Fall 2021 Katrina Byrd's Standing Tough in the Buff "Karen's world turns upside down when LUSA'D article, 'Standing Tough on the Buff' is published in the college newspaper."
Madison Wetzell's The Body Play "The Body Play is about life with a chronic illness and the absurdity of being embodied. One protagonist is played by two actors, a detached, neurotic mind, and her chaotic, screaming body. The Mind submits her Body to the scrutiny of experts—doctors, therapists, yoga teachers—and ultimately explores what it might mean to be a body, as opposed to being a mind that, regrettably, also has a body. "
Mallory Jane Weiss'Inside Siberia "Five of the top female sled dogs — Lucy, Doon, Logan, Iva, and Hope — battle it out during pre-season for two slots on the mythical Siberian sled dog team. But as civil unrest grows outside the camp, it becomes clear that this sled is about much more than a race."
Rachael Carnes' Yoncalla "Yoncalla, Oregon: one hundred years ago, a dinky town about 45 minutes south of where I live. Sounds cute enough, but like many towns in the West, Yoncalla tells a pretty dark story. There’s a lawless alchemy to these pioneer outposts, where ‘settlement’ runs over whole peoples, where prejudice finds a foothold, then a platform, then a foundation. Yoncalla takes us to the past, to find today, and tomorrow."
David Gregory's This Nice Ohio Sense of Worry "Instead of doing Our Town, Annabell Kelton has written a play about the end of her life for her local theater. All her loved ones try to put it on with a brave face, but knowing the ending is hard. Good thing Annabell wants to skip all the sad parts."
Caroline Sarkozi's dirty, clean, dirty, clean "What do Giulia and Julia have in common besides both being in their college laundromat at 3:23 am? Can you fit yourself into a washing machine? Will drinking bleach kill you?"
Paul Hufker's Modern Houses in the Lush Green Savannah that Lies in the Shadow of the Volcano "Two white couples, at the edge of everything . Can (wo)man outrun him(her)self?"
Heidi Kraay'ssee in the dark "When Oni, a young girl with great power, shows up in the desolate village that Juneau, Alaska has become and reveals abilities that could help them rebuild their world, the surviving community embraces her as their new hope. That is, until a boy is found hunting her down with brutal accusations, a boy Oni doesn’t recognize but who brings out the worst in her."
Colleen O'Doherty'sPower Surge "These women are becoming more powerful in more ways than one."
Catherine Craig's Suspended Belief "A camerawoman risks all to flee to a women’s shelter. When the system can’t protect her and her children, she finds unlikely allies in an oddball special effects film company called OddFX."
Reneé Flemings' empty spaces "Mara's life is thrown into chaos beginning with a concerted effort to remove BIPOC from her job, then the disappearance of her fourteen year old daughter. She struggles to maintain balance as she spins out of control trying to deal with the empty spaces in her life."
Jordan Elizabeth Henry's Resurrection "Riley returns home to bury her grandfather, but she has a secret to share with her sister Shae about a trauma that occurred many years before."
Fall, 2020 David Hilder's Those Days are Over "Those Days Are Over concerns the five MacKillop sisters in the immediate wake of their mother's death. They're not exactly close, these five, and as they tussle with each other they're also tussling with the past. Alliances are formed and broken; detente is reached one moment, dissolved the next. Fundamentally the play looks at what it is to be a Gen X woman now. It's a vigorous collage, a deeply felt comedy, a joyous journey into grief."
Shoshannah Boray's The First Sister Trip "Three sisters are stuck on a long flight with their mother's ashes in an urn. They've been changing alliances, keeping secrets and trading insults among the three of them for more than 50 years. The First Sister Trip is about the ways we love and understand one another, and asks if it is possible to put aside our assumptions, and our differences, in order to care for one another."
Tiffa Foster's Notorious MILFs "When a group of diverse mothers from a Midwestern suburb decide that marriage and family have robbed them of their future, they form a guerrilla-style militia to take down the Patriarchy, one picket-fenced McMansion at a time."
Molly Powers Gallagher's True Now "A floundering recent grad joins a multi-level marketing scheme to pay the bills only to discover she’s entrenched herself in a mad-as-hell Mom group seeking revenge for political corruption in the Department of Education."
