Untitled Document
June 4 -28, 2015
June 25-28, 2015

January – March 2015
In School Tour

August 6-Sept.6, 2015
Empire Stage
Sept.10-13, 2015
Fillmore Miami Beach
at the Jackie Gleason Theatre
June 16-28, 2015
Adrienne Arsht Center


2013 CityWrights Presenting Artists and Experts;

Andie Arthur, Executive Director, South Florida Theatre League & Dramatists Guild Florida Regional Representative

CityWrights Industry Expert, 2013

Andie Arthur is a playwright and theatre administrator, is the executive director of the South Florida Theatre League, a service organization dedicated to the nurture and growth of the South Florida community and a co-founding Artistic Director of Lost Girls Theatre. Ms. Arthur is also the South Florida Regional Representative for the Dramatists Guild, the literary manager for Naked Stage, a founding board member of City of Refuge, and was the coordinator for City Theatre’s first CityWrights Conference in June 2011. Ms. Arthur received her BFA in playwriting from the Theatre School at DePaul University in 2005, and has since worked in theatre in Chicago and Florida. She is also a contributor for the nationally recognized 2amtheatre blog (www.2amtheatre.com).

Leslie Ayvazian, 2013 Summer Shorts Festival Playwright, The Favor

City Theatre National Award Finalist, 2013

CityWrights Presenting Artist, 2013

Ms. Ayvazianis the author of 8 full-length plays and 7 one act plays, published by Samuel French and Dramatist Play Service. Nine Armenians won the John Gassner/Outer Critics Award for best new play, The Roger L. Stevens Award, and second place for the Susan Smith Blackburn Prize. Rosemary and I received an honorable mention from the Susan Smith Blackburn jury. She has had commissions from the Manhattan Theatre Club, Windancer Productions and South Coast Repertory Theatre. Make Me, directed by Christian Parker, was produced in New York by the Atlantic Theatre Company. High Dive was produced at the Long Wharf Theatre and the Manhattan Class Company, directed by David Warren, and went on to be produced in Poland and Slovakia. Her short film, “Every Three Minutes” starring Olympia Dukakis was produced by Showtime and won a Telly Award. Her play Deaf Day was produced as a short film in Syria last year by Rana Kaz Kaz. Her current play Out of the City has received workshops at the Manhattan Theatre Club and the Southampton Writers’ Conference. City Theatre has a long relationship with Ayvazian, and has produced many of her short plays, and High Dive. Leslie is an adjunct professor of playwriting at the Columbia University Graduate School of the Arts. Her credits as an actress include a recurring role on “Law & Order – SVU” and roles on Broadway in Lost in Yonkers and Naked Girl on the Appian Way.

Nancy Barnett,CityWrights Coordinator

Executive Director of the National New Play Network;

Nan is a new play advocate, a developer of theatre artists, and a producer of the work they create. She was a founding company member and the long-time Managing Director of the nation’s largest regional theatre producing exclusively new and developing plays, Florida Stage. She regularly provides workshops, coaching and classes for artists in audition preparation, the business of the theatre, and career transition, and serves as a moderator, discussion leader and speaker across the country on various subjects, including diversity in the theatre, developmental processes and the long-term effects of the recession on the field. Nan served as the President of National New Play Network, has sat on committees and panels for the National Endowment for the Arts, National Alliance of Musical Theatres, The O’Neill Theatre Conference, Theatre Communications Group, the League of Resident Theatres, the Kennan Foundation, the Mellon Foundation, Florida’s Division of Cultural Affairs, the William Inge Festival, Shakespeare Theatre Association Conference, and the American Voices New Play Institute. A graduate of North Carolina School of the Arts Professional Actor Training Program, she is the winner of the Theatre League of South Florida’s Remy Award for service to the theatrical community, the 2012 Fallon Award for excellence in the professional theatre from the Florida Professional Theatre Association, and a two-time winner of the region’s Carbonell Award as an actress.

Michael Benchetrit, law firm of Akerman Senterfitt Miller Weissler Alhadeff & Sitterson, P.A.

CityWrights Legal Expert (CLE track);

Mr. Benchetrit’s practice is focused on immigration matters for national and multinational companies in the financial services, real estate development, manufacturing, engineering, and information services industries. He assists foreign nationals in obtaining intra-company transferee visas, treaty trader and treaty investors visas, specialty worker visas, and U.S. Permanent Residency. He also assists companies in developing and streamlining internal processes for the transfer of employees, and training in-house legal personnel in preparing applications and petitions for the temporary admission of foreign nationals. Michael’s experience includes representation of individuals in matters before immigration trial judges and filing briefs before the Board of Immigrations Appeals, the U.S. Immigrations and Naturalization Administrative Appeals Office, and the Board of Alien Labor Certification Appeals. Mr. Benchetrit received his Juris Doctorate from Thomas M. Cooley Law School in 1995. He received his B.A. from York University in 1991 and his M.A. from University of Guelph in 1996.

Laura Bruney, Executive Director, Arts & Business Council, Miami

CityWrights Presenter (CLE track);

As Executive Director of the Arts & Business Council of Miami for the past 25 years, Laura Bruney has helped strengthen South Florida’s cultural community. Under her direction ABC has become a vigorous and effective catalyst for building working partnerships between the corporate & cultural communities. Since 1985, the Arts & Business Council has been South Florida’s leading service organization for the arts. Working to “keep the arts in business” by promoting mutually beneficial partnerships between the private sector and non-profit arts groups, Ms. Bruney has created innovative programs which leverage expertise, resources and leadership talent from the business world and direct them to the arts. Since 1988, Ms. Bruney has responsible for the day-to-day operations and management of Council staff, policy and programs. She works closely with the boards and executive staff of over 500 cultural organizations and recruits, trains and manages over 50 executive consultants and 2,500 direct service volunteers from the corporate community. The Arts & Business Council of Miami provides a myriad of volunteer opportunities to involve business professionals and their companies in the arts, including Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts. Ms. Bruney has been honored with an American Red Cross Spectrum for Women award, Miami Today’s Up & Comers Award – Arts & Culture Category, Greater Miami Chamber Special Recognition Award, Miami Beach Chamber’s Non-Profit Leadership Award, Who’s Who of American Women, International Who’s Who of Professional and Business Women, Miami Arts Exchange Maxie Recognition Award, and Who’s Who of Women Executives.Ms. Bruney received a Masters in Public Administration from the University of Miami, School of Business and a Bachelor of Science in Communications from the University of Florida. Prior to her work with the Arts & Business Council Ms. Bruney worked as Director of Instructional Resources for the University of Miami School of Medicine and before that served as a Medical Television Producer with the University of Miami. She worked with CBS Sports on a freelance basis for several years.

