The Return of the One-Minute Play Festival

It’s a New Year, and that means one thing: It’s time to make resolutions that will get broken before the week is out. Well, there’s one other thing it means, as well: The annual Boston One-Minute Play Festival will soon be underway.

I have been involved with the Boston OMPF since its first production in 2012, but I managed to miss the past couple of years. Now I’m excited to be part of it, for the first time since 2015. The festival will consist of two batches of plays, one to be performed on Saturday, January 6, and Sunday, January 7, and the other to be performed on Monday, January 8, and Tuesday, January 9. I have two plays in the festival this year, both of which are in the Saturday/Sunday batch: “The Wrong Way,” directed by Lindsay Eagle, and “I [   ] You,” directed by Kelly Smith.

The OMPF is great fun, and the plays can be very funny and sometimes surprisingly poignant. Hope to see you there!

Ticket information 

The 7th Annual Boston One-Minute Play Festival
Boston Playwrights’ Theatre
949 Commonwealth Ave.
Boston, MA 02215
January 6 – 9, 2018

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Försvinnandet on tour in Sweden

Earlier this month, Vinita and I had the supreme pleasure of visiting Sweden as a guest of the Riksteatern, the company that is sending Försvinnandet (also known as Absence) on tour through the country. We were able to see the final dress rehearsal before the tour commenced, and then we attended the opening performance in the small but lively town of Surahammar.

Cast and crew of Försvinnandet
Me with the cast and crew of Försvinnandet

The show (a revival of a production presented by Dalateatern earlier this year) was a vibrant and powerful Swedish-ized version of the play, as translated by Eleanora De Loughery Nordin and directed by Åsa Ekberg. Eleanora and Åsa are also part of the richly talented cast led by Maria Selbing in a powerful and moving performance as Ellen.

While we were thrilled to see the production, Vinita and I were most impressed by the generosity and warmth of everyone we met, from the cast and crew of the show to the Riksteatern administrators to the citizens of Surahammar. Everywhere we went, we were treated as honored guests. We were particularly impressed by the work of the Riksteatern, which produces dozens of shows, large and small, every year, and sends them out on tours through the cities and towns of Sweden.

Försvinnandet  continues on tour through November 23rd. A complete schedule can be found here.

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Absence Revivals in Scandinavia

The Scandinavians, it seems, cannot get enough of Absence (this is the part of the Försvinnandet Posterworld that gave us Ibsen and Strindberg, so they do their depressing plays). The play is getting revivals of its productions in both Norway and Sweden this year.

As Fravær, the play opened in at the Oslo Teater Nye in Oslo (where else?) in September of 2015. The play had a successful run, with great crowds and positive reviews, and the theater is now, two years later, producing it again with mostly the same cast, including Marit Østbye reprising her wonderful, Hedda Award-nominated performance as Helen. The revival opened on August 23 (which is my birthday, just sayin’) and will run through September 22. Click here to order tickets.

In Sweden, the play (known as Försvinnandet) was produced by Dalateatern in Falun this past winter/spring (from February through April). This fall, it goes on tour through the country sponsored by the Riksteatern, starting with a performance in Surahammar on October 2 (I plan to be present that evening) through November 23. Click here to get a full schedule and to order tickets.

I’m humbled and honored (and actually a bit giddy) to have the play come back to Norway and Sweden. It’s a real sign that Helen’s situation is one that we all face eventually, whether through family, friends, or our own selves.

Oslo Nye Trikkestallen
Oslo, Norway
August 23 – September 22

Many towns, Sweden
October 2 – November 23

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Absence in Greensburg, PA for One Night Only

On Wednesday, April 26, there will be a one-night-only presentation of Absence  at the Palace Theatre in Greensburg, PA, presented by the Newhaven Court at Linwood, an assisted living facility. The production is directed by Michael Anton, and feature Linda Stayer as Helen Bastion.