Elisabeth Giffin Speckman's Clyt; or The Bathtub Play "Clytemnestra never launched a thousand ships, but that doesn't mean she couldn't have."
Mollie Gordon's Hartford, Or: A Hellish Haven for Exceptionally Strong Quirky Lesbian Sexual Trauma Survivors "It's a way too early morning on a train platform at Hartford Union Station. We meet Babyface, a young woman who defines herself as 'pedophile-bait.' This is her story. She is alone until she isn't."
Clé's Stretch Set in a recently-gentrified neighborhood of Nashville, Tennessee, an uptight yoga studio owner is forced to share her space with a joyous, well-choreographed group of Zumba-dancers. In the process, she discovers that sometimes it’s good to stretch. This musical showcases a jukebox of up to 25 upbeat, energetic Latin, pop, hip-hop, and West African hits." Donna Hoke's Finding Neil Patrick Harris "When frenemy salon workers Cha-Cha and Katie are privileged to hear a favorite customer's dying wish, they set off to make it come true--and find themselves on a quest to make their own wishes come true as well--even though they don't know what they are.
Shortlisted Writers Featured on Shortlist Sunday Alaina Messineo Amy Tofte Bambi Everson Emily Breeze Lilly Camp Mallory Jane Weiss Rachael Carnes Rachel Rios Robynne Graffam
Spring/Summer 2020 Tom Cavanaugh’s The Chair Lady In 1984, behind every political candidate that runs for office there is a core group of women that run their campaign and get the candidate elected. Cookie Donato is not just the leader of the group, but is also The Chair Lady of the political party in power. One week before Election Day, the campaign goes into a tailspin when Cookie realizes her files have been stolen and the press finds out that her candidate for Mayor has a “secret love child” with special needs that the candidate has been hiding for years! The same day, Cookie’s daughter, a freshman in college, returns home, after only a few months away, and never wants to go back to school while revealing her own secret! Cookie has to figure out who leaked the secrets, wrangle and spin an election from a negative to a positive and do what she can to get her daughter back on track in life and school, but can Cookie do it?
Emily Breeze’s Title Nine Toxic queer friendships ferment on the Vassar Women's Rugby team after their star player is the subject of a title nine investigation based on their nonbinary identity.
Laura Winters’ Coronation Coronation casts its eye into our near political future: Furious that Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has lost her presidential bid in 2040 to a known embezzler, the current first lady and two female senators have a so-crazy-it-just-might-work idea to create a position of power that can only be held by a non-male person: The Queen of the United States. As centuries pass, the role of the Queen morphs into an inarguably American hybrid of power, fame, and royalty that would be unrecognizable to the women who dreamed her up.
Nedra Roberts’ They Must Be Women Now They Must Be Women Now celebrates five women at Miss Althea’s Bridal Boutique and Bail Bonds in Half Way, Georgia as they wrestle with some of the “prisons” that threaten them. The title, taken from Sophocles’ Antigone, emphasizes the sisterhood of women transcending time and place.
Bethany Dickens’ Concordia Two women, adrift on a space vessel, try to complete their mission of programming an AI with the knowledge of what it once meant to be "human" - but when one woman begins telling fairy tales, the AI's perception of humanity begins to change.
Jan Rosenberg’sI Miss You (& I Love You & I Hate You & F#*k You) A laundry room with a mysterious portal may be the key to healing the grieving residents of an apartment building.
Victoria Fragnito’s With Dignity If you knew you were dying, wouldn't you want a say in how you go? Marti is faced with the task of telling her Italian-Catholic family that she is taking advantage of her state's new Death with Dignity law. Join the Antonelli family for the most uncomfortable Sunday Dinner they've ever had.
Grace Parker’sWhy We Have Book Club Every month, college friends Mac, Audrey, Lia, and Sarah meet for Book Club to talk about literature (their lives), favorite authors (each other), and to analyze plot and character (to drink.). Through book club meetings, phone calls, and therapy sessions, the play follows the four women over the course of four years as they grow, get married, grapple with sexual identity, have children, lose family members, and fail/succeed at loving each other. A play about the closeness and danger of intimate female friendships. Half in a world of full-hearted and quick paced naturalistic realism, and half in the hazy, strange poetic place we go to when confronting ourselves. A comedic shot to the heart.