Robert Caisley, Associate Professor of Theatre, University of Idaho

Trial Consultant, CityWrights Presenting Artist and Expert (CLE track);

Robert Caisley is an Associate Professor of Theatre & Film, and Head of the Dramatic Writing Program at the University of Idaho. He is a playwright, producer and director of theatre, and has worked in the entertainment industry as a Creative Consultant for the History channel, Triage Entertainment, and for North by Northwest Productions, Netter Digital Entertainment and New Wave Entertainment. Professor Caisley’s play, “Winter,” World Premiered in February 2012 at the new Theatre in Miami, Florida. Professor Caisley received his B.A. from Eastern Illinois University and his M.F.A. from Illinois State University. Professor Caisley has presented his trial storytelling workshops for the Trial Lawyers Association of British Columbia, Bill Barton’s Litigation Boot Camp, Washington State Trial Lawyer’s Association, the Ray McNichols American Inn of court and the Law School at the University of Idaho. He has consulted on a variety of matters, including personal injury and medical malpractice, legal malpractice, products liability and criminal defense cases. Professor Caisley’s article, “On Universality: Storytelling in the Courtroom” first appeared in the December 2007 issue of WSTLA’s Trial news, and was most recently reprinted in the January 2008 edition of the Rhode Island Association for Justice News.

Steven E. Eisenberg, law firm of Lipscomb, Eisenberg & Baker, P.L.,

CityWrights Legal Expert (CLE track);

Steven Eisenberg focuses his practice on complex commercial litigation, intellectual property, construction and entertainment law. He has been listed in The Best Lawyers in America since 2006, as Top Lawyer by the South Florida Legal Guide and as a Florida Super Lawyer. He is AV-Rated Martindale-Hubbell. As a trial lawyer, Mr. Eisenberg has tried various matters to verdict, including the successful defense of a three-month federal court theft of trade secrets jury case. He is an American Arbitration Association-certified arbitrator and arbitrates cases related to commercial, construction and entertainment law. He began his legal career as a law clerk to the Honorable Lenore Nesbitt of the United States District Court for the Southern District of Florida. Steve also serves as general counsel, on a pro bono basis, and as Chair of the Board of Directors to New Theatre in Coral Gables. He is a frequent lecturer on intellectual property and entertainment law issues.

David H. Faux, Dramatists Guild of America

CityWrights Legal Expert (CLE track)

Mr. Fauxpractices Intellectual Property, Entertainment, Art, and Business/Commercial Law in New York. He currently serves as In-House Counsel and Board Secretary for the Dramatists Legal Defense Fund in New York. His past and present clients include individuals and organizations involved in the fashion, sports & fitness, fine arts, photography and graphic design industries. Mr. Faux received his Juris Doctorate from Brooklyn Law School in 2005, his M.A. in 2002 from the University of California, Santa Barbara, and his M.S. from the University of Oregon in 1999. Before becoming an attorney, Mr. Faux spent several years as a music journalist and then as a publicist in the Northwest. He spent a year in South Korea as a Fulbright Scholar. His years in the music and fine arts industries as an entrepreneur, scholar and international traveler inform his approach to the law, giving him an insight not achieved by most other lawyers.Mr. Faux sits on the Executive Committee that represents the business of Entertainment and Arts lawyers for New York State Bar Association. He comes to CityWrights as part of the Dramatists Guild Fund Traveling Masters Program and has served as Director of Business Affairs for the Dramatists Guild of America, Inc. since 2007. David has served on a wide range of panels involving subjects from theater financing and theater contracts to stage-to-screen adaptations and obtaining underlying rights. Mr. Faux is a member of the New York State Bar Association Copyright and Trademark Committee, IP Law Committee and the Phil Cowan/BMI Memorial Scholarship Committee.

Alan H. Fein, Stearns Weaver Miller Weissler Alhadeff & Sitterson, P.A.

City Theatre Board Chairman

CityWrights Legal Expert (CLE track);

Mr. Fein is a Shareholder at and a member of the Board of Directors of Stearns Weaver Miller Weissler Alhadeff & Sitterson, P.A. For over three decades, Mr. Fein has successfully handled complex business litigation in South Florida and in the leading business courts in the nation, including the Delaware Court of Chancery, the Delaware Supreme Court, the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York and the U.S. Courts of Appeals for the Second Circuit, Eleventh Circuit and the District of Columbia. At the same time, he has developed one of the region’s most vibrant sports law practices, and brought vision and leadership to a number of community leadership roles. In particular, Mr. Fein focuses his practice on complex civil litigation, professional sports representation and litigation, defamation and libel law, corporate governance disputes, directors’ and officers´ liability, accountant malpractice, architect malpractice and banking litigation. Mr. Fein received his Juris Doctorate with honors from Georgetown University Law Center in 1979. He received his B.S., with honors, from the Wharton School of Finance and Commerce at the University of Pennsylvania in 1976. Prior to joining Stearns Weaver Miller, Mr. Fein was Assistant to the White House Domestic Policy Staff, and Aide to the Special Assistant to President Carter for Government Reorganization. Mr. Fein also served as Legislative Assistant to the Speaker of the Florida House of Representatives. He has been a proud member and shareholder of Stearns Weaver Miller, joining the firm as its tenth lawyer in 1979, and helping guide the firm’s growth over the next decades. Mr. Fein is the Founding Chair of City Theatre, the Chair-Elect of the Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts for 2013-2015, Former Chair of the Miami-Dade County Cultural Affairs Council, Sport Alumni Chair of the University of Pennsylvania Department of Intercollegiate Athletics and a member of the Alumni Advisory Board of the Wharton Sports Business Initiative.

Nick Gandiello, Young Playwrights, Inc.

Teaching Artist for CityWrights Scholars & Teacher Training, 2013

Nick Gandiello is a playwright and screenwriter from Long Island, New York. He is a member of the Ars Nova Play Group, and was selected as a finalist for P73‘s 2013 Playwriting Fellowship. In NYC, Gandiello’s play Travis Winters was the winner of Best Play and Audience Favorite at the American Globe Theatre, and his play Screen was presented in the Samuel French OOB Play Festival at the Lion Theatre. Other NYC writing credits include Still Jackie with UglyRhino Productions, Keepers with Unity Stage Company, and Can’t Imagine with BoX the Outside Theatre. In 2010, Gandiello was invited to a writer’s residency at Blue Mountain Center, where he worked on his play Off the Realness, which was a finalist for the Ojai Playwrights Conference. His play Oceanside was workshopped by MCC Theater and Page 73 Productions, and was a semi-finalist for the Alec Baldwin Fellowship at Singers Forum and the Firehouse Theatre Project’s Festival of New American Plays. He has developed a full length screenplay with 7th Empire Media and a television pilot with Ready Set Go Productions. Nick is the Literary Manager of Young Playwrights Inc., where he has also been a teaching artist, dramaturg, and script evaluator. MFA Playwriting, New School for Drama.

