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CROWN OF SHADOWS IS NOMINATED FOR A HELEN HAYES AWARD!

All of us at The Inkwell are busting with pride for Jason Gray Platt, whose play CROWN OF SHADOWS has been nominated for BEST PLAY of 2012.


AREN'T WE ALL EXPLORERS IN PLAYMAKING?

Journalist Manny Strauss poses a question about playgoers...are they really explorers?


Plays and Playwrights

Tiffany Antone

Twigs and Bone

Showcase 2011

Moira returns to her parents crumbling home in the middle of nowhere to discover that they are teetering on the edge of madness. Moira must try to pull her parents out from the brink and out of the muck as terrible family secrets are revealed.

 

Greg Beuthin

A Time Upon

InkReading 2008

Two old women, Gran and Mum, eke out their lives in a forgotten corner of a futuristic metropolis.  They are barely aware of the passing days until a young woman and her strange traveling companion-cum-pet enter their lives. This strange family must do battle with an evil shadow and his crony, who want to get at what lies beneath the decrepit courtyard that is Gran and Mum’s home.

 

Melissa Blackall

The F Word

Inkubator Production 2009, InkReading 2008, InkReading 2007

What is the dirtiest word in the English language? Playwright Melissa Blackall presents us with a biting commentary on America’s obsession with FAT as we follow Belly, Toothpick, Huge, Lean, Voluptuous, Stout, and Blimp through their search for a perfect size — physically, psychically, and spiritually.

 

Rebecca Bossen

Blue Straggler

InkReading 2011, Showcase 2010

Lisa — a gifted astronomer — disregards her dissertation in astronomy to find the mathematical formula that will bring back her great love Clarissa — a rebellious chocolatier. Clarissa also fights the forces of nature to reunite with Lisa. In their struggle to recapture love and find answers to the unknowable, Lisa and Clarissa may rip apart the fabric of the universe. Read more about the InkReading process from Inkwell dramaturg Mary Watters. Rebecca shares her experience the showcase reading here.

 

Andy Bragen

The Hairy Dutchman

Showcase 2009

Atop an ancient dump on the island of Manhattan, eight cracked and decaying tennis courts serve as a battleground for the hopes and dreams of an entire community. When the New York Department of Public Works threatens these courts with extinction, a ragtag group of players must hit back, and hard.

 

J. Stephen Brantley

Furbelow

Showcase 2011

An imaginary realm — and its chic, impeccably dressed ruler — are turned upside down by the decision of a simple vintner to give away a single grape.

 

Mia Chung

You for Me for You

InkReading 2011, Showcase 2010

Two sisters make a terrible bargain with a smuggler in order to flee the poverty and disease that shape all life in North Korea. But what will these desperate sisters really gain, and how much are they willing to pay, in their perilous journey to the Free World?

 

Clarence Coo

A Beautiful Province

Inkreading 2009, Showcase 2009

Unexpectedly fired from his job, a high school French teacher takes off with a shy young man in search of the most beautiful province, a journey that leads them through the idiosyncrasies of language, of love and sex, to the place where they can face their fears, their fantasies, and the future. Read an interview with Clarence here.

Kristen DeWulf

Lullabye

Showcase 2008

In a Chinese restaurant, three couples grapple with the challenges of parenthood.

 

Doug Dolcino

Monument

InkReading 2010, Showcase 2009

Woe! Woe to the House of Liebert! Nothing escapes the ever-vigilant gaze of the mailmen of Arbythnia - certainly not the crippling stagnation of Herman Liebert, Civil Engineer. Can Liebert complete the commissioned monument for the people of Tarzania while plagues plague the populace, while minefields undermine momentum, while packages stand unpacked and missives sit missed? This Civil Engineer is Civilization’s only hope – woe unto us all! Read Doug’s response to his Inkwell experience, and here’s more from his dramaturg, Jenn Book Haselswerdt.

 

J.D. Eames

Living in the Twilight of our Three Selves

Showcase 2011

As the world appears to be ending, George and Maria hole up in a run-down hotel room to pursue their passions — writing for George and bird watching for Maria. But can they find any purpose in living when everything — including their hearts and minds — breaks down?

