Friday, January 25, 2013

PlayGround-LA Campaign Update... Final Week!

We're sooooo close! With just seven days left until the January 31 deadline, we've now raised $1,500 or 60% of our $2,500 Campaign goal... just $1,000 to go! We're hoping that, with your help, we can guarantee a full season of PlayGround-LA, including rounds of Monday Night PlayGround on February 11 and March 11 and possibly a Best of PlayGround celebration in April or May. Assuming we reach our goal by midnight next Thursday, we'll announce the February 11 topic Friday morning, February 1.

If you've already contributed to our year-end campaign, thank you! And if you haven't yet, please consider making your gift today! Whether $25 or $250, every gift counts!

Use the link below to make your contribution to the PlayGround-LA Year-End Campaign on Causes and receive discount ticket vouchers, free tickets and more! Or call us at (323) 992-6766 to contribute by phone. And to help even more, please share this email with friends, family and colleagues (see "forward this message", facebook, and twitter share links below) who want to help support L.A. playwrights and a stronger L.A. theatre community. Thanks for all your support!


Thursday, January 24, 2013

January People's Choice Award

The people have spoken... This month's People's Choice Award goes to Carolina Rojas Moretti for her original short play, Flight Time, presented as a staged reading at the PlayGround-LA Monday Night PlayGround January 14 performance at the Zephyr Theatre. Congratulations, Carolina!

Courtesy of Ms. Rojas Moretti, we're pleased to share the first two pages from the award-winning script. Enjoy!

by Carolina Rojas Moretti

MAGGIE—mid 20s to late 30s
MOTHER—Maggie’s Mother
FATHER—Maggie’s Father

MAGGIE stands center stage and addresses the audience.

I have a dream. An airplane crash dream. It’s recurring. If there is an airplane in my dream, that’s bad. I mean, it’s going to be a nightmare. It’s not going to go well. For me.

FATHER enters—beer in one hand, newspaper in the other—and plops down heavily on an old recliner. He drinks and reads. MOTHER enters with a deck of cards, sits on a couch, and starts dealing herself a game of solitaire. We are now in MOTHER and FATHER’s living room, but MAGGIE is not a part of their scene yet.

And it’s almost always the same series of events. Very vivid, with smells and everything. With motion.

MOTHER stands and exits into her kitchen off stage. FATHER drinks and reads.

I think to myself, “Where should I put this bag? In the overhead compartment or below my seat?”

MOTHER enters. Sits in front of cards again.

I have to plan the next few hours of flight time carefully because I’m confined, you know? Stuck, in a way. I’m in the middle seat, with a woman at the window and a large man on the aisle, so getting up…it’s a challenge.

FATHER finishes his beer and shakes the empty bottle. MOTHER sees the empty bottle, stands, takes the empty from FATHER and exits into the kitchen.

If I leave an item in the overhead and the captain refuses to turn off the “Fasten Seatbelt” sign—like they do, all the time—then I won’t have this item, this thing that I need for the flight.

MOTHER enters with a full beer and hands it to FATHER. FATHER drinks and reads. MOTHER sits for a moment. Then she stands and exits into the kitchen again.

If I put a bag under the seat in front of me, there is a good chance I won’t have enough legroom and…

But her speech fades away as she tries to come to the point. FATHER reads. Drinks.
MOTHER enters. She sits at her cards.


Help us complete our inaugural season of PlayGround-LA and the Monday Night PlayGround staged reading series at the Zephyr Theatre... click here to contribute to the PlayGround-LA Year-End Campaign on Causes by January 31, 2013.

Thursday, January 10, 2013

December People's Choice Award

The people have spoken... Last month's People's Choice Award goes to Timothy Hill for his original short play, The Other Shop Around the Corner, presented as a staged reading at the PlayGround-LA Monday Night PlayGround December 10 performance at the Zephyr Theatre. Congratulations, Tim!

Courtesy of Mr. Hill, we're pleased to share the first two pages from the award-winning script. Enjoy!

by Timothy Hill

CARLA - A newly hired sales clerk, 30’s or 40’s, brash.
CUSTOMER - Female, 40’s, well-to do, supercilious.
MRS. STEEL - 40’s-50’s, the shop owner, pragmatic, earthy.
JAMES HENRY - 50’s, 60’s, poetic type, affable, eccentric.

CARLA, behind a counter in a gift shop, gabs on her cell phone as she completes a transaction for an increasingly impatient CUSTOMER.

(Into phone.) I know. I wish they’d take Christmas and push it off a
cliff. Then I wouldn’t need a second job just to afford gifts for everybody. (She hands the CUSTOMER a credit card slip to sign.)

Sign here, please. (The CUSTOMER signs.)

(Back into the phone.) It’s retarded. You buy shit nobody wants. They have to say “thank you,” and “oh, how thoughtful,” and what they’re really hoping for is a gift receipt so they can exchange it.