Gail Garrisan, Stage Director

CityWrights Presenting Artist;

Gail Garrisan’s workshops on Audition Techniques, Breath and Body Exploration and Monologue Building have been presented nationally. A professional director, Ms. Garrisan has directed over 75 professional productions at numerous venues throughout the country, and at local theaters such as Florida Stage and New Theater, Mosaic Theater and Coconut Grove Playhouse. She as the Founding Artistic Director of City Theatre. She is currently on the faculty of New World School of the Arts College Conservatory, and teaches Acting, Scene Study and Directing. She has had a private coaching practice for professional actors and business professionals for over 25 years. Ms. Garrisan is a member of the Stage Directors and Choreographers, Theatre Communications Group, the Professional Theater Association, and the Theatre League of South Florida.

Lauren Gunderson, 2013 Summer Shorts Festival Playwright, The Amazing Adventures of Dr. Wonderful (And her Dog!)

CityWrights Master Playwright, 2013

Lauren 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 US including South Cost Rep (Emilie, Silent Sky), The Kennedy Center (The Amazing Adventures of Dr. Wonderful And Her Dog!), Berkeley Rep, San Francisco Playhouse, Marin Theatre, The Magic, Actors Express, Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Portland Center Stage, Second Stage, 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 Cycle, Exit, Pursued By A Bear, is now published with Playscripts, as is the second, Toil and Trouble. She is a Playwright in Residence at The Playwrights Foundation, and a proud Dramatists Guild member. LaurenGunderson.com and @LalaTellsAStory

Matt Hoverman, 2013 Summer Shorts Festival Playwright, The Student

CityWrights Teaching Artist, 2013

Mattlives in NYC. His plays include Who You See Here and The Glintwhich have both been optioned for Broadway, and The Glint just had a successful Broadway reading, starring Beau Bridges, Jean Smart, Michael McKean and SNL’s Cecily Strong. Other plays include In Transit (2006 Fringe NYC Best Playwriting award), The Student (2009 Samuel French OOB Short Play Festival Winner), The Audience (co-book writer, 2005 Drama Desk Best New Musical award Nominee), Christmas Shorts (Naked angels, SoHo Playhouse, Bricks Theatre, Maples Rep – published by Samuel French), Searching for God in Suburbia (Huntington Theatre’s Breaking Ground Festival, axial Theatre, The Acting Company). Matt is a recipient of an Edward Albee Foundation Fellow 2008. As an actor, Matt has worked at Yale Rep, the La Jolla Playhouse, the Acting Company, Late Night w/Conan O’Brien – and has voiced villains on many cartoons, including Pokemon, Yu-Gi-Oh!, Sonic X, The WinX Club, Chaotic and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. He also is a solo show teacher/director. Matt’s students include winners of the 2005, 2009 & 2010 Fringe NYC Best Solo Show awards. Matt holds a BA in Playwriting; UCSD and a MFA in acting from Brown University. www.MattHoverman.com

Tina Howe, Dramatists Guild FoundationTraveling Master, 2013

CityWrights Master Artist, 2013

Tina’s plays include The Nest, Birth and After Birth, Museum, The Art of Dining, Painting Churches, Coastal Disturbances, Approaching Zanzibar, One Shoe Off, Pride’s Crossing, Such Small Hands, Rembrandt’s Gift, and new translations of Eugène Ionesco’s The Bald Soprano and The Lesson, as well as a host of shorter plays. These works premiered at the New York Shakespeare Festival, the Kennedy Center, Second Stage Theatre, the Old Globe Theatre, Lincoln Center Theater, the Ac- tors Theatre of Louisville, and the Atlantic Theater Company. Her most recent play, Chasing Manet, opened at Primary Stages in the spring of 2009. Among her many awards are an Obie for Distinguished Playwriting, a Tony nomination for Best Play, an Outer Critics Circle Award, a Rockefeller grant, two NEA Fellowships, a Guggenheim Fellowship, the American Academy of Arts and Letters Award in Literature, the Dramatists Guild Fund Madge Evans/Sidney Kingsley Award for Outstanding Achievement in the Theatre, the New York Drama Critics’ Circle Award, two honorary degrees, and the William Inge Award for Distinguished Achievement in the American Theatre. Twice a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize, Howe has been a visiting professor at Hunter College since 1990 and has also taught master classes at New York University, UCLA, Columbia University, and Carnegie Mellon University. Her works can be read in numerous anthologies as well as in Coastal Disturbances: Four Plays by Tina Howe, Approaching Zanzibar and Other Plays (both Theatre Communications Group), and most recently her translations of Ionesco’s The Bald Soprano and The Lesson (Grove Press). Howe is proud to have served on the council of the Dramatists Guild of America since 1990.

Amanda Junco, Young Playwrights, Inc.

Coordinator & Teaching Artist for CityWrights Scholars & Teacher Training, 2013

Amanda is the Associate Director at Young Playwrights Inc. with five years of experience at the organization producing, casting, working with and mentoring young playwrights, and generally keeping everything running smoothly so every writer through Young Playwrights Inc.’s doors has the most incredible and inspiring experience possible. Her directing credits include: Metaphors; The Serpent (Buffalo, NY); The Secret Life of Roses (Rochester, NY); Advanced Playwriting Workshop Readings 2011 & 2012; Urban Retreat Reading Series; Loganheim, the Clock Smasher; Legs; Three Ring Platform; Orangutan & Lulu; and Island (New York, NY). In her clearly abundant spare time, Amanda is the Artistic & Managing Director for Black Cat Theatre Group, a New York theater company dedicated to reviving theater’s place in popular culture by exposing the greater community to work that provokes introspection and social awareness; reinstating the theatre as a cultural force inspiring both individual and societal change.

David Bar Katz, 2013 Summer Shorts Festival Playwright, Mothra vs. The Casting Director: An Allegory

City Theatre National Award Winner, 2013

CityWrights Presenting Artist, 2013

David is a playwright whose play The History of Invulnerability premiered at the Cincinnati Playhouse where it received numerous awards including the American Theater Critics Association Citation as one of the top three American plays of 2010. Katz co-wrote and directed the Tony Award nomi­nated show, FREAK, and Katz received an Emmy nomination for the HBO production. Katz is a member of LAByrinth Theater Company which produced his plays Philip Roth in Khartoum (at The Public Theater) and The Atmosphere of Memory (starring Ellen Burstyn) and has presented six of his plays in their annual Barn Series. Katz is currently writing a television show for Showtime (produced by Denis Leary) and a ‘tween’ sci-fi novel.