Fall 2019 Susan Kathryn Hefti’s Queen of the Bonackers When their entire way of life is threatened by a depleted fishing stock and an overheated real estate market on steroids, an ancient community of East End denizens discovers the true meaning of family, roots and loyalty while learning what it really means to be a Bonacker.
Serena Berman’s The Difference Between Big Girls and Little Girls Miriam is living in New York City and writing feminist essays online when she finally comes to terms with a dark childhood memory. Returning to her small East Texas town, she realizes her own trauma may be nothing compared to the experiences of the childhood best friend she left behind. Can she help? Should she help? Or does the isolation of trauma and the loves we sacrifice to heal create a barrier too thick to cross?
Bailey Jordan Garcia’s Tvilah (or Arriving Where She Left) When she has disappeared, seven of the most important people in her life gather at Bethesda to try to bring her back.
Erica Mann’sCarm When fourteen-year-old Iris receives a scholarship to the prestigious Karnstein Academy, she discovers that her education will still come at a price.
Kaitlin Mackenzie’s Our Famous Friend Elizabeth and Gio have lived their whole lives in the same suburban town. When their childhood friend Charlotte -- now a semi-successful film actor -- returns home for the first time in twenty years, she brings with her a tangle of resentments, insecurities, and longings. Now a single afternoon visit will force them all to question their own versions of the past, and look with new eyes toward the future.
Rachel Luann Strayer’sSongbird Sometimes we do not choose to be silent; sometimes we are bullied into silence by the ones we love. Jess is about to find out that true compassion for another person can bring her voice back, but only if she chooses to use it.
Alex Dremann’s The Cure When her twenty-four year old son wills himself to death to donate all his organs, Joan goes on a quest to understand why. Along the way, she meets five of the organ recipients who all seem to remind her of different parts of her son’s personality, but it’s not until she meets her son’s heart that she finally learns the truth.
Stephen Kaplan’s Tracy Jones Tracy Jones has rented out the back "party room" of Jones Street Bar and Grill: the Place for Wings and Things, a typical chain restaurant. Tracy Jones is throwing a party to which she's invited every woman in the world who is also named Tracy Jones. Tracy Jones has been sitting for over an hour alone, nursing her Diet Coke, waiting for any other Tracy Joneses to show up. Tracy Jones' epic loneliness is about to be tested beyond anything she ever imagined.
Winter/Spring 2019 Bella Poynton’sThe Mighty Maisie Penny, a young woman from out of town stumbles upon a strange trailer park in the middle of nowhere, Michigan. There, Penny meet's Maisie, local misfit who is, quite literally, out of this world.
Brianna Keller’s Turn the Page When Heather returns home after losing her job and her carefully pieced together life, she finds her newly converted Wiccan mother obsessively planning for the upcoming Beltane festival and her grandmother making plans to reunite with the aliens she claims abducted her as a child. As these three generations of women reconcile with fantasy and feminism, a ragtag group of neighborhood kids will stop at nothing to cause them misery.
Jennifer O'Grady’sEllery Becca's life sucks, or at least that's what she believes. She hates her psychic abilities and is being haunted by her dead but still-critical mother and overly involved grandmother. But when a dead young woman appears and urgently needs help, Becca must confront some difficult truths about her own life.
Darcy Parker Bruce’s the wolf you feed Julia, recently separated, has just moved into the rundown Shady Pines motel at the edge of a national park. Outside, a pack of wolves is wondering if she wants to hang out. Inside, everything she used to know is becoming something other-than. A toothbrush becomes a handful of chives, a bottle of shampoo is an owl that refuses to leave the shower, and a stack of papers that demand a signature stubbornly remain just that.
Raechel Segal’s Dykes on Wheels Jen Whitmore is more than just a Frida Kahlo-loving lesbian feminist—she’s also bipolar. After her first manic episode, she must find a way to take her life back. Her method? Roller derby. Will Jen join the Dykes on Wheels, or will she fall on the flat-track?
