Meet the Full-Length LAB Members!
2019 Women’s Work Full-Length LAB Members
Members of this Full-Length LAB presented their longer completed works to the public at various stages in a Mini Fest in May 2019. Their works were presented by twenty-eight actors, in excerpt or draft form.
JOAN CASTAGNONE earned her MA in English and Creative Writing from the University of North Dakota. She received an ATA award for an adaptation of The Three Sisters for the Drama Department’s main-stage and had a number of her plays produced throughout the state. A former playwright member of the Women’s Project, she was invited to New York for the development and reading of her full-length, Blackbirds, as part of their Midwestern Voices Project. She has published poetry and short fiction in over twenty quarterlies and literary magazines and was the founder and editor of Bloodroot, a literary magazine dedicated to the publication of women writers and artists. Joan was one of the first abridgers at Random House Audio Books. During a long hiatus from the creative writing life, she worked in corporate communications and, later, as an acquiring/ developmental editor at Church Publishing Inc. She is a member of Charles Maryan’s Playwrights/Directors Workshop. Her new play Bliss Point is currently in development in the WW LAB.
ANN CHAMBERLIN is an early member of the WW Project, with JIHAD, The Play having been developed and produced in 1996 at NPTC, winning the OOBR Award for Outstanding Production that year. The play was reprised for the inaugural Midtown International Theatre Festival in 2000, and was NPTC's first venture to the Women On Stage for Peace Festival in Bogotá, Colombia in 2015. NPTC is currently moving the play Off Broadway, after having performed it in the Women On Stage for Peace Festival in Bogotá, Colombia last August. Ann is the author of many plays which have been produced across the country from Seattle to New York, and of several screenplays. She is also the author of nineteen books. Her trilogy set in the 16th-century Ottoman Empire was on the bestsellers list in Turkey for nearly a year. Another award-winning trilogy is set in the days of early Islam. Ann's novel "Choosers Of The Slain", about the Valkyrie from Norse mythology, is currently being developed as a Sci-Fi/Fantasy series for television. She currently works part-time at the Middle East Library at the Univ of Utah as a research consultant. She has two scripts in development in the LAB: The Mind In The Cave and Kitty.
Charlotte Ortiz Colavin
CHARLOTTE ORTIZ COLAVIN’s recent credits include: Full lengths Beautiful Fig and annie & betty: 2 Birds have had staged readings at Performance Space, Santa Cruz, and in New York at the Barrow Group Theatre. Beautiful Fig received honorable mention at Ashland New Play Festival, OR and at Pandora Productions, L.A. One acts, Sweet Stuff (developed and produced in NPTC WW Short Play LAB 2014 and reprised in the WW Retrospective in 2016); Frankie and Edna and JINX (workshopped at The Barrow Group Theatre); georgie (Festival Ten VIII, at The College at Brockport, Rochester); Pause (MSNBC) and Cece (The Performance Works, NY). Charlotte has also been a collaborative playwright for many years in California and in New York, most extensively with Joseph Chaikin on his Disability Project at the Public Theatre with John Belluso, Bill Hart and Charles Mee. She was a co-founder of Lilitheatre in San Francisco, co-writing 2 premiere scripts at its origin, and she conducts playwriting residencies for teachers and students in NYC and NJ High Schools, including with incarcerated youth. Her most recent script, Splendid Grace has been completed in the Full-length LAB and will receive an OFF THE PAGE production in the 2019-20 season.
JENNIE CONTUZZI holds a MFA in Playwriting from the New School for Drama and is the dramaturg/literary manager for Speranza Theatre Company, a Jersey City based women's theatre company. Her play, Body Language received its World Premiere with The Active Theater in June 2012 and her short script MONSTER ws developed in the WW Short Play LAB. She was a member of the now-defunct MCC Theater Playwrights Coalition and continues to work in their literary department as a script reader. Other plays include My Father's Son; Love, Me (Margaret); and Millicent The Magnificent, a play for young adults. Jennie is currently developing TRIBE, a new full-length script in the style of a YA novel.