John Manzelli, City Theatre Producing Artistic Director

John is proud to be at the helm of City Theatre for his second season as Producing Artistic Director. In addition to Summer Shorts, John is extremely proud to have produced/directed Standing On Ceremony: The Gay Marriage Plays (starring Bryan Batt and Bruce Vilanch) and the extremely successful musical cabaret Dirty Little Secrets, starring Jai Rodriguez. Manzelli brings an accomplished reputation to City as both a performer and director. Prior to joining City, John served as Associate Artistic Director of the award-winning Naked Stage Company (which he co-founded). Under his leadership, Naked Stage was awarded a Silver Palm Award for “Best Emerging Theatre Co.” and a Visionary Award (www.miamiartzine.com) for the creation of the ground-breaking 24 Hour Theatre Project. Some of John’s more recent directing credits include; No Exit (Naked Stage), The Tempest (New Theatre), and Macon City (Naked Stage), for which he was awarded the Carbonell Award for Best Lighting Design. As an actor, John currently portrays the recurring role of Sol Drucker on TV’s “Magic City” (STARZ). John proudly serves as an Assistant Professor of Theatre at Barry University.

Amy Marsh, Literary Director for Samuel French, Inc.

CityWrights Industry Presenter, 2013

Ms. Marsh works as the Literary Manager with Samuel French, Inc. where she reviews over 1,200 submissions annually and has helped bring over 400 new publications to print.  She also doubles as the Literary Coordinator for the Samuel French Off Off Broadway Short Play Festival, the longest-running short play Festival in the United States. As a dramaturg, Ms. Marsh has worked to develop projects with Concrete Temple Theatre, Elf Queen Productions, The Hourglass Group, The Deconstructive Theatre Project, Columbia University, and Spectre Box Production in New York City. She has also worked with Annex Theatre, Emerald City Scene, and A.C.T. in Seattle; iDiom Theatre and Western Washington University in Bellingham, Washington; and the Alumni Theatre in Toronto. She serves as an Associate Artist with Concrete Temple Theatre, an Artistic Advisory Board Member for the [claque], and is one-half the creative performance collaboration team Arm and El Beau.

Ricky J. Martinez, Artistic Director, New Theatre

Executive Committee Member, National New Play Network

CityWrights Presenting Artist, 2013

Ricky J. Martinez is New Theatre’s Artistic Director. He is a Miami-born Cuban-American proudly residing and working in South Florida. Schooled at the New World School for the Arts, he studied with Jorge C. Guerra, Richard Armstrong, Lee Michael Cohen, Richard Janaro, Carol Cadby, Clay James, and Kimberly Daniel. In addition to being an accomplished actor, dancer, and choreographer, Mr. Martinez has also staged some of his own work, including the following: Postlude 1, Bed In Heaven, EPAR, Concerning Phaedra, Snow; ED. L and CALBO, a one-man show commissioned by the Miami Light Project, which traveled to Germany and was part of the Florida-Brazil festival. Martinez has had readings of his own plays at various theatres and festivals, including Actor’s Playhouse, New Theatre, East Village Experimental Theatre, Lavender Footlights Festival, and Shotgun Productions, as part of its Cuban Artist Week/ INTAR in New York. He is the recipient of two Downtown Miami Playwrighting Program mentorships with playwrights Arthur Kopit and Tina Howe. The play has been invited for inclusion in the Cuban Arts Festival, NY for May of 2007. His play, Sin Full Heaven has been invited for inclusion in the Cuban Arts Festival, NY for May of 2007.

Kelly R. Melchiondo, Stearns Weaver Miller Weissler Alhadeff & Sitterson, P.A.

City Theatre Board Member

CityWrights Legal Expert (CLE track);

Kelly R. Melchiondo is a Shareholder in the Litigation Department at Stearns Weaver Miller Weissler Alhadeff & Sitterson, P.A. and is a member of the Firm’s Hiring Committee. Ms. Melchiondo’s practice focuses on contract and business torts litigation, professional malpractice defense, appellate litigation. Ms. Melchiondo litigates in the United States federal and state courts in matters involving disputes over control of partnerships and limited liability companies, members’ breaches of fiduciary duty to limited liability companies, fraud and other business torts. She defends law firms and accounting firms against professional malpractice claims. She has represented Miami hotel owners and a Miami sports team in disputes involving the professional negligence of design professionals and general contractors. Ms. Melchiondo received her Juris Doctorate from Boston University in 2002. While in law school Ms. Melchiondo served as a director of the Edward M. Stone Moot Court. She received her B.S. in Broadcast Journalism and American History from the University of Miami in 1998. Ms. Melchiondo is a graduate of the Greater Miami Chamber of Commerce’s Leadership Miami Program in 2009. She has been a proud member of City Theatre’s Board of Directors for over five years, and currently serves as City Theatre’s Secretary.

Bruce Miller, Head of Theatricals at Washington Square Arts & Film

CityWrights Industry Expert, 2013

Bruce is the Head of Theatricals at Washington Square Arts & Films, a production and management company with offices in New York and Los Angeles.  In this capacity, Miller manages a roster of playwrights, screenwriters, composers, and directors, for stage, television, and film.  Additionally, he oversees the company’s “Readings and Lectures” roster, booking speaking engagements and personal appearances for best-selling authors.  Prior to his time at Washington Square, Miller was a booking agent at The Road Company, booking touring productions ranging from David Copperfield to The Vagina Monologues, from Wicked to Grease.  An MFA graduate from the Yale School of Drama’s management program, Miller has also worked as a management associate with Stuart Thompson on the Broadway productions of Art and The Chairs (among others); in the education office at The Guthrie Theater; and served as the managing director of the Yale Cabaret.

Brett Reynolds, Young Playwrights, Inc.

Teaching Artist for CityWrights Scholars & Teacher Training, 2013

Brett W. Reynolds’ career in the theater spans four decades and two continents. For Young Playwrights Inc.: directed Caitlin Parrish’s The View From Tall; Lauren Gunderson’s Parts They Call Deep and Julia Jarcho’s Nursery; Jerome Hairston’s The Love of Bullets; David E. Rodriguez’s I’m Not Stupid and numerous original staged readings (including Madeleine George’s The Most Massive Woman Wins, Graham Parkes’ The Writer, and Melanie Wallner’s Simultaneity); Set Designer, Young Playwrights Festival XXIV. For the Independent Shakespeare Company: directed Henry V (Odyssey Theater); Macbeth (London at The King’s Head, Los Angeles at CSUN/Northridge and Samuel Goldman Amphitheater) and Noel Coward’s Still Life. Resident playwright for Great American Children’s Theater: The Secret Garden (Dallas Theater Center, LA Times Pick of the Week), Journey to the Center of the Earth (Pentages, LA), The Wind and the Willows (Wilshire, LA) and The Velveteen Rabbit (with music by Tom Kochan). As an educator, Reynolds has trained teachers worldwide in Young Playwrights Inc.’s Write A Play! Curriculum (Guthrie Theater, North Carolina Theater Arts Education Conferences, Texas Educational Theater Association, New York State Theater Education Association). Recently, Reynolds was invited by Victoria University to work with Culture Shack in Melbourne, Australia, bringing Young Playwrights Inc.’s work to their immigrant and refugee populations. Consultancies: President Clinton’s Summit for America’s Future, Massachusetts Arts Council. He has taught for Young Playwrights Inc. since 1993.