 

Reginald Edmunds

The Ordained Smile of Sadie May Jenkins

Showcase 2010

Sadie May Jenkins has been living in a decaying and soot-covered shotgun house in Houston for God knows how long. She scrubs the walls of what once was her home, trying to decypher the strange words she finds beneath the soot, while also looking for the remnants of her smile. She befriends Ro, a girl hardened by the neighborhood's twilight streets, and together the two of them confront past and present temptations.

 

Fengar Gael

Island of Outcasts

Showcase 2009

On the mythical island of Dolphina in the Caribbean — amidst the storms brought on by a warming planet — two marine biologists hatch a plan to save humanity.

 

Molly Goforth

(Don’t) Look at Me

Showcase 2011

Desperate to catch wealthy husbands, two New York debutantes deploy “Dolly,” a robot cleverly designed to be the perfect man-catching trap. Drop dead sexy and seemingly dumb, Dolly draws men like flies… but what happens when Dolly gets wise, gets mad, and gets even?

 

Jonathan Goldberg

Deus Machina Ex or Eleanor Roosevelt versus the God Machine

Showcase 2011

The indomitable Eleanor Roosevelt fights the forces of evil in the form of the Wild Man of Borneo to stop a God Machine from destroying the world as we know it.

 

Tim Guillot

We Fight We Die

Showcase 2010

The infamous Q is a rebel vandal artist leaving a beautiful, terrific trail of graffiti art wherever he goes. When he’s caught for the 23rd time tagging where he shouldn’t, tthe mayor offers him a deal that could give him freedom or steal that which is most precious to him.

 

James Hesla

Graves’ Rule

Showcase 2007

A wide-ranging discussion of the parameters of reality engulf a group of friends.

 

Lisa M. Hodsoll

Erasmus

Showcase 2009

In the dark days leading up to and beyond the Protestant Reformation, the philosopher Erasmus must carefully walk the line between intellectual integrity and political survival as popes and kings war, as his friend Thomas More sees visions, and as everyone around him reverts to their most brutish, bestial form.

 

Kristin Idazsak

Fugue (for Particle Accelerator)

Showcase 2011

Schrodinger’s Cat fools around with time and space as a physicist wrestles with the difficult decision of her life, one that forever alters the past and present of a mysterious stranger, and threatens the future of her life with the man she loves.

 

Q. Terah Jackson

20Twenty

Showcase 2009

When Ol’d was young, hip hop meant revolution.  When his daughter Nuia’s record topped the charts, hip hop was a hot commodity.  When Skip – the third generation in this family of groundbreaking artists – finds her grandpa’s old-school turntable and her mother’s diamond-studded thong, she sees the family legacy with new clarity.  But will insight into the past shape Skip’s choices for the future — both for herself, and for her art?

 

Krista Knight

Clementine and the Cyber Ducks

InkReading 2010, Showcase 2009

Two eras built on lust and money — the California gold rush and the Silicon Valley tech boom — collide when Clementine, a prospector and daughter of a miner-49er, falls hard for a tech geek with dreams of striking it rich with an Internet search engine. But to whom will Clementine be lost and gone forever – her father, her lover, or both? The choice is sure hard to make with greedy ducks egging you on….

 

Adam Kraar

Empire of the Trees

Showcase 2009

In 1963 — in the last year of America’s Camelot — a young wife reaches out to a poor bookseller and thief in search of her own perfect kingdom among the ancient trees of New Delhi.

 

Jennifer Maisel

Match

Showcase 2011

What would we give to feel whole, to find purpose and leave a mark? A buck? A muffin? A kidney? Leo, Ben, Maddy, and Leyla find out how much they are willing to give -- and to take -- in order to bring their lives back together in the face of dialysis, loneliness, and the possibility of death.

 

Anne M. McCaw

Beggar on his Feet

Showcase 2009

It is easy to love a king when he is the sun itself, but what about when he and his kingdom are literally falling apart? Such is the dilemma that Madame de Maintenon faces when her husband King Louis XIV loses his foot.

