Abingdon Theatre Company-which has produced 77 new American plays in its 20-year history celebrates-its 2012-2013 Season with the inaugural ABINGDON BAY RIDGE ONE-ACT FESTIVAL, an evening of three world-premiere short plays, commissioned by Abingdon Theatre Company, by Kevin Armento, Bo List, and Jen Silverman, on Saturday, August 25 at 7:00pm at Christ Church Bay Ridge (7301 Ridge Boulevard) in Brooklyn.
The staged readings are to be directed by Abingdon's Artistic Director, Jan Buttram; Associate Artistic Director, Kim T. Sharp; and Director of Playwriting Outreach, Bara Swain. A panel of theatre professionals will choose the festival's outstanding script, naming one playwright as the winner of The Father Hamblin Festival Award and a cash prize.
Initial submissions were invited from playwrights who have had a history with Abingdon and who have shown talent and dedication to writing full-length and short plays. Treatments were submitted on a social theme: "All mankind struggles to balance personal needs with their responsibility to society." Abingdon staff members selected playwrights Kevin Armento, Bo List, and Jen Silverman to receive a commission and have their work premiere in the first-ever ABINGDON BAY RIDGE ONE-ACT FESTIVAL.
In Kevin Armento's PICK OF THE LITTER, Gero is stranded on lockdown at the San Diego Zoo's Panda Pavilion with his fiancé Reagan and his mother Ivonne, because three red river hog piglets have escaped their pen. Forced to wait on this hot August day, Gero plays peacemaker between the two women of his life. Will he himself escape?
In CANARY YELLOW by Bo List, Eugenia Larkin left her small, West Virginia town as soon as she could to escape the fate of uneducated women in the rural south and the legacy of a dangerous and dying coal industry. Twenty years later, a successful news journalist, Eugenia returns for the funeral of her two brothers from a mine collapse, but her family questions her motive for returning.
In Jen Silverman's MARVIN ON THE LOOSE, Hurricane Marvin is sweeping toward New York and 17-year-old Ragweed is ready to get out. Her grandmother, Sweet Old Thing, however, won't leave Queens. As floodwaters rise and neighbors flee, Sweet Old Thing begins planning a takeover of the neighborhood, co-opting everything from abandoned furniture, to pets, and even a baby who she claims to have "found."
Kevin Armento's plays have been staged and developed at Last Frontier Theater Conference, Naked Angels, Abingdon, Rogue Machine Theater, Fresh Ground Pepper Play Group, and the Lyceum Theatre in San Diego. His play BETS & BLUE NOTES was named Best New Play of the Year by the San Diego Union-Tribune and San Diego Gay & Lesbian Times. His 10-minute play BREEDERS has been produced in New York, California, Ohio, Alaska, and Sydney, and his play COMPANION PIECE will receive a reading by the North American Actors Association in London this summer. His screenplays have received honors at the Los Angeles International Film Festival, Action on Film Festival, Slamdance, and NYC Horror Film Festival, and his screenplay "Home Away From Home" was produced in 2011 by Moonmosa Pictures.
Bo List is a proud graduate of the University of Memphis Department of Theatre and Dance, where he received an MFA in Directing in 2003. Hisplays include PINK ANGELS, DRACULA...A VARIATION (premiere, Edinburgh Festival Fringe), and FRANKENSTEIN-which premiered with Kentucky Conservatory Theatre's Summerfest in 2011 and will be seen at City Lit Theater in Chicago in fall, 2012. His plays for high schools-CITY OF LIGHTS: THE AMERICAN CENTURY ON BROADWAY and OUR TIME both premiered at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe, and he will-in spring 2013-debut his
adaptation of Karel Capek's R.U.R. for a number of American high schools. One-acts include CAPTAIN HERO AND THE DOOM SEQUENCE and BUBBLY. List belongs to both the Society of Directors and Choreographers and the Dramatists Guild of America.
Jen Silverman studied at Brown University and the Iowa Playwrights Workshop. CRANE STORY premiered off-Broadway in 2011 with The Playwrights Realm, and THE EDUCATIN OF MACOLCO won the 2009 Samuel French Off-Off Broadway Play Festival and was published by Samuel French. Her new play AKARUI premiered at Cleveland Public Theatre in May 2012. She is an Affiliated Artist with New Georges, a member of Youngblood at EST, and has developed work with The Lark, NY Stage & Film, the Bay Area Playwrights Festival, hotINK (NYC), The Brick (Brooklyn), Leviathan Lab (NYC), and the Seven Devils Playwrights Conference. She received a 2011 commission from InterAct Theatre/the NNPN for THE DANGEROUS HOUSE OF PRETTY MBANE, written during a 2012 residency at the MacDowell Colony. She also received a 2012 commission from the Red Fern Theatre for the one-act LEX BEFORE MARRIAGE, produced in winter 2012. Jen has held residencies at Hedgebrook, New Harmony, and the Millay Colony (upcoming), and was a two-time finalist for the O'Neill. In 2011, she was a US Delegate for a China/America Writers Exchange in Beijing and Chicago. Her play Still won the 2012 Jane Chambers Award.
Since 1993, Abingdon Theatre Company has developed and produced new plays by American Playwrights exclusively. Their actors, directors, designers, producers and dramaturgs have collaborated with more than 200 playwrights to develop original plays. Under the guidance of Artistic Director Jan Buttram and Managing Director Samuel J. Bellinger, the company provides a safe home in which playwrights collaborate with other theatre artists and receive audience feedback through readings and workout labs, culminating in full productions. Its complete upcoming 20th Season is to be announced.
Christ Church Bay Ridge is a welcoming, supportive, and inclusive Episcopal congregation that provides a place where all can be nurtured and grow spiritually in Christ. Our mission to the community is rooted in service, expressed in hospitality, and manifested in diversity. The parish has also worked to make connection with the changing demographics of Bay Ridge.
Along with the inaugural ABINGDON BAY RIDGE ONE-ACT FESTIVAL, Christ Church Bay Ridge has a mutual ministry with Saint George Syrian Church, and ecumenical worship with Our Savior Lutheran Church, it also sponsors Girl Scouts, Bay Ridge Garden Club, its own Hispanic Ministry/Community Outreach Program, a Montessori Based Preschool, Language & Arts Center, the Christ Church Playgroup, and the Christ Church After School & Summer Fun Program. Christ Church supports ministries of Episcopal Charities serving families, youth and aged worldwide. Visit www.christchurchbayridge.org
ABINGDON BAY RIDGE ONE-ACT FESTIVAL runs Saturday, August 25 at 7:00pm at Christ Church Bay Ridge (7301 Ridge Boulevard. By subway: take R train to 77th Street). Tickets (cash only at the door) are a suggested donation of $10 for individuals; $25 for families of three or more.
For more information, call Abingdon Theatre Company at 212-868-2055 or visit www.abingdontheatre.org