; 3Girls Theatre Co. (SF). Participant: Mid-America Theatre Conference, Last Frontier Theatre Conference, Powerstories: Voices of Women Festival; Equity Library Theatre Festival-Sparks Creative Works, Believability; A LIPSTICK CALLED PROTAGONIST; NICE: Shiny Unicorns Productions. Jackson was part of SF Festival for Young Playwrights developed by Lauren Yee.

2024 VOICES OF WOMEN THEATRE FESTIVAL

Celebrating 11 local, national, and international womens’ voices.

After receiving submissions from all over the world, Powerstories Theatre is proud to present the fourth annual Voices of Women Theatre Festival, showcasing eleven local, national, and international playwrights to a global audience. The festival is a combination of 60-minute and 10-minute plays.

The festival runs from March 7 through March 16, 2024; however, guests can enjoy the first week’s shows live at the theatre, and beginning the second week, guests can watch both the digital submissions and the recorded live shows beginning on March 11, 2024.

Powerstories will be hosting a Kickoff Celebration of the Voices of Women Theatre Festival for theatre attendees, playwrights, cast, and crew to talk about their play. The special event will provide drinks, hors-d’oeuvres, raffles, games, and camaraderie to launch its fourth annual Voices of Women event. The date and location are TBD.

On the evening of March 17, Powerstories will be having a closing awards ceremony with a playwright Q&A with all playwrights, cast, crew, and the audience on Zoom.

2024 selected plays are:

THURSDAY, MARCH 7

10-minute Self-Produced

  • I’m (Not) Okay by Kimberly Schwartz (Florida)
  • High Occupancy Detour by Karen Campion (Florida)
  • Rose by Janet Scaglione (Florida)
  • The Memories We Keep by Ada Cheng (Illinois)
  • USF writing students submission TBD (Florida)

60-minute Powerstories-Produced

FRIDAY, MARCH 8

  • Too Woke Too Book by Krystle Dellihue (Michigan)

SATURDAY, MARCH 9

  • The Wives; A Post-Roe American Abortion Odyssey by Alli Hartley-Kong (District of Columbia)

SUNDAY, MARCH 10

  • The First Step by Kathleen Maule Holen (Kansas)

60-minute Digital

This will also feature recorded live shows from first week of the festival.

MONDAY, MARCH 10 – SATURDAY, MARCH 16

  • Purdah by J.Lois Diamond (New York)
  • Diary of a Bastard Child by Nikki Luellen (Texas)
  • Diversifications by Natalie Ekberg (United Kingdom)
  • Beholden by Susan Lily Jackson (California)

Although there is a general admission ticket with ticket checkout, please wait for your email from Ticketleap. Save your ticket email from Ticketleap, as it contains the video link to watch any of the digital and recorded show(s) that you purchased for the second week of the festival.

MEET THE PLAYWRIGHTS!

10-minute self-produced plays

Live In-Theatre Thursday, March 7

Recorded version available to view March 9-11

Kimberly Schwartz

I’m (Not) Okay

FLORIDA

Nora is a normal girl. She has a family. She has friends. She has her own hopes and dreams. But Nora also has something else. Depression eats away at her in secret. Anxiety is a constant, albeit unwanted, companion. So, what happens when that depression, that fear, takes a physical form? How can she cope when coming face-to-face with her own mind?

RATED:     , mental health

Karen Campion

High Occupancy Detour

FLORIDA

Three 20-somethings in a carpool take a detour through self-discovery and a little innocent adultnapping to return as the people they might have been.

RATED:

Janet Scaglione

Rose

FLORIDA

During the summer of 2020, a white woman, raised in the South, is challenged to confront the past, consider her choices, accept her privilege, and create the future.

RATED: G

 

Ada Cheng

The Memories We Keep

ILLINOIS

This piece, a solo performance about an interaction with my mother, is about making peace with childhood trauma, particularly generational trauma, about making choices about the kind of memories we want to keep about people and for ourselves.

RATED:

 

Kimberly Schwartz is an aspiring new playwright from Florida. This is her first finished work. Kimberly was born in North Carolina and is the youngest of three children. Born paralyzed from the waist down, she is no stranger to adversity and the social issues that are prevalent in our society. As someone with mental illness herself, this one-act is very important to her.

