It will likely come as no surprise that we love the development process here at CFT. We kind of go ‘ga-ga’ over it. And in the last four years we’ve been working to create a program that is flexible enough to meaningfully support a playwright’s essential needs at varying stages of their process. We call that program The Matchbox. Most of the stuff happening in The Matchbox is “behind-the-scenes,” but once a year we like to invite you into the process as well. After all, theater isn’t really theater without an audience. It’s an exciting time of year when our playwrights get to test drive their material and YOU get the chance to be a part of its creation. Our upcoming 2013 Matchbox Readings Series is right around the corner. We’ve got four plays by four incredible playwrights that want to hear your thoughts! Come on out and be a part of this staged reading and discussion series. It’s free! Reserve your seats now.
2013 Matchbox Reading Series presenting staged readings of works still in development:
From award-winning playwright Christopher Chen, THE INVISIBLE PLAY uses the novels of Italo Calvino as a jumping-off point to explore themes of intimacy and distance, while subtly disrupting the relationship between the audience and the fiction of the play. Poetic and mutable, this is an exciting piece in its earliest stages from a very up-and-coming writer.
Another installation in nationally-produced writer Lauren Gunderson’s “Revenge Comedies,” THE TAMING mashes up America’s solipsistic election-year rhetoric and the sexy, electrifying badinage of Shakespeare’s TAMING OF THE SHREW to ask not what your country can do for you, but what you can do for your country—with the help of some choice pharmaceuticals and a light-up beauty queen outfit. Hey, y’all, can we talk?
BLUE GOD COUNTDOWN by Geetha Reddy
A Matchbox Reading presented Monday, February 4 at 7pm
Directed by Jessica Heidt
Accomplished local playwright Reddy brings to The Matchbox a lavish, allegorical, experimental play still in development. In this fascinating, hyper-real exploration, four siblings of various ethnicities grapple with love, death, fate and each other in a complex interweaving of American family dynamics, Hindu mythology, and space travel.
This gut-punch of a play by Australian playwright Lachlan Philpott uses starkly beautiful and rhythmic language and a haunting, interleaved structure to tell the story of two high school girls in an impoverished suburb, unflinchingly laying bare their fantasies, aggressions, anxieties, and cruelly shifting alliances. When the two best friends skip school one day, what begins as a dare quickly exposes the fragility of everything they thought they knew.
ABOUT THE PLAYWRIGHTS
Christopher Chen’s plays include INTO THE NUMBERS, THE WINDOW AGE, AULIS: AN ACT OF NIHILISM IN ONE LONG ACT, and THE HUNDRED FLOWERS PROJECT, which recently concluded a successful run with Crowded Fire/Playwrights Foundation. His work has also been produced and developed at American Conservatory Theater, Asian American Theater Company, Bay Area Playwrights Festival, Bay One Acts, Beijing Fringe Festival, Central Works, Cutting Ball Theater, Edinburgh Fringe Festival, Fluid Motion, hotINK Festival, Just Theatre, Lark Play Development Center, Magic Theatre, Silk Road Theatre Project, and Theatre Mu. Honors include the 2012 Rella Lossy Playwriting Award (for THE HUNDRED FLOWERS PROJECT), 2nd Place in the Belarus Free Theater International Competition of Modern Dramaturgy, a Ford Foundation Emerging Writer of Color Grant, and finalist status for the Jerome Fellowship. Chen is a resident playwright at the Playwrights Foundation, a graduate of U.C. Berkeley, and holds an M.F.A. in playwriting from S.F. State.
Lauren Gunderson is an award-winning playwright living in San Francisco. She studied at Emory University and NYU’s Tisch School of Performing Arts, where she was a Reynolds Fellow in Social Entrepreneurship. Her work has been produced and developed at companies across the U.S., including South Coast Rep (EMILIE, SILENT SKY), The Kennedy Center (THE AMAZING ADVENTURES OF DR. WONDERFUL AND HER DOG!), Playwrights Foundation, The Lark, and The O’Neill (FIRE WORK). EMILIE: LA MARQUISE DU CHATELET DEFENDS HER LIFE TONIGHT is published with Sam French. The first play in her Shakespeare Series, EXIT, PURSUED BY A BEAR is published with Playscripts. Her second in the Shakes Series, TOIL AND TROUBLE, premiered last year at Impact. BY AND BY will premiere at Shotgun Players this May. She is currently under commission with SF Playhouse, Crowded Fire, and South Coast Rep and is working on a musical with Harry Connick Jr. She has spoken nationally and internationally on the intersection of science and theater. She is a Playwright in Residence at The Playwrights Foundation, and a proud Dramatists Guild member. More on Lauren here: www.LaurenGunderson.com
Geetha Reddy‘s plays include SAFE HOUSE (SFPlayhouse Sandbox 2010), BLASTOSPHERE (with Aaron Loeb, CentralWorks 2009), GIRL IN A BOX, ME GIVEN YOU, and BOOK CLUB! THE MUSICAL. She received the June Anne Baker Prize, five “Emerging Playwright” awards and multiple alumni commissions from PlayGround. Her plays have been included in the Bay Area Playwrights Festival, the Playwrights’ Revolution Festival, the Playwrights Foundation’s ‘Rough Reading’ series, and the Just Theatre PlayLab. Her short plays have been featured in the Best of PlayGround Festival, the Santa Rosa Quickies Festival and the SF Fringe Festival where she won Best of Fringe. Her play OBIT is currently being produced as a short film. She is a Playwrights Foundation Resident Playwright and member of the Dramatists Guild.
Lachlan Philpott is a Sydney-based writer, dramaturg, teacher, and director. As a recipient of an Australia Council Literature Residency, he spent much of 2012 working with theater companies in California, hosted by The Playwrights Foundation in San Francisco. Lachlan writes for theater, television, and film. His first play BISON has had sell-out seasons in Adelaide, Belfast, London, Melbourne and Sydney. His other plays include BUSTOWN [shortlisted for 2009 Australian Writers Guild Best Play Award], CATAPULT, COLDER [Winner R.E Ross Trust Award 2007], DUE MONDAY, SILENT DISCO [Winner Griffin Award for Outstanding New Australian play 2009, Winner GAP Competition Aurora Theatre Co. USA, 2010, winner best play Australian Writers Guild Awards 2012, shortlisted Best New Australian work The Helpmann Awards, The NSW Premier’s Literary Awards, and best New Australian work Sydney Theatre Critics’ Circle Awards] TRUCK STOP and THE TROUBLE WITH HARRY. He was writer in Residence at Red Stitch Theatre, Melbourne in 2006, and Griffin Theatre Company Sydney in 2010, and he was selected as the only Australian writer for ‘The Traverse Fifty’ in Edinburgh during 2013. Lachlan has had six plays published to date. He is currently employed as a dramaturg and assessor of scripts by PlayWriting Australia, Australian Theatre for Young People and Hothouse Theatre, Albury.