A belated welcome to Lila Rose Kaplan, who joined Rhombus in the fall! Read more about this playwriting superhero—whose new play The Villains’ Supper Club opens at Merrimac Repertory Theatre in April—here.
Two Rhombus writers take prizes from Mass Cultural Council
Congrats to two of our members for winning 2016 Fellowships in Dramatic Writing from the Massachusetts Cultural Council. Nina was one of four winners, who each will be awarded $12,000. Patrick was one of five finalists, who each will receive $1,000.
News from 2016
Walt McGough’s play Non-Player Character was workshopped this summer at the Playwrights Foundation’s Bay Area Playwrights Festival. Based loosely on the GamerGate controversy, the play delves into a timely and boldly theatrical exploration of the misogyny in the games we play and who’s winning.
Ginger’s play BURNING was produced by New York’s Resonance Ensemble in February 2016, featuring Catherine Curtin. The New York Times said, “Ms. Lazarus’s clever adaptation [of Cyrano de Bergerac] is smoothly suited to our times.”
Rhombus welcomes Nina Louise Morrison
Rhombus is pleased to announce the addition of our newest member, Nina Louise Morrison. After years of limiting our membership strictly to six playwrights, we’ve decided to expand to seven playwrights. Nina’s been making a big impact on the Boston theatre scene, working with Project:Project, she’s a recent Huntington Playwriting Fellow, and she won the 2016 Boston Project competition with SpeakEasy Stage, and she teaches playwriting at Grub Street (among other projects). We’re delighted to welcome her to the group!
Milk Like Sugar Opens January 29th
Kirsten’s Milk Like Sugar is being produced by the Huntington January 29th – February 27th. The play has received accolades for stunning productions around the country, and now Boston finally gets to see it! Milk Like Sugar won the 2012 Obie Award for Playwriting, the 2011 Edgerton Foundation New American Play Award and the 2011 San Diego Critics Circle Craig Noel Award for Outstanding New Play.
The Housekeeper & Burning
Ginger has not one but two plays in production early this spring! The Housekeeper is being produced by Fresh Ink and runs at Boston Playwrights Theatre until Jan. 30. Resonance Ensemble’s production of Burning opens in rep with Cyrano de Bergerac on February 3 in New York starring Catherine Curtin.
Lab Rats reading in Lexington, Saturday, February 21
Patrick is having a reading of his latest full-length play, Lab Rats, at the Munroe Center for the Arts in Lexington, 7:30pm, on February 21. Rebecca Bradshaw (who directed his play, Fire on Earth) is directing a stellar cast of Omar Robinson and Brenna Fitzgerald.
In Lab Rats, Mika and Jake live on the margins of society, earning a slim living as test subjects in medical and psychological experiments. With Mika’s fiery outbursts and Jake’s extreme shyness, they seem like an unlikely pair, but as they get to know each other in medical waiting rooms they develop a friendship and romance that starts to ease their painful isolation. Lab Rats brings a fun theatricality to the lives of two people desperate to find a hand to hold on to through the twisting maze of life.
Patrick worked with Rebecca and Omar and Brenna on Lab Rats for a reading in November from Argos Productions, and is super grateful to continue with them for this new reading.
Walt is on a roll!
Rhombus writer Walt McGough’s play, Chalk, just closed a successful run at Boston Playwrights’ Theatre, produced by Fresh Ink Theatre, directed by Sarah Gadzdowicz. This is a play that we loved seeing in our regular Rhombus meetings, and it was a thrill to see it so successfully staged, and especially with Christine Power in the role of Maggie, after she read it in so many sessions. Next, Chalk will appear in Chicago, in a production from the Sideshow Theatre Company, May 24 – June 28.
As if that wasn’t enough, Walt’s play, Pattern of Life, was nominated for an IRNE Award for Best New Play. This play was produced by New Rep last year and directed by Bridget O’Leary. The winner will be announced on April 13.
Distant Neighbors opens Friday, December 5th
Patrick’s newest play, Distant Neighbors, will be produced by Fresh Ink and will run December 5-13 at Boston Playwrights’ Theatre. In Distant Neighbors, a group of suburban neighbors are strangers to each other until an alien space ship crashes into their back yards. After its arrival, they get to know each other a lot better, and faster, than they ever expected (or wanted). Distant Neighbors is a space-age love story about loneliness and longing, and the barriers we set up between us. It looks at the possibility for wonder, not just at the skies and the universe, but also at the person living right next door.