ALISON LOWENSTEIN is a Brooklyn based writer. Her plays have been performed at the Abingdon Theatre’s Benefit Challenge, LIC One Act Festival, San Diego Center for Jewish Culture Short Play Festival, Ocean County College’s Comic Shorts, Hudson Warehouse Theater’s Monologue Festival, Gi60, Gi60 #NextGen, Teatro Moz, The Wild Project, NYWinterfest, and The Apron Strings Project. She is a member of the Dramatist Guild. In addition, she has an MA in Creative Writing from CCNY, and has authored NYC guidebooks, children’s books, and has written for a variety of publications and websites including The Washington Post, National Geographic Traveler, NY Daily News, Newsday, McSweeney’s Internet Tendency, Gothamist, TravelandLesiure.com, The Hairpin and many others. She wrote Waiting Room for the 2018 Short Play LAB festival, RESISTANCE IS FUTILE, and is now working on a new full-length, BABY FEVER in this year's Full-length LAB. You can find her at www.brooklynbaby.com.
Lynn Marie Macy
LYNN MARIE MACY – Recent: Sister Resisters, (Luna Stage Short Play & Equity Library Theater Festivals), Three Seasons NJ 1 Minute Play Festival, Lady Susan, A Jane Austen Bodice Ripper (Reading, Theater 2020), Doubt & Deliberation (Reading, Theater for the New City), script commissioned by JASNA. Productions: Northanger Abbey, A Romantic Gothic Comedy (Distilled Spirits, Blue Room Theatre & Theater Ten Ten, published by New York Theatre Experience in Playing with Canons, Explosive New Works From Great Literature); Innocent Diversions, A Christmas Entertainment with Jane Austen & Friends (Distilled Spirits, Theater Ten Ten), A Thousand Merry Conceits, A Private Audience with Nell Gwyn (Theater Ten Ten, Bedlam Theatre, Edinburgh Fringe), Crunching Numbers (Distilled Spirits, published in Plays and Playwrights for the New Millennium), and a translation of Schiller’s Intrigue & Love (Jean Cocteau Repertory). Macy is Resident Playwright at Theater 2020 and a Member of the Dramatists’ Guild. Lynn Marie wrote The Color of Justice for the 2018 Short Play LAB festival, RESISTANCE IS FUTILE, and is now working on a new full-length, The Last Transit of Venus.
YANI PÉRÉZ is an Ecuadorian born, Brooklyn raised poet and playwright. Her work can be found in literary journals and websites such as Brooklyn Paramount, By the Overpass, Having A Whiskey Coke With You, Napalm and Novocain, Jellyfish Whispers, Barbie in a Blender Anthology and Storm Cycle 2012: The Best of Kind of a Hurricane Press. Her short play God Don't Exist for Girls From Brooklyn was developed in the NPTC Women's Work Short Play LAB 2012, and revised and presented in 2016 for THE WORK GOES ON, a WW Short Play Retrospective. A Spanish-translation performed in the Alternative Theatre Festival in Bogotá, Colombia in March 2016. When not writing plays, poetry or marketing materials, she teaches English at the university level. Her current research entails the merging of American and Hispanic concepts in second and third generations to accommodate the duality of Latinos in America. Yani is currently developing a new full-length, Rice, which received a reading at La Mama, Experimentals M.F.A in Creative Writing, Long Island University/Brooklyn. www.yaniperez.com
ALISA ZHULINA is a playwright and Assistant Professor in the Department of Drama at NYU. Her plays have been produced at Dixon Place, the Exquisite Corpse Company, the Theatre Project, and Manhattan Repertory Theatre. She holds a Ph.D. in Comparative Literature from Harvard University and is the founder of Cacolet Collective, a performance group dedicated to exploring alternative economies through performance and public art. Alisa is a playwright-in-residence at Exquisite Corpse Company, and is developing two new scripts, Sirens and iOpen in the WW LAB. Her short play, SUBLET, developed and produced in the WW Short Play LAB in 2017, was one of two scripts presented by NPTC in the 2018 Alternative Theatre Festival in Bogotá, Colombia.
CELIA BRAXTON, Ph.D. is the Senior Dramaturg for the Full-length LAB and co-leads the team of resident director-dramaturgs. She was previously a dramaturg with the Short Play LAB, directing in the 2012 and 2013 festivals. Elsewhere, she has helped devise numerous one-person shows, including initial work with Stephanie Berry on her Obie-winning The Shaneequa Chronicles, and a dance/drama adaptation of Macbeth with the Avalon Theatre of e/Motion. Celia has presented at numerous academic conferences. Her 2006 NETJ article, ““Home, Sweet Home”: The Drunkard, Domesticity, and the New Theatrical Audience,” contextualizes the play within the climate of developing domestic ideology. She is working on a book examining the reinvention of the professional and cultural role of the actress in the United States in the final third of the nineteenth century,. She teaches at Queensborough Community College and LaGuardia Community College.