All proceeds from the show will be donated to the Alzheimer’s Association.

Here is a link to a press release about the production, including an interview with the director.

The play starts at 7:00 PM at the Palace Theater. Tickets may be purchased here, or by calling the box office at 724-836-8000.

Palace Theatre
21 W. Otterman St
Greensburg, PA 15601.
April 26, 2017

Update: Before the show went up, I was interviewed by Shirley McMarlin of the Greensburg Tribune-Review for an article about the production.


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Photos from the European productions of Absence

Försvinnandet Photo 3
Maria Selbing, Eleanora DeLoughery Nordin, and Susanne Hellström in the Swedish production of Absence (Försvinnandet)

The productions of Absence in Sweden and Italy are now history. I had hoped to attend, but due to health issues (my back chose the wrong moment to misbehave) I had to stay stateside. The Swedish production will be revived this fall, however, and go on a tour through several cities.

In the meantime, there are some lovely pictures available of both productions in my galleries.

Försvinnandet (Swedish)

Assenze (Italian)

I’m grateful to Dalateatern and Teatro Campogalliani to bringing Absence to new audiences in new languages.

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Absence Returns to Europe

In the fall of 2015, Absence crossed the briny Atlantic and made its European debut (as Fravær) at the Oslo Teater Trikkestallen in Norway.

I’m pleased to announce that the play, a first-person chronicle of one woman’s harrowing experience with dementia, will be returning to that side of the world with two productions going up in February 2017.

The first of these will be put on by Dalateatern, a theater company based in Falun, Sweden.  Under the name Försvinnandetand translated by Eleanora DeLoughery Nordin, it will be directed by Åsa Edberg and open on Saturday, February 11. After a three-weekend run in Falun, it will be taken on tour throughout Sweden over the spring.

A week after the Falun opening, the play will come to Mantua, in Italy, courtesy of the Teatro Campogalliani. There, it will be called Assenzewith a translation by Antonia Brancati, and directed by Mario Zolin. It will run from February 19 through March 26.

Falun (and elsewhere), Sweden
February 11 – April 5

Teatro Campogalliani
Mantua, Italy
February 19 – March 26

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Return of the Naughty Readings

In the fall of 2006, when I was but a fledgeling playwright, my short play “Big Eddie” appeared as part of the Image Theater‘s second annual Naughty Readings in Lowell. And what are the Naughty Readings? [I hear you asking.] These are a set of staged readings of short comic plays that deal with matters of sex, interspersed with hilarious and off-color songs. No, it’s not Oh, Calcutta; there’s no nudity, and honestly not much that you wouldn’t hear in a Netflix show. But you probably wouldn’t want to bring your kids.

I’m happy to report that ten years later, both Image Theater and the Naughty Readings are going strong. And I’ll be back in them this year, with my never-before-performed play “Michael Isn’t Yours.”  The readings will be at the Old Court Irish Pub on Saturday, November 12 (yes, one night only). Please come, and leave your pruderies at the door.

Tickets available here

The Naughty Readings 2016
Old Court Irish Pub
 29-31 Central St
Lowell, MA 01852
November 12, 2016

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Writers at Play Showcase 2016

WAP 2016_2Writers at Play:

2016 Showcase of New Work

Monday, July 11, 7:30pm. FREE

Boston Playwright’s Theatre

My playwriting group, Writers at Play, will be having its second annual showcase of new works on Monday, July 11, at the Boston Playwrights’ Theatre. We will presenting scenes for the plays we have been working on over the past year, read by professional actors (who have been reading the pieces as they’ve progressed). Please join us for an evening of brand-new, cutting-edge theater!

After by Peter M. Floyd: One of the few remaining people in a post-apocalyptic world, Parker is convinced that there is a conspiracy afoot among the leaders of the community of survivors. Is she right or is she crazy? How about both?

