August 1, 2017
September 7-12, 2017
ANNIE JUMP AND THE LIBRARY OF HEAVEN, 2017
Reina Hardy is a playwright. Her plays, which usually contain magic and sometimes contain science, have been seen across the country, including at Rorschach Theatre in DC, the Vortex in Austin, and the 2013 NNPN National New Play Showcase. She’s a Michener Fellow, winner of the 2014 KCACTF TYA Prize, finalist for the Terrence McNally Prize and the recipient of an Interact 20/20 Commission. She can make things happen with her mind.
ABOUT WRITING THE PLAY
I wrote “Annie Jump” in about three days in August, while the Perseids were falling (yes, really). I was on deadline for a staged reading that I scheduled before I’d written a single page of the script. This… is not how it usually happens, but man was it fun!
As for the idea- years ago, I heard an NPR story about a man who maintained a website inviting aliens to contact him, and it stuck with me. That summer, while researching a different play, I read a science history book called “Coming of Age in the Milky Way” that described a theoretical concept much like the Library of Heaven. The two ideas sort of collided, then Annie and Althea showed up from who knows where, already sniping at each other, already the best of friends. I sat on the idea for a couple of months until I had the time in my schedule to write it. It brought together so many things that I've been thinking about for so long, and honestly it felt like a gift.
Annie Jump is a 13-year-old science genius whose alien-obsessed father is the laughingstock of Strawberry, KS. One night in August, a meteor falls, and Annie meets Althea, an intergalactic supercomputer that manifests itself in the form of a mean girl with really great hair. Althea’s here to help Annie take humanity from the earth to the stars, but being the Chosen One isn't all glory. What is Althea hiding? And what will Annie have to sacrifice to fulfill her destiny? A play for all audiences about finding your place in the universe, and intelligent life in your neighborhood.
9/7 - Toured Reading at Waukesha Civic Theatre @ 7PM
9/8 - Toured Reading at UW Parkside @ 7PM
9/9 - Festival Reading at The Broadway Theatre Center @ 7PM
Directed by Mallory Metoxen
Featuring Madeleine Farley, Sean Anthony Jackson, Bryce Lord, Ericka Wade, & Rachael Zientek
THE ENDURANCE OF LIGHT, 2017
Amanda Petefish-Schrag is an Assistant Professor of Theatre at Iowa State University where she teaches courses in performance and theatre history. Her professional credits include work as a playwright, director, puppeteer, (and mom to Celia and Eli). Her playwriting has been produced at festivals in Chicago, New York, Los Angeles, Kansas City, Minneapolis, Madison, and Iowa City, and has been published by Playscripts, Inc. Amanda is a member of the Dramatists Guild.
ABOUT WRITING THE PLAY
Ten years ago, I experienced a loss that countless women before me had already been through, (and countless more women will someday face), – a miscarried pregnancy. I realized in a new way why miscarriage proves such profoundly difficult subject matter. It sits squarely at the intersection of numerous existentially-anxious issues - sex, death, religion, science, when life begins, and the very definition of life itself. Yet in the years following my miscarriage, that needling question in the back of my brain, “Can we somehow talk about this?”, became the impetus for writing The Endurance of Light.
As I quickly discovered, grappling with miscarriage in the public sphere requires plunging into uncomfortable collisions headlong. Exploring these intersections and attempting to reveal their inherent tensions; making them tangible, potent, and accessible, became the heartbeat of the play itself.
Sophie, a scientist, refuses to leave her bed. Instead, she spends her time lost in piles of books,
trying to discover the reason for her multiple miscarriages. Her husband and her mother
desperately try to connect with her, unaware that her bedroom has become a surreal landscape where Sophie, along with Sir Ernest Shackleton and his ship, The Endurance, are perpetually trapped in the Antarctic ice. Guided by an irreverant Albert Einstein and spirited Hildegard Von Bingen, Sophie must navigate the mysterious forces that now threaten to trap her forever as past and present, faith and science, collide.
9/10 - Festival Reading at The Broadway Theatre Center @7PM
9/11 - Toured Reading at Memories Ballroom @ 7PM
9/12 - Toured Reading at Juneau Park @ 7PM
Directed by Suzan Fete
Featuring James Carrington, Flora Coker, Christopher Elst, Reva Fox, Rana Roman, & David Sapiro
DID YOU THINK I WOULD FORGET YOU?
Kelly Bancroft lives in Youngstown, Ohio, where she earned her MFA in Creative Writing. Her poetry and prose have appeared in a variety of journals. Two of her one-act plays have been produced in Youngstown and Pittsburgh - ARRIVING AT BESSIE and LOVIE’S SPRING. A short documentary based on ARRIVING AT BESSIE recently won a spot at the Cleveland International Film Festival and was featured on jezebel.com. She is currently working on a full-length play.
