The 4th annual LOCAL Lab New Play Fest

The lifeblood of the theatre is new plays, because theatre is at its best when it sheds new light on our present circumstances. Even classic scripts are most effective when they reveal insights into contemporary situations.

To this end, LOCAL Theatre Company's efforts are a breath of fresh air in Boulder and the metro area, where, aside from the DCTC's New Play Summit, readings of manuscripts from a national talent base are rare.

This year's program, to be held at eTown Hall, 1535 Spruce Street, Boulder, promises to be an interesting mix of compelling scripts, revealing and helpful follow-up discussions led by Jill Rafson, the Literary Manager of the acclaimed Roundabout Theatre (NYC), a playwrighting workshop, and a couple of fun social events. Tunes will be spun by local favorite DJ Savior Breath.

(Left to right) Mare Trevathan, Megan Mathews, Pesha Rudnick, Sylvia Gregory, and Rachel Fowler
LOCAL Theatre Company: (L to R) Mare Trevathan, Megan Mathews,
Pesha Rudnick, Sylvia Gregory, and Rachel Fowler
Once again, the talented LOCAL artistic team attracted submissions from a number of rising stars, all of whom have received multiple awards and acclaim, including Brian Watkins, whose plays include MY DAUGHTER KEEPS OUR HAMMER (NY Times and TimeOutNY Critics' Pick, 2014 world premiere at The Flea Theater) and WYOMING, GENERAL STORE (2012 Seven Devils Playwrights Conference), Jiehae Park whose play HANNAH AND THE DREAD GAZEBO won the 2013 Princess Grace Award and 2013 Leah Ryan Prize, and Meridith Friedman whose plays have been developed and performed at The Kennedy Center, Chicago Dramatists, The Greenhouse Theatre Center, Curious Theatre Company, and the NNPN National New Play Showcase, among others.

The three featured plays are:

Friday, March 13 at 7 PM
Brian Watkins
Brian Watkins
Brian Watkins's Wyoming: In the Tuttle family, the past is not to be discussed. But when their estranged and silent brother is spotted at a hometown diner twenty years after a confounding childhood crime, buried memories and unspoken bounties hatch one boozy, plotting Thanksgiving. LOCAL Artistic Director Pesha Rudnick directs the reading, which will include a couple of "Lesser Americans" ensemble members (Nate Miller and Laura Ramadei) from the current production of "Wyoming" in NYC, as well as locals Tim McCracken, Benjamin Bonenfant, Kate Gleason, Missy Moore, Miles Wartes, and Nate Miller. A discussion led by Jill Rafson follows the reading.

Saturday, March 14 at 6 PM
Jiehae Park
Jiehae Park
Jiehae Park's Hannah and the Dread Gazebo When Dr. Hannah Lee receives her grandma's suicide note and a "wish" in a bottle, her trip home from Brooklyn to Seoul brings the family together for the first time in twenty years. As they reunite, Hannah, her brother, and her parents grapple with the complexities of living and dying, East and West, and how to retrieve Grandma's body from the wrong side of the DMZ. In this fresh and magical play, dreams hide in gazebos, tigers roam among us, and "sometimes logic is bullshit." LOCAL Artistic Associate Mare Trevathan will direct Hoon Lee , Peter Trinh, Joy Osmanski, Wai Ching Ho, Jackie Chung, and Samantha Quan. Following the reading and discussion (facilitated by Jill Rafson), the audience is invited to a reception with the artists.

Sunday, March 15 at 2 PM
Meridith Friedman
Meridith Friedman
Meridith Friedman's The Firestorm: As Gaby prepares for public appearances supporting her husband, Patrick, in his bid for governor, the campaign is hit with impending scandal. Information surfaces regarding Patrick's participation in a racist dare during a college hazing rite. The campaign wheels spin to save his image. With headlines and media conferences pressing in on them, Gaby is poised on a fulcrum where the personal becomes explosively political. LOCAL member Rachel Fowler directs Tim McCracken, Tyee Tilghman, Betty Hart, and Audra Blaser. The reading will be followed by a discussion facilitated by Jill Rafson.

The LOCAL Lab Master Playwriting Workshop will be led by Jill Rafson. In addition to serving as the literary manager of Roundabout Theatre Company, Ms. Rafson also serves as associate producer for Roundabout Underground and acts as the key staff member for the company's New Play Initiative. The class is scheduled for Sunday, March 15th, 11 AM—1 PM.

Kristen Adele and Steven Cole Hughes, from LOCAL's 2014 festival
Kristen Adele and Steven Cole Hughes,
from LOCAL's 2014 festival
LOCAL Lab Festival Passes include all Lab events except the master class, plus reserved seating, as well as the launch party at Todd Reed Studio, 2015 Pearl Street in Boulder, on Friday, March 13th, 5:30--7:00 PM, the after party following Saturday night's reading, and the Kaffeeklatsch on Sunday, March 15th, 10:00--10:45 AM. Festival Passes are $65.00 advance/$75 at the door/$36 student.

Tickets to all events are available at

Bob Bows

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