Glenn Rissman, Stearns Weaver Miller Weissler Alhadeff & Sitterson, P.A.

CityWrights Legal Expert (CLE track);

Glenn Rissman is a Shareholder in the Labor and Employment Department at Stearns Weaver Miller Weissler Alhadeff & Sitterson, P.A.. Mr. Rissman’s practice focuses on employment law, immigration, and accessibility. Mr. Rissman regularly represents clients in a wide variety of matters arising under Title VII, Section 1981, ADA, ADEA, FMLA, WARN Act, FLSA, ERISA, and the Florida Civil Rights Act. He also advises employers regarding hiring, termination, and discipline of employees; compliance with federal, state, and local discrimination laws and wage and hour issues; sexual harassment matters; I-9 compliance and unauthorized employment; and mass layoffs and plant closings. Mr. Rissman also practices in the area of employment-based immigration and naturalization. He represents employers and investors seeking temporary visas and permanent residence for employees and has successfully obtained non-immigrant visas (H-1B, L-1, TN, O, P, E) for employers in industries such as retail, hospitality, pharmaceutical, and manufacturing. Mr. Rissman also counsels clients regarding I-9 compliance, audits and inspections. Mr. Rissman also defends and advises institutions with respect to public accessibility for persons with disabilities. Mr. Rissman has defended dozens of public accessibility lawsuits brought under Title III of the Americans with Disabilities Act. Mr. Rissman received his Juris Doctorate, with honors, from the University of Florida in 1991, and his B.A., magna cum laude, from Duke University in 1998. He is a frequent speaker on employment issues and is a regular contributor to Belabor the Point a blog dedicated to the latest developments in labor and employment law.

Rachel Routh, Executive Director of the Dramatists Guild Fund

CityWrights Industry Expert, 2013

Rachel is the Executive Director of the Dramatists Guild Fund and consults on both commercial and non-profit theater projects. While working with Broadway producer Amanda Lipitz (Legally Blonde, Dirty Rotten Scoundrels), she focused on developing original musicals for Broadway and television. Rachel also has produced readings and showcases in the New York International Fringe Festival, Midtown International Theater Festival, New  York  Musical Theatre  Festival, and Kerrigan-Lowdermilk’s five-concert YOU MADE THIS TOUR.

Geri Satin, President, Satin Image Consulting and Satin Trial Consulting

City Theatre Board of Directors

CityWrights Legal Expert (CLE track);

Geri Satin is the founder and managing member of Satin Image Consulting and Satin Trial Consulting. Geri is a certified color analyst, image consultant, and trial attorney. Geri is one of the only image consultants in the country to specialize in trial image consulting for lawyers, litigants, experts, and witnesses. Geri combines her firsthand legal experience with body language, color and fit psychology, grooming, communication skills, and other proven image consulting techniques, as well as an analysis of the facts and theme of a particular case, the parties involved, the judge or jury, venue, public perception, and other often-overlooked aspects of a case. Geri’s trial consulting services include Trial Preparation for Attorneys and Their Clients, Color and Fit Psychology in Dress, Body Language Analysis, Verbal Communication Skills, Overseeing Trial Wardrobe, “Likeability” Training, Witness and Expert Preparation, Incorporating Theme into Courtroom Image, Neutralizing Dominant and Weak Litigants. Geri graduated Phi Beta Kappa from the University of Florida, and magna cum laude from the University of Miami School of Law, winning the law review writing competition, receiving the Thomas Ewald Memorial Award for Excellence in Litigation Skills, and serving as an editor on the University of Miami Law Review. Prior to starting her consultancy, Geri spent a number of years practicing complex commercial litigation at one of Florida’s premier law firms, during which time she represented a professional basketball team, performing arts center, South American country, and multiple international banking institutions. Geri currently acts as the Secretary and VP of Education for the Florida Chapter of the Association of Image Consultants International. She is also the incoming President-Elect of the Dade County Bar Association, Young Lawyers Section, and a member of the American Society of Trial Consultants. Geri also proudly serves as a member of the City Theatre Board of Directors.

Susan Schulman,Owner, Susan Schulman, A Literary Agency

CityWrights Industry Expert, 2013

Susan specializes in representing foreign rights, motion picture, television and allied rights, live stage including commercial theater, opera and dance adaptations, new media rights including e-book and digital applications and other subsidiary rights on behalf of North American publishers and literary agents. The agency also represents its own clients domestically and internationally in all markets. The agency has a particular interest in fiction and non-fiction books for, by and about women and women’s issues and interests. The agency’s areas of focus include: commercial and literary fiction and non-fiction, specifically narrative memoir, politics, economics, social issues, history, urban planning, finance, law, health, psychology, body/mind/sprit, and creativity and writing. The agency was founded in 1980 by Susan Schulman who, prior to establishing her own agency, was an agent at International Creative Management in the Literary Department. Ms. Schulman also taught History of the English Language and Linguistics, and Renaissance Drama and American Literature courses at the college level. She served as an Associate Publisher of Ohio University Press, where she acquired over 100 titles for the Press.

Scott Shiller, Executive Director, Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts

CityWrights Industry Expert (CLE track);

Mr. Shiller joined the Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts of Miami-Dade County in October 2007 where he serves as Executive Vice President. In his role at the Arsht Center, Mr. Shiller oversees the Center’s major programming and marketing initiatives and has been credited with the growth of broad-based community support for the county owned facility. Mr. Shiller has presented and produced engagements in New York, Boston, DC, Chicago, Miami, San Francisco, Los Angeles, and Philadelphia. In 2011, Shiller was named to the prestigious 40 under 40 list by South Florida Business Journal. Mr. Shiller is dedicated to the creation of new work and has presented 12 World Premier Plays and Musicals on the Arsht Center’s stages. He has managed thousands of events spanning the Concert, Comedy, Television, Dance, Jazz and Broadway genres.

Roland Tec, Director of Membership, Dramatists Guild

CityWrights Industry Expert, 2013

Roland is a Director, Writer, and Producer of feature films and theatre. He formally trained as a composer and has occasionally scored his own films. From 1988-1999, he served as Artistic Director of Boston’s innovative New Opera Theatre Ensemble, which mounted opera in such unlikely venues as the Boston Public Library, the Danco Furniture Showroom and the Charles Hayden Planetarium. Since his move to New York City in the Spring of 2000, several of Tec’s plays have been produced Off-Broadway, including: Bodily Function (winner:Yukon Gold Award for Excellence in Playwriting at the 2000 Edward Albee Last Frontier Theatre Conference) Gratuitous Nudity (co-written with John Yearley) and The Wreck Behind Us and The Rubber Room (co-written with Gary Garrison). His film credits include: All the Rage, Mira Nair’s Monsoon Wedding,Defiance, which he co-produced for director Edward Zwick, and We Pedal Uphill (Stories from the States). He is currently in production on Thunder Every Day, a documentary about the friendship between artists David Hockney and Larry Stanton as seen through the lens of Super8 footage shot of the two on Fire Island by Mr. Stanton a decade prior to his death from AIDS in 1986. His most recent play, Kennedy V (commissioned by Resonance Ensemble) examines Teddy Kennedy’s transformation from idle playboy to the Lion of the U.S. Senate between the years 1963 and 1969. Roland is a New York Theatre Workshop Usual Suspect and Director of Membership for The Dramatists Guild of America.