Shaken by Deirdre Girard: Beth’s been living under an assumed name in rural Vermont, finally finding peace and maybe even love, after fleeing Boston eight years earlier in the wake of her imminent arrest for a horrific crime. But when her sister Jasmine unexpectedly shows up armed with a law degree and breakthrough medical research, the two women begin a journey that explores the nature of truth and justice in a biased world — a journey that will change their relationship forever.

The Travellers by Colleen M. Hughes: Bri is seventeen and desperate for adventure. Her wish seems to be coming true when she meets the Traveller, a mysterious woman who can travel through time. But who is the Traveller, and why does she seem to care if Bri patches up her relationship with her mom? A play about the past, present, and future, what happens when you try to change them — and what happens when time starts to fight back.

The Comfort Kills by Michael Towers: Music has always been Brendan’s salvation but with the death of his father, he is unable to write — a condition which puts additional stress on his marriage. Performing in a local dive bar, Brendan meets an unlikely muse who inspires his music and his healing but drives a wedge between him and his wife.

The Kitchen and the Volcano by John Zakrosky, Jr.: A sister and brother may only have one last phone call together before a volcano erupts, destroying their family’s past.

Monday, July 11 at 7:30 PM
Boston Playwrights’ Theatre
949 Commonwealth Ave., Boston

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Boston Marathon 2016

May means Mother’s Day, and Mother’s Day means the Boston Theater Marathon: ten solid hours of ten-minute plays, performed at the Boston Center for the Arts. That’s Sunday, May 8, from noon to 10:00 PM at the Boston Center for the Arts. Of course you should go, and take your Mom!

I’ve already written a post about the glories of the BTM, so this time I’ll be succinct: my brand-new play “Evolution” — never before performed — will be in this year’s Marathon, produced by Imaginary Beasts, directed by Matthew Woods, and featuring the acting talent of Joey Pelletier, Joy Campbell, and Noah Simes. The play features a group of creatures who have decided that it’s time to move up the evolutionary latter. But which direction should they go? Bigger, faster, or smarter?

There are plenty of other talented playwrights in the mix, including Stephen Faria, John J King, Ray Arsenault, Patrick Gabridge, Christopher Lockheardt, Ellen Davis Sutherland, Brandon Crose, Rick Park, and Ronan Noone. The complete schedule is here. You can show up for just an hour or two, or prove your stamina by watching the whole thing. (“Evolution” runs in the 8:00 – 9:00 slot, so you’ll want to plan accordingly.)

Tickets may be purchased here.

Boston Theater Marathon XVIII
Boston Center for the Arts
539 Tremont St.
Boston, MA 02116
May 8, 2016

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Absence on the Cape

Absence_ButtonAbsence returns to New England with a production this May at the Cotuit Center of the Arts out on Cape Cod. Directed by Robert Brock, the show runs in the Center’s Black Box Theater from Thursday, May 5, through Sunday, May 22. I will be on hand on opening night for a post-show talkback, which will be followed by a reception. So, come and join us!

Helen Bastion is 74 years old, but age has not taken its toll on this matriarch’s will or her need to control her family, from her compliant husband David to her resentful daughter Barb. But when she begins to suffer lapses of memory, her steely facade begins to crumble. As words lose their meaning and reality fragments, Helen’s own sense of self starts to dissolve. Is she truly disappearing, or is she becoming something greater, as the mysterious, mocking figure known as Dr. Bright promises her? Helen struggles desperately to find meaning in an existence that is slowly and inexorably becoming a void.

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Written by Peter M. Floyd
Directed by Robert Bock

Helen: Elizabeth Liuzzi
David: R. Michael Wresinski
Barb: Bonnie Fairbanks
Samantha: Madison Oakley
Dr. Delane & Ms. Moss: Stacey Locascio
Dr. Bright: Marcus Liuzzi

Cotuit Center for the Arts
4404 Falmouth Rd
Cotuit MA 02635
May 5 – 22, 2016

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