M.J. Moneymaker’s Sailors Club Four women join the US Navy hoping for an adventure that will accelerate their lives and instead learn what it means to ‘forge’ a sailor.
Fall 2018 Claire Zajdel’sSpinny, Twirly Things When fifteen year-old Violet and her friends learn that their coach is moving away, the stress of losing someone triggers unresolved issues, which for Violet may be something violent.
Lauren D'Errico’s Hannah and the Archaeologist and the Deep Sea Diver and the Helicopterist Recall the Instance in Which Hannah Repaired the Roof As Hannah reconnects with her childhood best friends, she is reminded once again of her problems with memory. While her friends reflect on the good times in detail, Hannah consults an archaeologist, a deep sea diver, and a helicopterist for help to remember just one moment. William Duell’sShadow Play A reporter for her mega-church's magazine interviews her next assignment, allegedly the oldest living American, and an unequivocal atheist.
Jacqueline Bircher’s The Rule of Thirds Years after the death of their mother, sisters Leslie and Stef return to Staten Island to clean out the childhood home their widowed father left behind. When their estranged younger sister Christine arrives to claim her share of the estate, the three women find themselves unearthing not just family heirlooms, but the deep secrets and harsh realities of their past lives and decisions.
Ellen Margolis’Crooked Numbers Woodstock, New York. 1979. Fifteen-year-old Dusty has been set aside for a while, sent to live with her Aunt Fran while her father awaits a new baby with his young wife. Fran, her hands more than full with a struggling business and a dying partner, takes Dusty in for a bit of money that she wouldn't otherwise accept from her brother--while Dusty is mainly in it for the proximity to the Baseball Hall of Fame.
Amy Tofte’sParts and Pieces Two estranged siblings meet to negotiate an inheritance and repair years of misunderstanding between them. Particularly, one sibling's transition to gender neutral.
Winter/Spring 2018 Mathilde Dratwa’s Milk and Gall Vera gives birth to a shape-shifting baby on election night, and attempts to navigate the chaos of that first year as a new mom amid political turmoil.
Susan Hansell’sAn Ocean of Bees In a post-apocalyptic future, four characters survive to represent the human species. How will they find their humanity?
Pauline David-Sax’s How We Survived An elderly grandmother, a German Jew who escaped to the United States in the 1930s, moves into a nursing home as her adult daughter takes charge of cleaning out her apartment. Questions are answered and secrets are unearthed, as mother and daughter consider what it means, and what it takes, to be a survivor.
Jamie Rubenstein’s Sam, Inc. Inside a young woman's mind, office politics threaten to undermine the company at large.
Benjamin Colon’s Dear Ivanka; or The Querida Eva Play: A Work of Fiction In an alternate timeline within an alternate universe, Eva Trump and Elsie Clinton have been best friends for years. Now in their 30s, their friendship is pushed to the limit.
Fall 2017 Alan Olejniczak's Transgress Transgress is a one-act play on the detainment of Dora Ratjen, Nazi Olympic athlete and gold metal winning woman's high jumper, who was later arrested for impersonating a man.
Rachel Mann'sSay It Out Loud At a family gathering that brings home three adult siblings and one trans friend, a feminist professor and a food writer contend with their newly-devout Orthodox daughter.
Claudia Haas'Making Some Noise Three sisters gather for the anniversary of their mother’s death on 9/11. Having sat shiva every year since 2001, they ask themselves: what is the make-up of a life? And what happens when one no longer wishes to continue the tradition of grieving?
Lolly Ward's Theory of Nothing Once upon a space-time continuum, a scientist married a sculptor and had two kids who lied. In one wild night of discovery, secrets unravel to reveal lost ambitions, lost loves, and lost minds.
Lynsey Murdoch's The Roar A tense noir one hour TV drama that explores the themes of gender equality, class and acceptance through the lives of two undercover police women in 1920s London.
Juliany Taveras' Desarollo As kids growing up in New York City, Nelly, Alaida, and Sol spent hot summer days daring, dancing, and documenting their way across boroughs, rivers, and storefronts. Ten years later, time has seemed to warp everything, from their once-indestructible friendship to the landscape of the streets they used to call home.