Susan Westfall, City Theatre Co-Founder and Literary Director

2013 Summer Shorts Festival Playwright, Feel the Tango

Susi is a co-founder of City Theatre and its current Literary Director. Her plays have been produced in South Florida theatres including City Theatre, Actors Playhouse, New Theatre, Teatro Avante and the Coconut Grove Playhouse. Some of her plays include, Look At Me (Heideman Finalist, published in “Best Short Plays 2011”), Rats, The Boy From Russia, Uprising, The Wedding Party, Passing Through (Heideman Finalist), With the Patience of Angels (Heideman Finalist), 1962, You Are Here, and Voices at the Mary Elizabeth Hotel. Susan thanks master playwright Deb Laufer for the opportunity to write Feel The Tango where she is a member of the current Playwright Development Program, sponsored by the Miami-Dade County Department of Cultural Affairs. (Thanks Adriana Perez!) She is a past recipient of a Florida Arts Council Playwriting Fellowship, a Remy Award for Outstanding Contribution to Theatre by the Theatre League of South Florida, and a member of the Dramatists Guild of America, Theatre Communications Group and the Theatre League of South Florida. She is a native Miamian and lives with her family on Key Biscayne.

Sheri Wilner, 2013 Summer Shorts Festival Playwright, A Tall Order

CityWrights Presenting Artist, 2013

Sheri’s plays include How to Survive the Death of a Parent: A Comedy, Kingdom City, Father Joy, Hunger, Labor Day and Joan of Arkansas and have been performed at major regional and national theatres including the Guthrie Theater, Actors Theatre of Louisville’s Humana Festival, Williamstown Theatre Festival, Naked Angels, O’Neill Playwrights’ Conference and Primary Stages. Her one-acts have been published in over a dozen anthologies and by the online publishers Playscripts.com and Indie Theater Now, resulting in over two hundred productions of her plays all over the world. She recently completed a Visiting Assistant Professorship in Playwriting at Florida State University’s MFA Dramatic Writing Program, and has also taught playwriting for the Off-Broadway theatre companies Primary Stages and New Georges. She is thrilled once again to be a part of Summer Shorts, which produced her plays “Bake Off” and “Relative Strangers” in 2002. In 2012, her play A Tall Order was a City Theatre National Award for Short Playwriting Finalist. She lives in New York City.

Steve Yockey, 2013 Summer Shorts Festival Playwright, Serendipity

CityWrights Master Playwright, 2013

Steve is a Los Angeles-based writer with work produced throughout the US, Europe and Asia. Octopus, afterlife: a ghost story, Large Animal Games, Cartoon, subculture – collected short plays and Very Still & Hard to See are published and available from Samuel French. Wolves is currently receiving an National New Play Network rolling world premier at Actor’s Express (Atlanta), Southern Rep (New Orleans), Stray Cat (Phoenix), and Celebration (Los Angeles). Other plays include: Bellwether, Pluto, Heavier than…, and the recent EST/LA premier of The Fisherman’s Wife. Steve holds an MFA in Dramatic Writing from NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts (2008) and serves as an adjunct professor in the MFA Writing for Performance program at CalArts. He is the creator and co-executive producer of the Sony Pictures Television project Teeth and is currently adapting the Tama Janowitz novel Slaves of New York into a series for Sony/Wet Dog Entertainment/Killer Films. In addition to being a Summer Shorts Festival Playwright, Steve is also a Master Teacher for this year’s CityWrights Symposium for Playwrights.

Attending City Theatre Festival Playwright/Finalists:

Kendra Blevins, 2013 Summer Shorts Festival Playwright & Finalist, iZombie

City Theatre National Award Finalist, 2013

CityWrights Guest Artist, 2013

Kendra Blevins lives in Tulsa, Oklahoma where she is a freelance writer for Tulsa People Magazine, an Artist-in-Residence in Screenwriting for Tulsa Public Schools, Louder Than a Bomb Slam Poetry coach and the newspaper advisor of the Collegian, student newspaper at the University of Tulsa. Her creative pursuits include playwriting, screenwriting, journaling, soaking up wisdom, going to concerts, traveling and dating. iZombie is her first short play and was produced in 2010 as part of Heller Theatre’s Short Play Festival.

Holly Hepp-Galvan, 2013 Summer Shorts Festival Playwright & Finalist, Departure

City Theatre National Award Finalist, 2013

CityWrights Guest Artist, 2013

Holly is from New York City where she completed her MFA in Playwriting at Hunter College with Playwright-in-Residence, Tina Howe. While at Hunter, her play Departure won the Rita and Burton Goldberg Prize, and was named a finalist in the inaugural year of the City Theatre National Award for Short Playwriting contest. She is a founding member of Brass Tacks Theatre Collective in NYC. Other recent work includes Tamed, an adaptation of The Taming of the Shrew which opens at Pioneer Playhouse in Kentucky this June. In Texas her play Sprites, commissioned by Pollyanna Children’s Theatre and Ballet Austin, will premiere at the Long Center in January 2014, and her play Peter and the Piper willopen in May. As well as playwriting, Holly is a performer and teaching theatre artist. She was the 2012 Playwright-in-Residence for Voices Inside/Out, a playwriting program for male inmates at a medium-security prison. She’s also Adjunct Professor of Communication and Theatre Arts at Manhattan College and the College of Mount Saint Vincent.

Nina Mansfield, 2013 Summer Shorts Festival Playwright & Finalist, Bite Me

City Theatre National Award Finalist, 2013

CityWrights Guest Artist, 2013

Nina has had over sixty ten-minute and one-act play productions throughout the United States and in Canada, England, Australia and Ireland at a variety of venues and festivals including the New York International Fringe Festival, the Boston Theatre Marathon, Vital Theatre’s New Works Festival, 20% Theatre Twin Cities, the Six Women Playwriting Festival and multiple 8-Minute Madness Festivals in New York. Her plays are published by Smith & Kraus, Original Works Publishing, One Act Play Depot and YouthPLAYS. Her fiction has been published by Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine and Mysterical-E. Her young adult mystery novel Swimming Alone was a quarter-finalist in the 2010 Amazon Breakthrough Novel contest, and her full-length play Losing Our Heads: The Guillotine Play was a semi-finalist for the Eugene O’Neill Theater Center’s 2012 National Playwrights Conference. She is a member of the Dramatists Guild, the Mystery Writers of America, AEA and SAG-AFTRA.