Karen Campion is passionate about drama! She uses drama along with a splash of humor to examine dynamics in relationships, families, trauma, tragedy, triumph, all things everyday life in hopes of creating a more compassionate, connected, and caring world. She has written two fiction novels, three award-winning TV Drama Pilots scripts, and is incredibly proud of her soon-to-produced one-act play, Poppy in Bloom.

Janet is an award-winning educator turned playwright, composer, activist, and entertainer. She founded The Broad’s Way to create and produce works that celebrate womanhood. Her experience developing and teaching courses on Diversity has led her to write about race and privilege. She continues to write and perform locally to support theater, explore new work, and enjoy the stage. She is the winner of the Tampa Bay Theater Festival Short Play Competition 2022.

An educator-turned storyteller and curator, Dr. Ada Cheng has utilized storytelling to illustrate structural inequities, raise critical awareness, and build intimate communities. Committed to amplifying and uplifting marginalized voices, she has created numerous storytelling platforms for BIPOC and LGBTQIA community members to tell difficult and vulnerable stories. As an emerging playwright, she has written and published short plays to explore urgent social concerns of our time. Dr. Cheng has been a speaker for Illinois Humanities Road Scholars Speakers Bureau since 2019. She is named 2023-24 Lund Gill Chair at Dominican University. Her interests encompass academia, storytelling/performance, and advocacy.

VIRTUAL PLAYBILLS

LIVE, IN-THEATRE

10-Minute Self-Produced Live-In-Theatre Play

I’m (Not) Okay by Kimberly Schwartz (Florida)

STARRING

PRODUCTION CREW

SETTING

BIOS

DIRECTOR’S NOTES

TBD

10-Minute Self-Produced Live-In-Theatre Play

High Occupancy Detour by Karen Campion (Florida)

STARRING

PRODUCTION CREW

SETTING

BIOS

DIRECTOR’S NOTES

TBD

10-Minute Self-Produced Live-In-Theatre Play

The Memories We Keep by Ada Cheng (Illinois)

STARRING

PRODUCTION CREW

SETTING

BIOS

DIRECTOR’S NOTES

TBD

10-Minute Self-Produced Live-In-Theatre Play

Rose by Janet Scaglione (Florida)

STARRING

PRODUCTION CREW

SETTING

BIOS

DIRECTOR’S NOTES

TBD

10-Minute Self-Produced Live-In-Theatre Play

USF writing students submission TBD (Florida)

STARRING

PRODUCTION CREW

SETTING

BIOS

DIRECTOR’S NOTES

TBD

MEET THE PLAYWRIGHTS!

60-minute Powerstories-produced plays

Live In-Theatre Friday, March 8

Krystle Dellihue

Too Woke to Book

MICHIGAN

Payton hasn’t booked a theater gig since 2020. She believes the new “woke” DEI initiatives have prevented her from thriving like her roommate who’s been booked and busy. At what lengths will she go to accomplish her dream of being on Broadway.

RATED:

Live In-Theatre Saturday, March 9

Alli Hartley-Kong

The Wives; A Post-Roe American Abortion Odyssey

DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA

Two couples facing a harrowing “choice.”

RATED:

Live In-Theatre Sunday, March 10

Kathleen Maule Holen

The First Step

KANSAS

The First Step tells the story of how four women were changed for good by a secretive young man who became their personal fitness coach. For the past fourteen years Dotty Paulson and her three friends, Cassie French, Brenda Underhill and Susan Marcus, have been driving to the top of Veterans Hill on New Year’s Day. They salute the dawn of the new year, cook breakfast on a grill and affirm their resolutions. They affirm the same ones every year—lose weight, quit smoking, cut back on drinking, get more exercise—and promptly break all of them. Finally, they admit that they are middle-aged and out of shape. But 2014 is going to be different if Dotty has anything to say about it. She’s met the new personal trainer in town, Glen Duncan, and signed herself and her friends up for fitness training. Now all she has to do is convince them to forget their worn-out resolutions and make just one: by next year they will be strong enough to climb the steps to the top of Veterans Hill. Glen may not be the perfect trainer. After all, his motto is “do as I say, not as I do”, and it’s obvious he has some serious emotional baggage. Why else would he be taking large doses of pain killers with alcohol? Despite his dangerous personal habits, over the next nine months he sets all four women on the path to strength, both physical and emotional, and then tragically leaves them but not without an enduring sense of purpose.

