October 16 Monday Night PlayGround Selections!

“From small beginnings come great things.” (American Proverb)
PlayGround kicks off its 24th season on Monday, October 16, 8 PM at Berkeley Repertory Theatre’s Peet’s Stage with an all-new season of the celebrated Monday Night PlayGround staged reading series. The topic for the first round is “IN THE BEGINNING…”. Members of the recently announced 2017-18 PlayGround Writers Company had just four-and-a-half days to generate their original ten-minute plays inspired by the topic. The top six scripts (see below) will each receive an hour-and-a-half rehearsal and a professional script-in-hand staged reading at Berkeley Rep on October 16. Tickets are $15-$30 and 6-admission series subscriptions are just $75. For tickets or more information, visit http://playground-sf.org/monday.

The selected plays/playwrights for the October 16 Monday Night PlayGround Season Opener are: CAT TOWN by Nara Dahlbacka; SPISKAMMERS by Rob Dario; ANNA CONSIDERS A COCKTAIL by Ruben Grijalva; EVERY BEGINNING by Genevieve Jessee; FRESH SQUEEZED PLEASE by Melissa Keith; and WHERE TO BEGIN? by Maury Zeff.

The playwrights of the 2017-18 PlayGround Writers Company are: Lynn Aylward, Kathy Boussina, Madeleine Butler, Karen Catalona, Nara Dahlbacka, Rob Dario, Victoria Chong Der+, Ai Ebashi, Nancy Fishman, Elizabeth Flanagan, Jerome Joseph Gentes+, Akaina Ghosh, Lauren Gorski, Ruben Grijalva+, Garret Jon Groenveld+, Tanya Grove, Karen Hartline, Devony Hof, Sam Hurwitt, Genevieve Jessee+, Melissa Keith+, Kate Keleher, Katie May+, Alanna McFall, Jeanie Ngo, Cheryl Ossola, Ishai Padawer, Lana Palmer, Erin Marie Panttaja+, Ken Prestininzi+, Madeline Puccioni, Marsha Roberts, Annette Roman, Cleavon Smith+, Nic Sommerfeld, Aimee Suzara, Jon Tracy, Mary Weikert, Steven Westdahl, Zoe Young, Maury Zeff+, Lesli Zephyr, and Ignacio Zulueta+ (+ Resident Playwright).

Recent topics have included: “We Hold These Truths to be Self-Evident,” “Artificial Intelligence,” and “Awakening to the Dream of the Earth” as part of a now-four-year collaboration with Planet Earth Arts and Stanford University. The top six plays from each month are rehearsed for just one-and-a-half hours each and presented as script-in-hand staged readings at Monday Night PlayGround, now celebrating its twenty-fourth year. PlayGround audiences get to enjoy a unique behind-the-scenes perspective, with a free Pre-Performance Discussion at 7:10pm.  Audience members can also experience the thrill of being a producer through the monthly People’s Choice Awards, helping to determine which plays and playwrights go on for consideration in PlayGround’s annual showcase, the Best of PlayGround Festival.

The October 16 season opener is being dedicated to the memory of longtime PlayGround friend, supporter and former board member Meg Zweiback who passed away last month after a year-long battle against cancer. In addition, PlayGround will raise funds in support of PlayGround artists displaced by the North Bay fires.

PlayGround, the Bay Area’s leading playwright incubator, provides unique development opportunities for the Bay Area’s best new playwrights, including the monthly Monday Night PlayGround staged reading series, annual PlayGround Festival of New Works, full-length play commissions and support for the production of new plays by local playwrights through the New Play Production Fund. To date, PlayGround has supported over 200 local playwrights in the development and staging of more than 850 original short plays and 75 new full-length plays, with 6 more commissions currently in development. PlayGround also operates Potrero Stage (formerly Thick House), a state-of-the-art 99-seat black box theatre in San Francisco’s Potrero Hill neighborhood, home to some of the Bay Area’s leading new play developers and producers, including PlayGround, Crowded Fire, Golden Thread, and Playwrights Foundation. For more information, visit http://playground-sf.org.