Attending City Theatre 2013 National Playwriting Finalists:

Brad Beckman, Co-Author,Papeles

Brad Beckman has been either working as, studying or teaching acting, directing, dramaturgy and playwrighting for 25 years. He’s worked with groups and individuals ranging from Richard Schechner to the Rude Mechanicals. The last production he did in NYC was an adaptation of Dante’s Inferno that was part of the Mabou Mines Emerging Artist initiative at PS 122. He teaches Michael Chekhov Acting Technique and has lived in Miami for the last 6 years.

Alex Broun, 50 Guns

Now based in LA, Alex is one of the world’s leading experts in short plays, with no less than 90 ten minute plays produced across the globe in over 800 productions. Internationally Alex has had short plays produced in Australia, Canada, Chile, Estonia, France, Hungary, India, Ireland, Japan, Macedonia, Malaysia, New Zealand, Pakistan, Philippines, Poland, South Africa, Singapore, Taiwan, the UK and 40 different states of the USA. Recently he had a play published in Germany and a collection of short plays was translated into Persian and published in Iran. His longer plays have been performed at the Sydney Festival and he has twice received script development funding from the AFC. You can find many more of his plays free to download and perform at www.alexbroun.com.

Cricket Daniel, Break Dreams

Cricket Daniel lives in Bend, Oregon but hails from California. Cricket holds a theater degree from UC Santa Barbara and studied Shakespeare in Cambridge, England. Cricket has an extensive background in improv, stand-up, and theater. Cricket was a member of the national improv troupe Comedy Sportz and has performed stand-up at The Ice House, The Improv and has opened for Margaret Cho. Before becoming a stay-at-home mom, Cricket regularly performed in local community theatre productions. However, it was when she was an audience member one evening at a local production that she found her true calling. Cricket happened to be in the audience watching a play the same night as the playwright and ended up watching him more than the play. By the end of the evening she thought to herself “I wanna be that guy!” The next day she started writing her first play Couple Dating. That guy was playwright Michael Slade, whom she credits for sending her into a whole new and exciting direction. Cricket will also always be grateful to Jason Icenbice, who was the first producer who took a chance on a new and unknown playwright, which ultimately opened many theater doors. Cricket has since had her plays produced across the country. Her 10 minute play Break Dreams was selected for the 2012 Six Women Playwriting Festival. Crickets play Love, Laughter, and Lucci took home Best Production, Best Actress and Best Actor at the 2012 Golden Gravel Awards in Florida. Her 10 minute play Kentucky Chickens was part of the 24/SEVEN Theater Project in Colorado Springs. Cricket is a 2012 recipient of an Arts, Beautification, and Culture Award for her contribution to local theater. Cricket is a member of The Dramatist Guild of America. Cricket is happily married to her husband Jason of 18 years and has a 9 year-old daughter named Spencer. Cricket is currently working on her newest play Helen on Wheels and aspires to be a situation comedy writer.

Emily Dendinger, Everybody Hurts (Sometimes)

Emily Dendinger is a third year MFA candidate in playwriting in the University of Iowa’s Playwright’s Workshop. Her plays include Hideous Progeny, which has been produced by LiveWire Chicago Theater, Holland Productions, and North Park College, and Swimming After Dark, which won the 2005 KCACTF 1X2 One Act Playwriting Competition and 2008 Women Playwrights’ Initiative’s Playwriting Award. Her one-act play Family Tree was named the Senior Theater League of America’s Best Play 2004 and is currently published by Dramatic Publishing. Emily’s short plays have been produced around the country, including in the Boston Ten Minute Play Marathon and 20% Theatre’s Snapshots. She is a two-time winner of Theater Masters National Play Competition and a 2012 Heideman finalist. Her play Champagne Gods recently premiered as part of University of Iowa’s Gallery season.

Vanessa Garcia,Pawn

Vanessa Garcia is an multi-media and cross-genre artist, playwright, and journalist. She’s also the Founding Artistic Director of Krane, Inc — a theatre/arts company also known as The Krane (www.thekrane.com). She has won scholarships to the NY State Summer Writers Institute; a Vermont Studio Center fellowship; and received the Voices at the River Residency at the Arkansas Repertory Theatre in Little Rock. Her plays have shown in New York, Amsterdam, Edinburgh, Miami, and Los Angeles. Garcia earned a BA from Barnard College, Columbia University (summa cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa), and her MFA in creative writing (fiction) from the University of Miami, as a James Michener Fellow. She is currently a Schaeffer Fellow at the University of California Irvine, where she is a doctoral candidate in English. She has taught at Johns Hopkins University’s CTY program; the University of Miami; Miami Dade College; and numerous other institutions. Her CV can be found here:www.vanessagarcia.org/about.php. Garcia has also written and reported for various publications including The New York Times; The LA Times; The Huffington Post; The Miami Herald; HowlRound; The Southern Humanities Review; and The Art Basel Magazine, along with numerous other journals, magazines, newspapers, and online media. In 2010, she was named one of Miami’s 20 under 40 by The Miami Herald. That same year she was named one of Miami’s 100 Creatives by the Miami New Times. In 2008, she was one of four Literature Finalists, worldwide, in the Rolex Mentor & Protégé Arts Initiative. Through the Rolex initiative, she was able to cross paths with Nobel laureate, Wole Soyinka, who has, since then, called her work: “a tonic.” 

Garcia is also currently at work on various writing projects in theatre, fiction, and creative non-fiction.

Holli Harms, Make John Patrick Shanley Go Home

Holli Harms is a Sloan/EST Grant recipient commissioned to write a play about the Russian space program. She was a Dramatists Guild Fellow recipient 2009-2010. She was part of Southampton Writers Conference, invited with her play PALMETTO. PALMETTO was also an Ojai Playwrights finalist, and her play NAPLES, FL was a finalist with the Great Plains Theatre Festival as well as New York’s Summer Play Festival. Her one acts, COUGAR and MAKE JOHN PATRICK SHANLEY GO HOME have been part of the EATING Series of One Acts in Long Island City. Holli was co-founder of The Lexington Group – a group of writers/performers who co-wrote STEP IN AND STAND CLEAR (winner Backstage Critics Award). The group’s ensemble show THE BALLAD OF LARRY THE FLYER was invited to both the New York Fringe Festival and Piccolo Spoleto festival in Charleston, SC and winner at both for ensemble. Her one act ZIPLOC was produced in Santa Monica, CA at the Edgemar Center for the Arts. She has been a judge for the Bronx Arts Council Playwrighting Awards and is a member of Ensemble Studio Theatre and the Dramatists Guild, and is writer and performer with Monologues and Madness series at NYC’s Cornelia Street Café.

