Global Playwriting Contest
â€œIf you can walk, you can work.â€
The Hummingbirds â€“ a comedy of menace â€“ takes place in the very near future where, if you are out of a job for too long, you are assigned one by the unemployment office. Having their routines broken after an act of violence, two employment officers, one single, one married, react quite differently in the aftermath. Funny, Fast and Foreboding.
Garret Jon Groenveld is a poet and playwright living in San Francisco, CA with an MA in Poetry and an MFA in Playwriting from San Francisco State University. He's a founding writer of PlayGround and an inaugural member of the Writers in Residence program at the Playwrights Foundation. His plays have appeared in San Francisco, Amsterdam and New York. He teaches playwriting at the New Conservatory Theatre Center.
The 2012 Playwriting Contest was for a ground breaking new play that addressed the theme of â€˜Presence/Absenceâ€™. There were 165 submissions from 26 countries. Over the course of the next year, the play will be presented in New York, Berlin, the Hague, Bucharest, Mexico City and Zaragoza (Spain).
The 2012 Finalists were:
|Garret Jon Groenveld||USA||The Hummingbirds|
|Verheyen Leen||Belgium||Small Film|
Thank you to all who submitted. In total we received 165 plays from 26 countries this year!
2012 Contest Mission
This contest is for a groundbreaking new play that addresses the theme of â€˜Presence/Absenceâ€™ (Whenever one is present somewhere, he/she is absent everywhere else. When does oneâ€™s absence become more significant that oneâ€™s presence?). The play should offer each director and cast in the various locations a unique opportunity to work on the development of a provocative and engaging text through the lenses of audiences around the world. This play should speak both on a personal and universal level. It should be ambitious and stretch the boundaries of what is theatrical. Though the characters can be few and the location specific, we are looking for big ideas and challenging questions. This is not only an opportunity to have a text exposed to different audiences, but a chance to engage in a cross-cultural exchange that fosters a collaboration with multiple directors around the world who will each have a personal vision of the play.
2011 Winner: Dancing, Not Dead (Russia)
John Freedman Biography
â€œTheatre should encourage us to make discoveries. It should disturb us. Rouse us. Irritate us. Make us realize what sort of world we live in.â€
- John Freedman in â€˜Russia Nowâ€™; 3 June 2009
John Freedman is an American writer who has lived in Moscow for over 20 years. He was born and raised in the Mojave Desert in Southern California. In 1980, just after graduating with a B.A. degree in Russian language and literature at U.C. Irvine, John attended a production of Nikolai Erdmanâ€™s The Suicide at Trinity Rep, which sowed the seed for his future. He completed a masterâ€™s degree in 1983 at George Washington University, and in 1988, while conducting research for his doctorate, he travelled to Moscow. What unfolded was a love story to rival all the classics he was studying: the following year he married the Russian actress, Oksana Mysina.
After receiving his Ph.D. from Harvard, John moved to Russia where he has been the chief theatre critic at The Moscow Times since 1992, a monthly columnist for Plays International since 1994, and has written or edited and translated nine books about Russian drama. He has translated over three dozen Russian plays that have been performed in the United States, Canada, South Africa, Australia and England, as well as published in numerous anthologies and journals. In 2006 under the general title of â€œProvoking Theaterâ€ he made two documentaries for Russia Today, an English-language, international Russian television company. He has been a partner of Philip Arnoultâ€™s Center for International Theatre Development since 2000. Since 2001, John has also unofficially served as a Jack-of-All-Trades in the founding and running of his wifeâ€™s theater, the Oksana Mysina Theatrical Brotherhood. In 2010, Double Edge Theater in Ashfield, MA., produced a play, The Firebird, that John co-wrote with Jennifer Johnson and the theatreâ€™s cast.