Ethan Warren'sThe Healing in the Air A skeptical recent college graduate travels to the remote Colorado institute of the mysterious scientist Dr. Emilia Oxendine to confront the doctor over unanswered questions in the recent suicide of Bridget’s father.
Winter/Spring 2017 Lavinia Roberts’ The Will After the death of her father, a young woman and her stepmother's relationship turns sinister.
Brooke Berman’sHurricane Now 40 year old former punk bandmates navigate motherhood, friendship, and the changing landscape of a neighborhood once known for its Bohemia, now known for affluent, Liberal, Prius-driving hipsters.
Monday, March 27th Callan Stout's you do not look Trauma is a ghost in your brain. This play is a ghost story about trauma and survival. This play is also about selling encyclopedias, for knowledge.
Yusef Miller's 'TASHA It is (an alternate) February 2017. President Waters has issued a law denying the burial of a man, shot by a local authority, 'in self-defense.' But what will happen when it is revealed that the murdered man is cousin to 'Tasha Brown and that 'Tasha plans to break a law made by an old family ally, President Waters, herself?
Brenda Foley’s Fallen Wings A woman who comfortably resides on the sidelines of life is forced to confront her capacity for resilience as she embarks on a road trip to discover the truth behind a childhood friend's murder.
Marcus Scott's Tumbleweed Following an interracial family living in a townhouse within the Morningside Park area of NYC's Upper West Side over the course of a weekend, Tumbleweed is a slice of life drama about a young girl whose natural hair and blooming womanhood causes controversy in the household.
David Valdes Greenwood's The Last Catastrophist A harassed climate scientist finds that her final remaining peer has tracked her to a hide-out in Iceland. A game of cat-and-mouse ensues -- with global consequences.
Eugenie Carabatsos’ We Will Not Describe the Conversation Inspired by a missing scene in Crime and Punishment, We Will Not Describe the Conversation follows a massage therapist whose newest client has come with the news that her estranged brother has committed a heinous crime--killing and elderly woman with an axe--and is nowhere to be found. The women try to piece together how this happened, while also uncovering their own dark desires and the fear that they will one day turn out like him.
Bara Swain's Providence Celebrates the resilience of the human spirit when faced with uncertainty. Over the course of one year, we follow 9 NYC denizens through their brushes with love, life and death.
Suzanne Egan's Homestyle The story of a young woman trying to earn her adoptive family's respect by pursuing a career as a cook.
John Barrow’s Lillian, Paula, Carson Lillian Smith, author of Strange Fruit, has just returned home from the hospital. Her partner Paula Snelling is caring for her, and the phone rings. They learn that Carson McCullers will arrive that afternoon for a visit. Later that night another phone call will change Carson's life.
Kristine M. Reyes’ Eggs on Ice At Eggs On Ice, freezing your eggs has never been more convenient, affordable -- or fabulous! Hit the snooze button on your biological clock while you focus on your career, and let us take care of the rest. Your future's safe with us, ladies - we'll make sure of that.
Winter/Spring 2016 Deborah Magid’sDenial (is not a river in Egypt) A "loopy dark comedy" in which two women confront each other when they find out that they are married to the same, recently deceased, man.
Lily Akerman'sSwimming A play in which a transitioning teenager tries to explain to their grandmother, a woman with strong opinions about femininity, why they are having surgery.
M.J. Moneymaker’sHick A historical fiction screenplay inspired by the real-world relationship between reporter Lorena Hickok and Eleanor Roosevelt.
Natalie L. Sacks’sHey Sexy: An Environmental Parable A new play about a dying sun, a reluctant protagonist, an eccentric professor, a sword, and a lobbyist to the gods.
Francesca Pazniokas'Dog Alice moves in with Penny and her dog Elmo, only to find that the situation and her new controlling roommates are more than she anticipated.
Kristina Poe's The Idea of Me Examines the complicated relationship between an overprotective mother, a daughter recently released from a mental institution, and a friend from the daughter's past.
Eve Lederman'sLet it Come Down A play in which the relationship between a therapist and a client takes an unhealthy turn.
Alicia Dutton'sSouthern Sirens A screenplay in which a beach vacation becomes decidedly less relaxing with some reconnaissance work.