Peter Kennedy, Disconnections

Peter Kennedy is a middle school teacher and writer in Williamsburg, Massachusetts.   He was also a weekly newspaper columnist for five years in upstate New York before moving to New England and returning to playwriting after a long hiatus. Disconnections, his first short play, was chosen as a winner of this year’s Pick of the Vine national ten-minute play competition sponsored by Little Fish Theatre in Los Angeles, and it was produced there for a fifteen night run of short plays in January and February of 2013. In addition, in 2012, Disconnections was produced as one of the winners in Moments of Play, a national ten-minute play competition sponsored by Salem Theatre Company in Massachusetts, and it was selected as a finalist for the Actors Theatre of Louisville Heideman Award. Peter’s recently completed full-length play, Dig, is a dark comedy inspired by his experiences with archaeological and Native American communities of the Southwest desert.

John Minigan, It’s the Jews

John Minigan was named “Best Playwright of 2011” in the 8-Minute Madness Festival in New York City and was the winner of the Firehouse Theater New Works Contest in 2010 and 2012 and the KNOCK International Short Play Competition in 2010. His plays have been produced in New York City by the Circle Repertory Company, Turtle Shell Productions, Quaigh Theatre, Gran Mal Theatre and Shelter West and by theaters throughout the country and in the United Kingdom. He has been playwright-in-residence developing new work with the Orlando Shakespeare Theater and the Utah Shakespearean Festival’s New American Playwrights Project. His scripts have won the Playwright’s Collaborative Award and been selected for the Samuel French Best of Off-Off Broadway Festival and the Boston Theater Marathon. When not writing, John teaches theater, Shakespeare and writing in the Boston area, where he lives with his wife, dance scholar and choreographer Lynn Frederiksen. He is a member of the Dramatists Guild.

Hector Pino, Co-Author Papeles

Born in Havana, Cuba, raised in Madrid, Spain, and still growing in Miami, Florida, Hector Pino has worn just about every hat from journalist to copywriter. While pursuing his master’s degree at the University of Miami, he already became interested in scriptwriting. This eventually yielded his first play, “The Virgin of Little Havana,” a social satire about the Cuban American experience in Miami. Premiering in 2009, it served as a springboard for many other projects, some already successes, others still in progress — much like himself.

Mary Sansone, Wrigleys

Mary has always been fascinated in the written word. Becoming lost in a world created with words has been the source of some of her greatest adventures and stands amidst the best teachers she’s ever known. Learning to see the world through the eyes of others is a lesson in the lost art of empathy that regrettably, too many seem to have forgotten. Such a compelling source of inspiration for the world has motivated her to endeavor passing along messages she believes discourage the major source of the world’s worst problems: the widespread apathetic indifference toward the rest of humanity. Theatre is another excellent way to foster empathy, and she has been involved in numerous aspects of theatre including acting in 6 shows at Barry including Three Sisters, Big Love, Twelfth Night, The Rimers of Eldritch, and outside productions such as the role of Veronica in City Theatre’s World Premiere of Camp Kappawanna. She has also written, produced, and acted in her original one act entitled “Open Window to Greatness” in 2008 (directed) 2009 (acted in). She hopes that the CityWrights workshop will be a wonderful tool to exercise her writing skills and learn valuable knowledge from those in the writing field.

Bara Swain, Hotel Lobbyist

Bara’s plays and monologues have been performed in 100 venues across the country. Recent: The Hotel Lobbyist ($1000 prize, 2013 Method and Madness Playwriting Competition, Denton, TX); In Fine Print (Jewish Women’s Theatre, LA); 48 and Rachel Holds Court, FAB Unframed at Barrow Group (NYC); Give And Take, Paw-Paw Players (MI) and in: Best 10-minute Plays 2013 (Smith & Kraus); Beyond a Reasonable Doubt, in: Best 10-Minute Plays 2012 (Smith & Kraus); Forget-Me-Not, eTens, Original Works Publishing; How Could You, Art Age Press; Aboard the Guy V. Molinari, Ego Actus Productions, Theatre 54, NYC (Heideman Award finalist); Responsible (New Moon Reading Series, Luna Stage, NJ), and by special invitation from Burt Reynolds, An Evening With Bara Swain, Jupiter, Florida, directed by Burt Reynolds. Film: Prized Begonias, 1st Place, Fort Lauderdale International Film Festival 2012; Critical Care, Palm Beach International Film Festival 2013; and Safety Pin, in: Before and After, Project Y, Access Theatre (NYC). Bara serves as Development Associate & Playwriting Outreach Coordinator, Abingdon Theatre Company, NYC (www.abingdontheatre.org). Through Abingdon’s Benefit Challenge Series, she co-produced staged readings of more than 130 new 10-minute plays. Bara is a teaching artist for underserved New Yorkers, Quinnipiac University, and other programs.

Sheri Wilner

Sheri Wilner plays incude How to Survive the Death of a Parent: A Comedy, Kingdom City, Father Joy, Hunger, Labor Day and Joan of Arkansas and have been performed at major regional and national theatres including the Guthrie Theater, Actors Theatre of Louisville’s Humana Festival, Williamstown Theatre Festival, Naked Angels, O’Neill Playwrights’ Conference and Primary Stages. Her one-acts have been published in over a dozen anthologies and by the online publishers Playscripts.com and Indie Theater Now, resulting in over two hundred productions of her plays all over the world. She recently completed a Visiting Assistant Professorship in Playwriting at Florida State University’s MFA Dramatic Writing Program, and has also taught playwriting for the Off-Broadway theatre companies Primary Stages and New Georges. She is thrilled once again to be a part of Summer Shorts, which produced her plays Bake Off and Relative Strangers in 2002. She lives in New York City.

Deborah Yarchun

Deborah Yarchun is a New Jersey-born, Air Force-raised and Austin-rooted playwright; her plays are just as geographically discombobulated. Her plays have been developed at The New Harmony Project (upcoming), Jewish Plays Project’s OPEN Residency (upcoming), The Great Plains Theater Conference, Rattlestick Playwrights Theatre, Sanctuary Playwrights Theater, and WordBRIDGE, and produced at Theater Master’s National MFA Playwrights Festival, Estrogenius Festival, the Philadelphia Fringe Festival, The Samuel French Off Off Broadway Festival, Playwrights Horizons by Young Playwrights Inc., and at theaters and universities across the United States and in Canada. Deborah’s honors include a 2013-2014 Jerome Fellowship at the Playwrights’ Center, the Kennedy Center’s Jean Kennedy Smith Playwriting Award, University of Iowa’s Richard Maibaum Playwriting Award, and the Iowa Arts Fellowship. She has also been a finalist for the Heideman Award. M.F.A, University of Iowa, 2013.