The GPTC Women Playwright’s Fund
The GPTC Women Playwright’s Fund is a program created by leaders in the women’s community of Omaha to sponsor a top national woman playwright, and a promising emerging woman playwright, each year at the Great Plains Theatre Conference.
The sponsorship pays for the top playwright’s residency, an evening production of one of her major works, and gives a scholarship to the emerging playwright to help offset their conference expenses. The two playwrights will be able to work together during the conference, and there will be several special gatherings/discussions with local women artists and leaders, and the national women artists who are attending the conference. This effort works together as part of 50/50 by 2020, a national movement to correct the amazing imbalance between male and female playwrights and theatre practitioners who are being produced in this country.
Marsha Norman’s article through Theatre Communication Group provides a wonderful perspective on this subject.
The 2011 Top National Woman Playwright is Caridad Svich.
Caridad is a US Latina playwright, translator, lyricist and editor whose works have been presented across the US and abroad at diverse venues including Repertorio Espanol, The Women's Project, INTAR, 59East59, Cincinnati Playhouse, McCarren Park Pool, 7 Stages, Salvage Vanguard Theatre, ARTheater-Cologne, and Edinburgh Fringe Festival/UK. The summer 2009 issue of American Theatre magazine featured a significant profile about her work, and she is the recipient of the 2009 Lee Reynolds Award from the League of Professional Theatre Women. Among her key plays: 12 Ophelias, Any Place But Here, Alchemy of Desire/Dead-Man's Blues, Fugitive Pieces, Iphigenia...a rave fable, Instructions for Breathing, The Booth Variations, and The House of the Spirits (based on the novel by Isabel Allende).. She has translated nearly all of Federico Garcia Lorca's plays as well as works by Lope de Vega, Calderon de la Barca, Julio Cortazar and new plays from Spain, Cuba and Mexico and has freely adapted works by Wedekind, Sophocles, Euripides and Shakespeare. She's a former Harvard/Radcliffe Institute Bunting Fellow and has received grants from the NEA, TCG, Pew Charitable Trusts and California Arts Council. She has edited several books on theatre and performance including Trans-Global Readings: Crossing Theatrical Boundaries (Manchester University Press) and Divine Fire (BackStage Books). Her work is published by TCG, Smith & Kraus, Playscripts and more. She is alumna playwright of New Dramatists, founder of theatre alliance & press NoPassport, associate editor of Routledge's Contemporary Theatre Review and contributing editor of TheatreForum. She is member of PEN American Center, The Dramatists Guild and is featured in the Oxford Encyclopedia of Latino History. She holds an MFA from UCSD.
The 2011 Emerging Playwright is Ellen Struve.
Ellen is a founding member of the Omaha Playwrights Group. She received a B.A. from the University of Iowa, where she participated in the Undergraduate Nonfiction Workshop and studied playwriting with Keith Huff and Rick Cleveland. Her play, Mrs. Jennings’ Sitter, was a MainStage selection for the 2008 GPTC and was produced by Shelterbelt Theatre in Omaha, NE and Kokopelli Theatre in New York, NY. Her 10-minute play, Playing the Joke, was produced in Columbia, MO as part of Independent Actors’ Theatre’s Short Women’s Play Festival 2011. This April, her play Nobody Gets Paid had its premiere at Shelterbelt Theatre. Ellen’s play, Recommended Reading for Girls will be read at the 2011 Great Plains Theatre Conference.
As a result of Ellen’s close proximity to the conference and the idea that other playwrights may need the money to travel, Ellen has graciously donated her scholarship funds to Monica Raymond, another talented and award-winning playwright from Cambridge, MA.
Monica’s play, The Owl Girl, won the the Clauder Gold Medal, the Peacewriting Prize, the Castillo Award for Political Theater, and was featured at Portland Stage’s Little Festival of the Unexpected. She has been a Jerome Fellow at the Playwrights Center in Minneapolis and a MacDowell Colony fellow. Novices appeared in Best Short Plays of 2009 (Smith and Kraus) and Creche in 35 in 10 (Dramatic Publishing). Raymond has performed with the street theater troupe Class Acts, and toured in "An Olive on the Seder Plate," (a revue by and for American Jews about Israel/Palestine). She's published poetry in the Colorado Review, the Iowa Review, the Village Voice, and in the last thirteen issues of qarrtsiluni.com. She has served on the advisory board of Women Playwrights International and has taught writing at Harvard, the Boston Museum School, the University of Massachusetts and the City University of New York. Monica’s play, A to Z will be read at the 2011 Great Plains Theatre Conference.
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