Thursday, April 4, 2013

PlayGround-LA Announces Best of PlayGround!

PlayGround-LA, Los Angeles’s incubator for a new generation of playwrights, caps off its inaugural season on Monday evening, May 13 at the Zephyr Theatre with the Best of PlayGround, a one-night gala celebration of the best playwrights and short plays selected from more than 100 submissions and 36 works developed as part of the season’s Monday Night PlayGround staged reading series. The Gala will feature an all-star performance of the six Best of PlayGround winners and a post-show reception with the performers and playwrights. Tickets start at $50 and are available through the Box Office at 323-992-6766 or online at PlayGround-LA.org/bestof.shtml.

Best of PlayGround

The six plays to be presented in this year’s Best of PlayGround are:
Romeo and Jules by Ron Burch
Pinocchia by Kathleen Cecchin
The Kid in the Trunk by John Corcoran, Jr.
The Prince and the Closet Castle by Andrew Crabtree
Waiting for Kafka by Kevin Crust
Flight Time by Carolina Rojas Moretti

Four additional finalists for this year’s Best of PlayGround include: Joe Luis Cedillo (“Red Lines”), Forrest Hartl (“Seed Change”), Karen Howes (“Cross Winds Over the Saanich Inlet”), and Marc Ketchem (“Humpty Dumpty Vs. Jack Sprat”).

About the Plays

Romeo and Jules by Ron Burch
When Romeo stands below the wrong balcony, mistaken identity turns to recognition and then to bold admissions in this comedic twist on the Shakespeare tragedy.

Pinocchia by Kathleen Cecchin
In this contemporary retelling of the classic tale, a puppet-turned-teenage-girl struggles to find her place in the world and her parents struggle to hold onto their little girl.

The Kid in the Trunk by John Corcoran, Jr.
Bereaved serial killer at the wheel, stoner mistress at his side, dead kid in the trunk…what could possibly go wrong?

The Prince and the Closet Castle by Andrew Crabtree
A desperate attempt to connect becomes a wake-up call in close-quarters for two social misfits hiding away from an office party.

Waiting for Kafka by Kevin Crust
An elderly woman shows up at a chaotic emergency room concerned about alarming changes in her husband’s condition.

Flight Time by Carolina Rojas Moretti
A young woman struggles to decipher a recurring airplane nightmare and her increasingly dysfunctional family before the inevitable crash.

About the Playwrights

Ron Burch lives in Los Angeles, where he works as a screenwriter.  Over the past year, his plays have been produced in the UK, Seoul (Korea), New York City, Brooklyn, Los Angeles, and across the country.  Ron's also a published fiction writer:  he's been nominated for "The Pushcart Prize," and his first novel, BLISS, INC., was published in 2010; his flash-fiction collection, MENAGERIE, will be published by Aqueous Books in 2014. Visit www.ronburch.net or http://lifesbitchslap.blogspot.com/.

Kathleen Cecchin is an actor, director and writer, whose play Bitch can be found in the collection, Can I Sit with You? The Stormy Social Seas of the Schoolyard. Her work can also be found in the upcoming 2013 WriteGirl Anthology. She is currently in preproduction for her short film, Pam, to be shot this Summer.

John Corcoran, Jr., is a seven-time Emmy-winning critic, writer and reporter, including eight years as “Entertainment Czar” at LA’s KCAL-TV. There he also won multiple Press Club and Golden Mike honors. His eclectic career includes published books, countless articles, talk show host, television columnist, blogging and standup comedy. Currently a playwright and writer, he is on the Board of Directors at FirstStage-Hollywood, where he is developing “The Kid” into a full-length play.

Andrew Crabtree is a writer/producer and Ovation-nominated actor who has worked for networks like Cartoon Network, HGTV and the Oprah Winfrey Network and brands like Microsoft, AT&T, and Sony. His most recent short film -- Carrie: The Artist -- won the Audience Choice Award at the 2012 No Budget Film Festival in Downtown LA. He’s the creator and curator of humorist essay site StoriesIWroteMyself.com and a contributing columnist to LosAngelesFAIL.com. Twitter: @andrew_crabtree

Kevin Crust is a former journalist and staff writer at the Los Angeles Times. He studied theatre at Cal State L.A. and is a founding member of the playwrights’ collective, Palabras. Plays include Pause, The Superhero at Midnight, Waiting for Kafka (PlayGround-LA People’s Choice Award, November 2012), Holiday Spirits in the Material World, David Lynch Flash Mob (A Brief Inquiry Into the Dream Sequence), and Patricius Unleashed (a March PlayGround-LA finalist).

Carolina Rojas Moretti spent three years as a PlayGround writer in San Francisco before moving down to Los Angeles two years ago.  She is grateful and excited for the opportunity to help PlayGround-LA get established in sunny Southern California.  She lives in Venice with her husband, two kidlets, and one aging pooch.

About PlayGround-LA

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 Bay Area’s leading emerging writers and, at the same time, has engendered the creation of a true community of theatre artists, bringing together hundreds of local 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 http://PlayGround-LA.org or follow PlayGround on Facebook (http://facebook.com/PlayGround.LosAngeles) and Twitter (http://twitter.com/PlayGround_LA).

WHAT:             Best of PlayGround Gala
                        A performance of the best six works from the 2012-13 Monday Night PlayGround season

WHEN:             May 13, 2013
                        Monday @ 7:30pm

WHERE:           Zephyr Theatre
                        7456 Melrose Ave.
                        Los Angeles, California 90046

HOW:               (323) 992-6766  or
                        http://PlayGround-LA.org/bestof.shtml

TICKETS:         $50 (General), $100 (Premium, includes priority seating and complimentary glass of wine), and $150 (Host).

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