Recommended by Dave Osmundsen

  • A Godawful Small Affair
    9 Dec. 2020
    I listened to a Zoom reading of this play. This is an incredibly delicate, deceptively simple piece that took me back to the beginning months of the pandemic, when quarantine threw off our perception of time (which St. James captures beautifully). The use of increasingly loud sirens was especially haunting and effective, reminding the audience of how on fire the world was (literally and figuratively) while we were stuck inside. Also, points to St. James for normalizing non-monogamy in relationships, and for not making a slip-up a massive plot point that calls a relationship into question.
  • en-DANGER!-ed
    13 Nov. 2020
    A big, bold, hilarious, messy (in the best way possible), panoramic epic about a disparate group of animals and humans dealing with a rapidly changing world. Corwin's gift for clever, witty comedy and razor-sharp satire is on full display here--but it masks a deeper, much darker undercurrent. The ending is truly one of the most horrifying conclusions I've ever read. This is that rare play that ACTUALLY makes you laugh one minute, then terrifies you the next. If you care about the environment (or, you know, humanity) on ANY level, PLEASE read this play!
  • Just A Rumor
    27 Sep. 2020
    Who called whom first? Where did they die? What happened at this meeting? Speculation abounds in this witty and touching dark comedy. Laugh-out-loud dialogue is well-matched with the deeper themes that DeVita and Lyons are exploring here, such as love, grief, and legacy. The piece also explores how rumors and contradictions of a person's life become a part of their legacy until they take on a mythic proportion, becoming Hollywood lore in the process.
    13 Sep. 2020
    In this short play, Carnes recontextualizes and reframes one of the most disturbing hauntings in American history. With her reliably fierce command of language and theatricality, Carnes examines the even more horrifying reality behind the mythology, giving voice to those who have not been heard in the telling of this story.
  • Data
    8 Sep. 2020
    A tautly written and thought-provoking play about the difficult intersection between technological “innovation” and its impact on society as a whole. Libby writes sharp dialogue and sympathetic characters who are trying to keep a hold of their moral compass as the work they were hired to do becomes increasingly questionable. The plot is beautifully structured too, revealing just enough information to keep the audience involved as the story progresses. A fantastic play that is well worth a read!
  • For Leonora, or, Companions
    30 Aug. 2020
    A bittersweet story about two lonely young women on the autism spectrum who find a common ground over the Oz books (both those written by Baum and not). Like the best of the fantasy genre, this play fuses real world emotion with a world that is fantastical and beguiling. Despite the whimsy, there is a palpable sense of melancholy as the play explores growing up and being left behind. A gorgeously written, whimsical, and charming story that is both intimate in its simplicity and epic in its theatricality. I cannot wait to see this play produced!
  • Drain
    25 Aug. 2020
    A horrifying speculative political thriller that humanizes those who are unjustly pursued and demonized by an authoritative figure. The final moments are bone-chilling and disturbing. Well done, Scott!
  • Wad
    22 Aug. 2020
    A darkly humorous, playfully theatrical, and unpredictable play about our capabilities of lying and listening to each other. Nyce and Jim develop an unusual bond throughout the piece, and playwright Keiko Green smartly dolls out information in a way that both develops them and stays ahead of the audience. I also appreciated how this play takes on death row (the execution process explanation with the puppets is hilarious, too). As someone who appreciates crime dramas that humanize those involved, I look forward to seeing where this piece goes!
  • Persephone
    22 Aug. 2020
    SUCH a beautiful play that is emotionally resonant and theatrical. The final moments are stunning.
    16 Aug. 2020
    I love how this play bucks the idea that standardized testing can place any worth on a person. Mariah is an incredibly smart young person whose intelligence isn't served by the system that purports to help her. I also love how Teri gradually breaks down her walls to see Mariah for the person she really is, and what she ultimately wants to accomplish. Sympathetic and funny, "The Future" humanizes those behind the standardized testing that has unfortunately become a dominant part of our education system. Two great roles for actresses to boot!