OK

Inkubator Production 2008, Reading 2007

As the shadows fall on Tombstone, Arizona, on the night of the most famous gunfight in the Wild West, the women of the infamous Earp brothers set out on a hunt that leads to catfights and catcalls, secrets revealed, and a showdown to rival the one that takes place at the OK Corral.

 

James McManus

Underground

Inkubator Production 2008, Reading 2007

In a small West Virginia mining community, coal is life and death. When five men get buried in Mine Five, Princess Grace Award winner McManus takes us into their pasts and through their present - both above and below ground.

 

Cameron McNary

Of Dice and Men (formerly, Gamers)

Showcase 2009

John is a 30-year-old man playing role-playing games in his mother’s basement. The night he decides to tell his fellow gamers that he is leaving town, another member, Jason, drops a bombshell. As all hell breaks loose, can John mend fences and heal wounds with a final game of D&D?

 

Anna Moench

Great Eastern

Showcase 2010

The cicadas invade every 17 years across the East Coast. There is someone else who emerges every 17 years, and that is Cora, a renowned entomologist who studies the mysterious life of the cicada, one of her many research projects around the world. Every 17 years, she returns to John Hopkins University to Douglas, a sometimes friend and colleague.  As the events of 2004 move forward in the play, the events of 1987 move backward, and we see how two lab assistants, Jane and Evan, become entranced with the cicadas, and how they join and are forever changed by the cycle of reconnection and betrayal between Cora and Douglas.

The Pillow Book

Showcase 2009

If marriage is a sacred agreement to love someone forever, what happens when two people cannot agree on the most important decision to have a child? From the bedroom to the Serengeti, Deb and John wrestle with the complexities of commitment, the uncertainty of the future, and the impact of the past on the decisions of the present.

 

Steve Moulds

The Body

Showcase 2011

An uneasy relationship between a stepfather and stepdaughter tips toward madness when a mysterious and menacing doll is left at the front door.

 

Henry Murray

Monkey Adored

Inkreading 2010, Showcase 2009

It's a dangerous world for animals. That’s what Sonny the monkey, Brown Spot the dog, Madeleine the cat, Elaine the ostrich, and Penguinito find time and time again as they search for love and purpose in the underdog fight against the pernicious, bewildering ways of man.

 

Matthew Paul Olmos

i put the fear of mexico in ‘em

Showcase 2009

A chance encounter in the back alleys of Tijuana bring three couples together across borders of wealth, opportunity, and love... while setting in motion a confrontation that will tear their world’s apart.

 

Julie Taiwo Oni

Tether

InkReading 2009

Lach and Lam are 15 year-old twin girls — one black and the other white — who live their lives on the tetherball court. Like all sisters, they squabble and make up…like all twins, they are each other’s mirrors – and opposites.

 

Kristopher Frithjof Peterson

Where the Whangdoodle Sings

Showcase 2011

In this journey through largely forgotten American folk stories, meet the Whangdoodle: a foul-mouthed, inebriated hobo bird who sings the Saddest Song Ever. He’s got one chance to save himself from total obscurity by convincing a sad sack artist to memorialize his image — and the folk America of another time.

 

Jason Gray Platt

Crown of Shadows (formerly strive/seek/find)

InkReading 2009

All of Athens has been waiting for the return of Odysseus… no more so than his son, Telemachus, who is now coming of age, keenly aware of the shadow he lives in and under. But what happens now when all of Athens is ready to move on? Can Telemachus come out from the shadows, take control and finally wear the mantle of king and hero?

The National Lottery

Showcase 2011

Six lucky people show us a slice of “real life” behind the scenes of a reality television show that they’ve been chosen to join. As the show progresses, and “reality” breaks down, each person muses on storytelling, relationship, and what is truly satisfying for the mind and soul.

 

Shaun Raviv

Coma, Patient

Showcase 2008

An ethical dilemma emerges when a comatose patient faces the consequences of his actions.