TERESA FISCHER is a director, actress and cabaret performer, and holds an MFA in Theater Directing from the University of South Carolina. Teresa appeared in Night of the Working Dead at NPTC in 2014 and joined the Women’s Work Lab as a director in 2016. She previously directed Stillwater for the Venus/Adonis Play Festival, has directed several cabaret shows featuring Paul and Rochelle Chamlin including: Gems by Jule, Fine and Dandy: The Ladies of Tin Pan Alley and Let’s Get Away From It All. She has worked with Spotlight On Festivals and the Fresh Fruit Festival as a performer, director and behind the scenes. Her recent cabaret shows include: More Than You Know – A Tribute to Rosemary Clooney, Joyful Noise, What’s Next?, and Comedy Roulette. She released her debut CD Let It Go in 2012 and a holiday CD Christmas Is…in 2013. A fun fact: Teresa was featured in Andy Warhol’s Secret Girlfriend at Theatre de Neslé in Paris, France!
MELISSA SKIRBOLL is happy to be continuing her association with NPTC after the very positive experience she had directing Cara Hall’s The Doors or Perception with the Short Play Lab in 2017. She is a strong presence in the New York Indie Theater scene and her work has been recognized with a number of nominations and awards: she’s won the outstanding playwright award (for Blizzard: A Love Story) and outstanding direction (for The Closet by Amy Gray Piper) at Planet Connections Theatre Festivity where she has also been nominated for her acting in Blizzard…, for her direction on Superstars by Glory Kadigan and Straight-Faced Lies by Mark Jason Williams, and for her projections/SFX on A Madness of One Acts. She is a member of New York Madness and has directed for various companies including NyLon Fusion Theater Co, Urban Stages, Abingdon Theatre and Estrogenius Festival. Her plays have been staged by Ego Actus, Abingdon Theatre, Urban Stages here in New York. With her producing company, LifeDream Productions, she produced Hell is Where the Heart Is, (4 Nominations, 2 Wins), Blizzard: A Love Story, (6 Nominations, 2 Wins), and The Closet (5 nominations, 1 Win) at Planet Connections.
Playwright Members on Sabbatical
TERESA LOTZ writes music and words including She Calls Me Firefly (upcoming Soho Playhouse July 2018 Parity Productions and NPTC); Red Emma & the Mad Monk by Alexis Roblan (music, Ars Nova Ant Fest 2017), A Surrealist Sort of View (music, Prospect Theater Company WORLD VIEWS – 2017 Musical Theater Lab) with book-writer/lyricist Sarah Rebell; Mommy’s Little Princess (Reading, NPTC Women's Work May Mini-Festival 2017; one of three scripts developed in the WW LAB to be presented as a staged reading for the 2018 Barbour Playwrighting Award.); ThreeTimesFast (book and music) with bookwriter/lyricist Naomi Matlow (Pallas Theater Table Read Series Winner 2017; The Script at Stage 74, 2017; New York Film Academy, Winter New Works Series 2016); Vinegar Tom (original music) by Caryl Churchill, The New School 2016; The Awakening (music) with bookwriter/lyricist Sarah Rebell (Reading, Musical Theatre Factory Developmental Series, Playwright’s Horizons, 2016); Teresa's one-act, The Bowl was developed in the Short Play LAB in 2014 and reprised in THE WORK GOES ON, a WW Short Play Retrospective, Dramatist’s Guild, ASCAP, he League of Professional Theatre Women and a co-founder of LezCab. M.F.A. in Musical Theatre Writing, NYU.
MICHELE MILLER’S full-length play, Real Estate, was a semi-finalist in the 2002 American Theatre Coop Playwriting Contest and received readings at Women's Project, Word of Mouth and Vital Theatre. Her one-act, Products of Conception, was produced in the Estrogenius Festival at Manhattan Theatre Source in 2003, the Strawberry Festival in 2004, and was a 2012 semifinalist for Eden Prairie Players Collection of One-Acts. Bedtime Stories was produced as part of the Development Series at Manhattan Theatre Source in 2004. Her short play Power Girls Support Group was part of the inaugural WW Short Play Festival in 2008 and in 2011 NPTC developed and produced her comedy, Mother of God! at the Richmond Shepard Theatre. With that play, Michele was also a finalist in the 2012 Princess Grace Awards. Her one-act comedy, Crazy For You, Baby was a finalist in the 2012 Estrogenius Festival where it was given a reading. Other short plays of Michele’s have been seen at Boston Playwrights' Theatre, the Women’s Project, and Blueberry Pond Theatre. She is currently developing a new musical, CHRONIC, with NPTC. She is a member of the Dramatists Guild of America and the League of Professional Theatre Women.