This fun script is one that went through many rounds of weekly readings at Rhombus and then spent most of a year as part of New Rep’s New Voices program, culminating in a reading in May 2013. Now Fresh Ink is mounting this play at Boston Playwrights’ Theatre (after becoming a Factory Theatre orphan, when that venue closed unexpectedly this fall). Fresh Ink has a history of producing plays by Rhombus members, having already produced Ginger’s The Embryos, Walt’s Priscilla Dreams the Answer, and Patrick’s Fire on Earth. And Fresh Ink’s next show is Chalk, another play by Walt that has gone through our reading process.
You can buy tickets to Distant Neighbors here. Thursday, December 11th, is playwrights’ night and will feature a post-show discussion with Patrick and dramaturg Tyler Monroe.
Rhombus actors over the years. (Thanks!)
We’ve worked with 111 different actors over the past 10 years. At our bi-weekly readings, we have four actors (two men, two women) there to read whatever new material our writers bring in. Sometimes we call in actors to fill in when the regulars can’t make it. Some actors only worked with us through our public readings. Dozens have them have read with us week after week, sometimes year after year. We’re grateful to all of them.
Our very first meeting was held on Tuesday, January 15, 2003. Our actors that night were: Barlow Adamson, Irene Daly, Mary Kearney, and Nat McIntyre. We had no idea that Rhombus would still be going strong more than 10 years later.
Here are the names of all the actors who have worked with us over the years, both in our meetings and our public events. Thank you for all your help in developing the thousands of pages of scripts that we’ve brought in.
Kortney Adams, Barlow Adamson, , Maureen Adduci, Jordan Ahnquist, Richard Arum, Rena Baskin, Marianna Bassham, Penny Benson, Brian Bernhard, Stephanie Biernbaum, Michael Buckley, Destinie Boyd, Ozzie Carnan, Nancy R. Carroll, Sasha Castroverde, Vic Clay, Larry Coen, Chris Cook, Stephen Cooper, Michael Corbett, Irene Daly, Katie Drexel, Zachary Eisenstat, Kelley Estes, Stacy Fischer, Ruby Rose Fox, Paul Giragos, Kippy Goldfarb, Annabel Graetz, Terrence P. Haddad, Christine Hamel, Marc Harpin, Meagan Hawkes, Joshua Heggie, Korinne Hertz, Peg Holzemer, Ed Hoopman, Tim Hoover, Alisha Jansky, John Joyce, Mary Kearney, Maureen Keiller, Gus Kelley, Kate Fitz Kelly, Brian Kostantin, Gabriel Kuttner, Richard LaFrance, Lau Lapides, Kevin LaVelle, Neal Leaheey, Becca Lewis, Crystal Lisbon, Justin Lockwood, Margot Lynch, Lindsay MacWhorter, Elise Manning, Greg Maraio, Victoria Marsh, Doug Marsden, Karen Woodward Massey, Craig Mathers, Melanie May, Ray McDavitt, Grant McDermott, Helen McElwain, Will McGHarrahan, Ben McGinley, Nat McIntyre, Johnnie McQuarley, Paul Melendy, Jonathan Mirin, Linda Monchik, Bill Mootos, Joanne Moskow, Michelle Mount, Robert D. Murphy, Maddy Myers, Luis Negron, Sarah Newhouse, Holly Newman, John Olson, Eve Passeltiner, Bob Pemberton, Aaron Pitre, Dale Place, Christine Power, Nicole Prefontaine, Tom Pruneau, Brenny Rabine, Sonya Raye, Ron Rittinger, Omar Robinson, Paul Robinson, Colleen Rua, Zabeth Russell, Mason Sands, Robert Saoud, Jon Sarrouf, George Saulnier, Claire Shinkman, Kris Sidberry, Dawn Simmons, Joe Siriani, Jim Spencer, Joye Thaler, Lisa Tucker, Bruce Ward, Chris Webb, Jessica Webb, Craig Weinreich, Suzie Wong.
We’re glad that a bunch of these actors will be present at It Came From Rhombus on Monday night at BPT, to help us celebrate ten years of Rhombus, and for us to say thanks for all their help.