Featured playwrights named for 2016 Colorado New Play Summit

José Cruz González, left, and Mat Smart read from their devloping works at the Playwrights Slam in February. Photo by John Moore.
José Cruz González, left, and Mat Smart read from their developing works at the Playwrights Slam, a featured event at the 2015 Colorado New Play Summit in February. Photos by John Moore for the DCPA NewsCenter.

The DCPA Theatre Company has announced the four writers whose plays will be featured at the 11th annual Colorado New Play Summit in February: 

  • A.M.* by José Cruz González
  • Book of Will* by Lauren Gunderson
  • Two Degrees by Tira Palmquist
  • Midwinter* by Mat Smart

*DCPA Theatre Company commissions

González’s September Shoes was premiered by the DCPA Theatre Company in 2005. Last spring, he and Smart both mentored finalists for DCPA Education’s statewide student playwriting competition. Gunderson is a beneficiary of the Theatre Company’s Women’s Voices Fund.

The Summit, to be held Feb. 13-14 and 19-20, 2016, is one of the nation’s premier showcases of new plays. In its first decade, 44 new plays were introduced at the Summit, and more than half have returned as fully staged Theatre Company productions. 2016 Summit attendees will attend fully stage world premieres of Theresa Rebeck’s The Nest and Tanya Saracho’s FADE, both DCPA commissions that were introduced at the 2015 Summit.

Each year, the DCPA Theatre Company retains leading playwrights to develop ideas for new plays. Three of thr four featured plays in 2016 will be DCPA commissions.

Recent Summit premieres include Matthew Lopez’s The Legend of Georgia McBride, which just finished an extended Off-Broadway run at New York’s MCC Theatre; Samuel D. Hunter’s The Whale; Marcus Gardley’s black odyssey; Karen Zacarias’ Just Like Us; and Jeffrey Haddow and Neal Hampton’s Sense & Sensibility The Musical; Eric Schmiedl’s adaptation of Kent Haruf’s Benediction; Catherine Trieschmann’s The Most Deserving, and Dick Scanlan’s reimagined version of The Unsinkable Molly Brown.

The Summit has expanded two weekends so that it can provide participating playwrights an additional week with directors, actors and dramaturgs. The schedule allows for two weekends of readings before the public and industry professionals.

The 2016 expanded Summit programming schedule will also include a panel on devised work by Third Rail Projects, a Local Playwrights’ Slam hosted by the Athena Project, and finalist readings for this years’ student playwriting competition.

The 2016 featured plays at a glance:

A.M. by José Cruz González
A Theatre Company commission

Lucha and Bolie want to start their own all-female mariachi band, but find that breaking into the male-dominated musical form is more difficult than they thought. But Lucha pushes ahead, driven by the desire to use music to heal her broken family.

Lauren GundersonBook of Will by Lauren Gunderson
A Theatre Company commission

After Shakespeare’s death, two of the remaining actors from his theatre company scramble to find his scripts, or in some cases reassemble them, and publish them in a single Folio edition. If not for their resourcefulness and dedication, some of the world’s most famous plays might have been lost forever.

Tira PalmquistTwo Degrees by Tira Palmquist

Emma, a scientist who studies ice core samples in Greenland, has been invited to the nation’s capital to share her findings on climate change with the Senate. But when her husband’s recent death starts erupting into flashbacks, she can’t seem to get a grip on herself. Two Degrees charts the tumultuous inner life of a woman poised to make a difference in the global sphere.

Midwinter by Mat Smart
A Theatre Company commission
It’s the dead of winter in McMurdo Station, Antarctica. No planes in or out for six months. No sunlight for four months. And yet somehow there’s romance in the air. Watch love run amok in Midwinter by Mat Smart, who trained for this play by spending three months at the South Pole.

2016 Colorado New Play Summit: Ticket information

Hosted by DCPA Playwriting Fellow Matthew Lopez

First weekend: Saturday, Feb. 13, and Sunday, Feb. 14, 2016
Groups may reserve in advance – contact us at groupsales@dcpa.org or 303.446.4829

Second weekend: Friday, February 19, and Sunday, Feb. 21, 2016

Including an additional workshop presentation with Third Rail Projects

Press for the 2015 Colorado New Play Summit

Get Me Rewrite: The Colorado New Play Summit Is a Developing Story
by John Moore, feature for American Theatre magazine, Feb. 24, 2015

How the Colorado New Play Summit Went From Local Gem to National Event
by Diep Tran, American Theatre magazine, Feb. 13, 2015
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