(Looking offended.) Excuse me.

(To the CUSTOMER.) Oh, sorry. Did you want a gift receipt?

During this, MRS. STEEL, Carla’s BOSS appears from the back. She holds boxes, invoices, and seems harried as she overhears...

No. But maybe somewhere in the course of your phone conversation, you could squeeze in a moment to wrap it? Or is that too “retarded?”

(Feigning regret.) Mmm, yeah, no, we don’t really do that.

Carla! Of course we do that. Get off the phone, please.

Sorry, Mrs. Steel. (Into Phone) I’ll call you later.

(To the customer) I meant, uh, I kinda suck at wrapping, that’s all. Might take a few minutes.

Never mind. Just give me the box and the paper, I’ll wrap it myself.

You’re making a good choice.

Carla gives her the stuff. THE CUSTOMER heads out as MRS. STEEL calls after her.

Thank you for shopping with us. Happy holidays!

MRS. STEEL glares at Carla.

What is wrong with you? “I kinda suck at wrapping?” That’s half your job description, Carla.

Let her go across the way to the Paper Source - they do a much better job and she can obviously afford it.


Sorry. Okay, I guess I am a little Grinchy this year. Is it weird that I just want to spend Christmas at home with my cat?


Join us for the next Monday Night PlayGround on Monday, January 14, at the Zephyr Theatre and choose your own favorite. Click here for more info.

Friday, January 4, 2013

PlayGround-LA Jan 14 Topic Announced!

PlayGround-LA continues its inaugural season and celebrated monthly staged reading series, Monday Night PlayGround, on January 14 at the Zephyr Theatre with six original short plays inspired by this month’s topic… I HAVE A DREAM…! Los Angeles-based playwrights have until 2pm on Tuesday to write and submit scripts inspired by the topic. Playwrights are encouraged to be creative and use the topic as a jumping-off point with all forms of theatrical expression encouraged. For submission guidelines, visit The six finalists will be presented as script-in-hand staged readings at 8pm on January 14. For tickets, subscriptions or for more information, the public can call (323) 992-6766, email or go online at

Ten days before the designated Monday, a topic is announced and emerging playwrights in the Greater Los Angeles Area have until 2pm the following Tuesday to submit a short script. A panel of judges selects six winners, whose entries are cast over the weekend and then rehearsed with the area’s best professional actors and directors in a whirlwind ninety minutes each before being performed as script-in-hand staged readings. Previous topics include “Origin Story,” “Sea-Change,” and last month’s “Holiday Spirit.”

The mission of PlayGround-LA is to support the development of significant new local voices for the theatre. More than just a play development program, PlayGround-LA focuses on the creation of a true theatre community by nurturing the collaborative process between first-time or early development playwrights, and established professional actors and directors. With a particular focus on the ten-minute form, PlayGround creates a microcosm of the greater theatre scene, allowing for experimentation and risk-taking as well as the honing of style and technique.

PlayGround-LA is the first regional expansion of the celebrated Bay Area playwright incubator and theatre community hub, PlayGround(SF). PlayGround was launched in San Francisco in 1994 by co-founders Jim Kleinmann, Brighde Mullins and Denise Shama. In 1996, Kleinmann became PlayGround’s first Artistic Director. Since its founding, PlayGround has developed and staged more than 650 original ten-minute plays by 185 Bay Area early-career writers and has commissioned 48 full-length plays by distinguished PlayGround alumni. In the process of staging those works, PlayGround has helped to identify some of the leading emerging writers and, at the same time, has engendered the creation of a true community of theatre artists, bringing together hundreds of Bay Area actors, directors and playwrights. For most if not all of the participating writers, PlayGround is the first professional staging their work has received and serves as their introduction into the professional theatre community.

PlayGround’s alumni have gone on to win both local and national honors for their short and full-length work, including recognition at the Humana Festival, Sundance Festival, Bay Area Playwrights Festival, New York International Fringe Festival, Aurora Theatre Company’s Global Age Project, and Samuel French Off-Off Broadway Short Play Festival, among others. Directors and actors participating in PlayGround are among some of the most distinguished local theatre professionals, regularly working on leading Bay Area stages such as A.C.T., Berkeley Rep, Magic Theatre, San Jose Rep, and California Shakespeare Theater, among others.

For more information, visit or follow PlayGround on Facebook ( and Twitter (

PlayGround-LA’s Monday Night PlayGround is

Six original short plays by L.A.’s best new dramatists, inspired by the topic “I Have A Dream…”

January 14, 2013
Monday @ 8pm

Zephyr Theatre
7456 Melrose Ave.
Los Angeles, California 90046

(323) 992-6766  or

TICKETS: $20, priority seating; $15, general admission; $10, student admission with ID. Pay-What-You-Can at the door subject to availability. 4-admission flex subscriptions (includes priority seating) start at just $60.