CYNTHIA ROBINSON (Playwright) is the 2012 Calvin B. Grimes Scholar (New York University) for her artistic merit. Honors include: Tribeca All-Access Open Stage (2004), Best New Play IRNE nomination (Ascension, 2006), Thomas Barbour Memorial Playwright's Award finalist (2008). Plays include: Nightfall (2013 Fire This Time Festival), Peola's Passing (Finalist, 2012 Samuel French OOB Theatre Festival, created and premiered in the Women's Work 2013 Short Play LAB), Gold Star Mother (EstroGenius 2012), Ascension (Our Place Theatre; 2009 National Black Theatre Festival; 2008 FringeNYC), Thunder: A Musical Memoir (2007 FringeNYC). She is a member of The Dramatists Guild and League of Professional Theatre Women. Her script Dancing on Eggshells, developed in the WW LAB, received an Off Broadway production at the Billie Holiday Theatre in Brooklyn in Spring 2015. Peola's Passing was one of two short plays presented by NPTC at the Alternative Theatre Festival in Bogotá, Colombia, in March 2016.
ALEXIS ROBLAN’s plays have been produced and developed in the US, UK, and Australia, by and at Clubbed Thumb, Ars Nova, Dixon Place, Project Y Theatre Company, FringeNYC, New Perspectives Theatre Company, The Motor Company, The Dirty Blondes, The Blank Theatre, Theatre 503, FRIGID New York, Edinburgh Fringe, World Interplay, and more. Alexis' The Andrew Play, is one of three scripts developed in the WW LAB to be presented as a staged reading for the 2018 Barbour Playwrighting Award. Originally from Coos Bay, Oregon, she is a graduate of the University of Southern California’s MFA in Dramatic Writing program, and she is currently a playwright-in-residence with Exquisite Corpse Company in Brooklyn, NY. Alexis has been a Finalist for the Clubbed Thumb Biennial Commission (Samuel), Seven Devils Playwrights Conference (And It Spins Twice), Nashville Rep's Ingram New Works Lab, and The O’Neill National Playwrights Conference (You Feel So Far Away Right Now). Her work as a screenwriter can be seen on the Go90 series Guidance (2017) and Love Daily (2018). www.alexisroblan.com
Sandra A. Daley-Sharif
SANDRA A. DALEY-SHARIF (Playwright) is pursuing her MFA in Playwriting at Hunter College. She is an OBIE Award winning producer, award winning playwright, director, actress, and dramaturg. Two of her plays made it to the Kilroys List 2017. She is a 2015 recipient of the LPTW Josephine Abady Award and was named a NYFA Fellowship Finalist for Playwriting. Sandra's Straddling the Edge is one of three scripts developed in the WW LAB to be presented as a staged reading for the 2018 Barbour Playwrighting Award. Les Fréres is a 2017 Eugene O’Neill semi-finalist and she received a SPACE on Ryder Farm Creative Residency, to develop her new play The Island Bull’s Wife. Other credits include: honorable mention for Katrina and Sandy, EstroGenius Festival;. Man in the Moon (short play, developed and presented by The Exquisite Corpse Company), Shirley and Iris (Going to the River Festival 2016,EST), Jake NPTC WW Short Play Fest and Silver Spring Stage). Her choreo-poem Genesis was presented May 2017 at 50in50: Writing Women Into Existence, curated by Dominique Morisseau. Los Samaritanos is being reviewed in the semi final round, for a week-long development at Women in Arizona Theatre. Sandra is a member of Beehive Dramaturgy Studio, founded to make skilled dramaturgy accessible to any playwright, director, composer, producer, or other theater practitioner.
Full-Length LAB Alumnae
Kate Bell (Lions of Babylon)
France-Luce Benson (Boat People)
Christine Toy Johnson (Internal Bleeding)
Donna Kaz (Music From Big Dead),
Andrea Lepcio (Tunnel Vision)
Kim Merrill (Marla's Prayers)
Marisa Petsakos (My Mother Flew B52s)
Holly Eaton (Balance Billing)
Cara Hall (It Started With a Kiss)