 

Monica Raymond

The Owl Girl

Showcase 2009

The unending war in the Middle East has torn two families apart. But when they converge on the house they both claim as home, they find themselves fighting for the same cause, led by a hyperactive boy, a young man in love with peace, and a girl who can turn herself into an owl.

 

Alexis Roblan

Genesis

Showcase 2009

Cain wants nothing more than to please his parents and God…until he learns the hard way that blood is far more precious than wheat. It’s the oldest story of brother against brother as Cain discovers a dangerous world of sex, jealousy, unfairness and fate… and how to grapple with terrible actions and consequences beyond your control.

 

Janine Salinas

Angel of the Desert

Showcase 2011

Francisco, a winged teenage oddity, founds himself utterly alone after war destroys his family and the Mexican village where he grew up. With the moon as his guardian, he embarks on a perilous journey along the rails to find his mother in California.

 

Sarah Sander

Fly Over Country

Showcase 2011

Cate and Eli must face the tangled relationships they left behind — and the unspoken unease they both feel now — when Cate’s teenage niece visits after the suicide of her mother.

Seven Dreams of Her

Showcase 2008

Three people struggle to come to terms with their relationship they once had with one another.

 

Christin Siems

Darwin’s Cousin

Showcase 2010

Layne is given everything she thought she ever wanted after in-vitro fertilization. But with that wish fulfilled comes a horrible choice...to choose among five unborn babies...to decide who is weak, who is strong, who will be happy, who will be miserable...to choose who will survive.

 

Katharine Sherman

Cassandra

Showcase 2011

In this adaption of the Greek myth of the inscrutable oracle, a young girl is plagued by terrifying visions of war… with no way to keep the inevitable destruction and chaos from happening.

 

Stephen Spotswood

Maddy Lee: A Southern Tragedy

Showcase 2010

Maddy Lee is a bootlegger's daughter and voodoo sorceress who knows all the dark, knotted secrets of the bayou. But when she falls for Jason, the son of the richest man in town, she gives up everything to be with him. And in that moment of sacrifice, Maddy unleashes a terrible spell.

 

Susan Soon He Stanton

Cygnus

InkReading 2009

Cydney's stomach has been giving her trouble ever since her guardian angel rescued her from pyromaniac hitchhikers... and weird things just keep happening. Cydney finds feathers on her doorstep and eggs in unexpected places. Truth, fantasy and myth collide as Cydney, her Mama and her new boyfriend grapple with immaculate conception and the delusions we spin to protect ourselves.

 

Joe Waechter

Lake Untersee

Showcase 2011

A troubled teenager longs to leave his parents and their twisted relationships behind to find Antartica’s Lake Untersee — where the love of his life is trapped beneath layers and layers of ice.

 

David L. Williams

Spake

Showcase 2009

A snowflake falling Russia obliterates a spoken language from the face of the earth… a grad student in New York City reads a forbidden phrase aloud from a rare book… a genius hung for murder a century ago resurfaces in dreams. And so a chain of supernatural events is unleashed that could lead us to the edge of disaster – or ultimate understanding.

 

Jonathan Yukich

Balls

Showcase 2009

This is the day to escape Balls, Alabama: the fair's in town (with the promise of loot and a two-headed cow) and Bear Bryant, the greatest coach in college football, has come to scout the local team. So two brothers scheme — with the help of a wily cheerleader and a mysterious stranger — to hightail it out of the backwater without losing their marbles or their balls.

 

Nick Zagone

Howard’s Hand

Showcase 2011

When a Russian submarine goes down in Hawaiian waters, President Nixon sees a chance to realize his legacy: raise the sub, cow the Russkies, and end the cold war. But he's got to reach out the richest man on earth, Howard Hughes, for the technological know-how to accomplish his mission. What happens when two of the most enigmatic, scheming, and amoral figures in history join forces?

The Missing Piece

Showcase 2009

In the aftermath of the eruption of Mount Saint Helen, as ash blankets all of Oregon, a young boy struggles to put the pieces of his broken family together… with a little help from a Playboy Playmate and Hugh Hefner himself.