The New Works Festival at College of the Canyons in Valencia has formally announced the participating playwrights for the spring 2012 festival.
Nine playwrights were chosen from their work through a blind reading process. The participants represent a broad span of experience, from beginning writers to published and produced professional playwrights, from festival newcomers to festival alumni.
The year’s playwrights are Ron Burch, Brittany E. Williams, Sarah Oh, Bonnie Sludikoff, David Wallace, Kevin Rae, Karen Howes, Rachel Randall and Mark Charney.
Subjects for the play chosen include a long-lost father, wedding jitters, zombie romance, illicit professions, cops & robbers, crazy burning love, talk show hosts, and hell.
Also this included this spring is a special project between the New Works Festival and Mark Charney, director of the Clemson University Theatre Department. The project is planning a series of readings of Charney’s new play, “The Balloon Handler Makes Good.” The readings will be recorded to create a series of vodcasts (video-podcasts) on play development for use in both schools creative writing and playwriting classes.
“As far as we know, this will be the first ever complete play development process via live video streaming,” said David Stears, New Works Festival director at COC. Charney, an alumnus of the festival (2008), will not be in attendance for the final staging. “Mark will be directing a play in across the country; however, we are working bringing him in via video for the performance.”
The New Works Festival works with the playwrights, honing their play, and presents the work to the public at the end of the semester. Beginning last year, the festival began publishing an anthology of the plays presented. “The New Works Festival Anthology 2008” is now available on Amazon, with the 2011 anthology set for release before the beginning of the spring semester.
“We are the only small festival in the country that publishes,” Stears said. “And many of the plays and playwrights go on to have premieres in L.A. and around the country.”
Auditions for actors will be a part of the spring semester auditions at COC on Feb. 6 and Feb. 7. For more information about auditions, visit www.canyons.edu/departments/theatre/upcoming.htm.
For more information about readings, special events and performances, follow the New Works Festival on Facebook at www.facebook.com/NewWorksFestival.