Directed by Jake Brockmann, Featuring Shannon Nettesheim
THE END OF THE ROAD
Claudia has had over 1100 productions in all fifty states and on five continents. Honored with 18 playwriting awards, her works have been developed through the Bonderman Symposium and the William Inge Festival among others. She’s been fortunate to have many of her plays published. She lives in White Bear Lake, MN with ducks in her garden.
Directed by Catie O'Donnell, Featuring Brittany Curran & Jordan Watson
Emma Kiel is a playwright and director from Neenah, Wisconsin. She is currently pursuing her bachelor of arts in drama at the University of Wisconsin - Stevens Point. As a writer, she has had work produced at UWSP and has contributed original work at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe.
Directed by Erin Eggers, Featuring Shannon Nettesheim, Audwin Short, & Elaine Wyler
BOLD DOROTHY, RETIRED.
Colleen O'Doherty is a writer based out of Omaha, NE. She is currently getting her MFA in play writing at the University of Nebraska at Omaha. She teaches creative writing in schools and prisons through the Nebraska Writers Collective. She has had work staged with UNO and Shelterbelt Theater in Omaha, NE. Her poetry has been published in Burnt District. She dedicates her play to all the hard-working teachers and other working-class heroes she knows.
Directed by Christopher Elst, Featuring Cara Johnston, Nathanael Press, Elodie Senetra, & Michelle Waide
I HEAR EVERYTHING
Gwendolyn Rice is a professional writer and playwright based in Madison, Wisconsin. Among other freelance projects, she currently reviews theater and performing arts events for Isthmus and The Capital Times, and has also taught playwriting workshops for Children’s Theater of Madison, Renaissance Theaterworks, and the Milwaukee Rep. She is a member of Chicago Dramatists, the American Theater Critics Association, and the Dramatists Guild.
Directed by Suzan Fete, Featuring Joe Picchetti
A ROBOT, A CLOWN and a Turban
Karen Saari’s full-length play IN A CLEARING received a staged reading in June at the Last Frontier Theatre Conference, was a 2017 finalist for the ATHE Award for Excellence in Playwriting, and was a 2015 Wisconsin Wrights winner. She’s a frequent writer/raconteur for Madison’s That’s What She Said story-share, member of Playwrights Center and a mother of two.
Directed by Mark Boergers, Featuring Danielle Levings, Nathanael Press, Elodie Senetra, & J. Keegan Siebken
Lillian Schley’s play VOWS was included in Cooperative Performance Milwaukee’s 2017 One Act Festival and a short film adapted from her play DON’T LEAVE ME HANGING has been shown at film festivals throughout the country.
Directed by Mallory Metoxen, Featuring Brittany Curran, Cara Johnston, & Rachel Zembrowski
Renaissance Theaterworks presents the Br!NK Award annually to Midwestern women playwrights to develop and advance their work. The Br!NK resident playwrights spend a week in August with a director, cast, and dramaturg workshopping their play. The plays are then presented as staged-readings for the public at the Br!NK New Play Festival.
The Br!NK Festival is unlike a traditional theatrical evening. These staged-readings are all about the playwright's work. At Br!NK, audience members are encouraged to stick around after the show and give feedback to the playwrights. You'll meet the actors and directors, and hang out with a community of people passionate about creating and enjoying art.
The Festival also consists of the Br!NK Br!efs - a collection fully staged of 10-minute plays and Playwriting Labs for aspiring or experienced playwrights.
Festival goers can enjoy as many or as few events as they choose. Stay tuned for more information about additional Festival activities!
Br!NK Resident Playwrights
These select playwrights are offered a weeklong residency to workshop their script with a director, dramaturg, and full cast; a team dedicated to researching and considering the play from every angle.
Following the residency, staged readings of the script are toured to Milwaukee-area venues, culminating in a weekend festival at the Broadway Theatre Center. After each reading we offer a guided talkback with the playwright to obtain audience feedback.
A collection of 10-minute plays by Midwestern women playwrights, performed over the Br!NK New Play Festival Weekend at the Broadway Theatre Center.
Prompts are shared on our website throughout the year, so keep an eye out for submission information! The Br!efs scripts that are chosen to be a part of the
Br!NK New Play Festival (Next Br!NK Festival: September 2018) will be fully staged.
We offer two workshops during the Festival Weekend for any and all professional or aspiring playwrights. These participatory Labs are designed to give playwrights an opportunity to ask questions, find inspiration, and develop skills.