RATED:

Krystle Dellihue is a playwright from Detroit, Michigan. She graduated from Eastern Michigan University and that’s where she found her passion of writing stories based on historical events. In 2018 she wrote her first play based on her and her friends’ early financial struggles in college. During the 2020 social uprisings she found her writer’s voice by telling the untold stories of her family and iconic black historical figures. Since 2020 she’s had multiple short plays produced: Hattie: A Seat At The Table, White Coat and a host of staged readings. All of her plays address social justice issues that center Black people as leads.

Alli Hartley-Kong is a playwright and public historian based in Washington D.C. Her full-length play People Should Talk About What’s Real is a Bay Area Playwright’s Festival semi-finalist and Henley Rose finalist. She has been commissioned by Single Carrot Theatre and Central Square Theatre, and has written over a dozen ten-minute plays that have been performed all over the U.S. as well as Ireland and Australia.

Kathleen Maule Holen has participated in Community Theatre since 2015. Her Award-winning plays include The First Step; Detective Weston’s Last Case, Second Place in the Mixing It Up Spring Festival 2021, Nobody Kills Sherlock, first place, Julian Playwright Festival 2023 and Love’s Labour’s Lost & Found, third place, Robert J Pickering/J.R. Colbeck Award for Playwriting Excellence 2023. She has contributed two plays to Drama Notebook, Dorothy’s Adventure in the Magical Kingdom of Oz and Benjamin the Hiding Bunny. She is a current member of the Dramatists Guild of America.

VIRTUAL PLAYBILLS

LIVE, IN-THEATRE

60-Minute Powerstories-Produced Live-In-Theatre Play

The First Step by Kathleen Maule Holen (Kansas)

STARRING

PRODUCTION CREW

SETTING

BIOS

DIRECTOR’S NOTES

TBD

60-Minute Powerstories-Produced Live-In-Theatre Play

The Wives; A Post-Roe American Abortion Odyssey by Alli Hartley-Kong (District of Columbia)

STARRING

PRODUCTION CREW

SETTING

BIOS

DIRECTOR’S NOTES

TBD

60-Minute Powerstories-Produced Live-In-Theatre Play

Too Woke Too Book by Krystle Dellihue (Michigan)

STARRING

PRODUCTION CREW

SETTING

BIOS

DIRECTOR’S NOTES

TBD

MEET THE PLAYWRIGHTS!

60-minute digital plays

Plays available to View March 11-17

J.Lois Diamond

Purdah

NEW YORK

It is India under the Raj. Kamala marries into the most powerful family in the country but is treated cruelly by her in-laws. She struggles to end the evil custom of Purdah. Will anyone follow her lead?

RATED:

Nikki Luellen

Diary of a Bastard Child

TEXAS

Diary of a Bastard Child is a story about a 16-year-old teen who gets raped at a party and ends up pregnant. Her son grows up without his mom or dad and begins to question his reason for living.

RATED:

Natalie Ekberg

Diversifications

UNITED KINGDOM

When is the right time to start living on your own terms? ‘Diversifications’ is a female centric play, about three women who meet in the waiting room to receive the results of their genetic testing for cancer. With emotions running high and the clock ticking, they share their most intimate thoughts and yearnings. They soon realise that each of them have something the other one craves: children, career, freedom. Three women. Three generations. Same desire: change. By the end of their encounter, they decide to walk out of the clinic without getting the results. Playing ‘genetic roulette’, they start living by new rules and follow their dreams. However, their decision has dire consequences. A year after they have passed, their husbands / partners meet to try and understand the logic behind that spontaneous, yet fatal decision. The play, full of ‘laugh out loud’ moments, is structured as a ‘back and forth’ of opinions: male versus female perspective on marriage, love and parenthood. This is a heart-warming story about tough life choices, love and forgiveness. A highly emotive piece, it is peppered with humour and a deep understanding of humans and their complicated relationships.

RATED:

Susan Lily Jackson

Beholden

CALIFORNIA

Sarah, from San Francisco, is visiting the nursing home in Liberty, NC, where her mother has just died; Basil was Sarah’s mother’s caregiver. Terry (Sarah’s wife) is also in attendance for the funeral. A confrontation occurs when Sarah tries to right a wrong. Unbeknownst to all of them, is that Sarah’s family, the Camaan’s, owned Basil’s family during the Civil War.

RATED:

J.Lois Diamond’s work has been performed off-off Broadway, regionally, in Canada, @ The International Human Rights Art Festival & The Inge Festival. Her play “Growl” was produced @ The Downtown Urban Arts Festival, & Theatre Odyssey, (runner up for best play). Staged reading 2021 Valdez Theatre Conference. Her play “I Feel Good!” was scheduled for production @ N.Y.’s Signature Theater, 2020 as part of DUAF Festival, cancelled due to pandemic. Her monologues have been published in Smith & Kraus’ Monologues Anthologies 2021, 2022, and 2023 and in Applause Books’ “She Persisted”. She has written over ten plays for the 365 Women A Year Project, and is committed to telling the stories of historic women, as a way to promote the value of all women. She is a proud member of Honor Roll!, Polaris North and The Dramatists Guild, where she recently studied with Tina Howe. jloisdiamond.com  https://newplayexchange.org/users/20210/jlois-diamond

Nikki Luellen is a multi-talented artist, writer, and community advocate. Since 2012, she has written, directed, and produced over 100 stage plays, short films, and documentaries, which center on issues impacting the lives of black people such as poverty, drug abuse, gentrification, and mental illness. She uses her art as a tool to educate people on the history of oppression in America and challenges the audience to work together to find a solution to these problems.

Her poetry has been featured on news and radio stations in Texas, including KXAN News, 90.1 kpft, and Texas 101 Jams. Today, she continues to advocate against racism and brutality in the criminal justice system and continues to perform her poems at community events and protests in Texas.

She is the Founder and Executive Director of the nonprofit organization, Black Liberation Movement.

Natalie Ekberg, a renowned Screenwriter and Playwright represented by Madeleine Cotter at WGM Literary Agency, is adept at crafting compelling characters and narratives across film, TV, and theatre.

Her upcoming murder mystery feature film, ‘SAVASANA,’ is currently in pre-production. In TV, ‘MOTHER UNKNOWN’ is actively developed with Spirit production company, and ‘The Small Print’ was shortlisted for the C21 Media Drama Competition in 2022.

As the head writer for the TV musical drama ‘Hackney Central’ produced by Uzong production company, Natalie exhibits creative leadership. ‘Espousal,’ a TV comedy-drama series, has been optioned by Wave Films, emphasizing the global appeal of her work.

In the short film domain, ‘That Girl, Peugeot,’ and ‘The Colours Within’ secured global recognition, with the former attaining a distribution deal with Gonella Productions. Additionally, her co-writing contribution to ‘Amor Martis’ highlights her versatility.

Natalie’s commissioned Nordic Noir psychological thriller for director Tim James Brown. She had a successful three-week run of her play ‘Diversifications’ at the Old Red Lion Theatre in June 2022.

Jackson received the Bay Area Theatre Critics Circle Award for Best Original Play. Work: staged- read/produced New York City, Bay Area, Eugene O’Neill Foundation, William Inge Festival, Sydney, London, Red Curtain International Theatre. DEATH BE NOT LOUD! –Best of Capital Fringe—Washington Post positive review. Published: Smith and Kraus, (2017-2023) Applause, Hello, Godot! Finalist: Creede Repertory Theatre; Henley Rose Competition for Female Playwrights; Fusion Theatre Company; Centre Stage; 3Girls Theatre Co. (SF). Participant: Mid-America Theatre Conference, Last Frontier Theatre Conference, Powerstories: Voices of Women Festival; Equity Library Theatre Festival-Sparks Creative Works, Believability; A LIPSTICK CALLED PROTAGONIST; NICE: Shiny Unicorns Productions. Jackson was part of SF Festival for Young Playwrights developed by Lauren Yee.

VIRTUAL PLAYBILLS

60-Minute Digital Play

Purdah by J.Lois Diamond (New York)

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60-Minute Digital Play

Diary of a Bastard Child by Nikki Luellen (Texas)

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60-Minute Digital Play

Diversifications by Natalie Ekberg (United Kingdom)

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SETTING

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TBD

60-Minute Digital Play

Beholden by Susan Lily Jackson (California)

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TBD

MEET OUR JUDGES!

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