Alyssa Cokinis

Alyssa Cokinis

Alyssa Cokinis (she/they) is an American theatre artist from Iowa, currently residing in the Pacific Northwest. MA: Intercultural Communication Studies (Shanghai Theatre Academy). BAs: Theatre Arts and English (University of Iowa). Alyssa's plays have been produced or read at Atlanta Fringe Audio, Oregon Fringe Festival, New Plays of the Heartland Festival (Bloomington-Normal, IL), MadLab Theatre (Columbus...
Alyssa Cokinis (she/they) is an American theatre artist from Iowa, currently residing in the Pacific Northwest. MA: Intercultural Communication Studies (Shanghai Theatre Academy). BAs: Theatre Arts and English (University of Iowa). Alyssa's plays have been produced or read at Atlanta Fringe Audio, Oregon Fringe Festival, New Plays of the Heartland Festival (Bloomington-Normal, IL), MadLab Theatre (Columbus, OH), the University of Iowa, and elsewhere. Her short plays have been published in fifth wheel press, The Minison Project, Chaotic Merge Magazine, and elsewhere. Alyssa is the founder/editor-in-chief of some scripts literary magazine, a magazine dedicated to the literary merit of plays, screenplays, and other dramatic form pieces (www.some-scripts.com). She is also the editor and one of the contributors for the anthology Monologues by LGBTQIA+ Writers for LGBTQIA+ Actors, available now: bit.ly/queer-monologues-print

Plays

  • Happy Pills
    After nuclear attacks on U.S. cities, happiness and other emotions can no longer be produced naturally by humans; their brain chemistry has been severely altered due to nuclear fallout. The Integrated Borders Union, a new government near former Washington, D.C., works with local drug designers and manufacturers to produce chemically-created emotions; these pills are part of the mandatory Pill Program for all...
    After nuclear attacks on U.S. cities, happiness and other emotions can no longer be produced naturally by humans; their brain chemistry has been severely altered due to nuclear fallout. The Integrated Borders Union, a new government near former Washington, D.C., works with local drug designers and manufacturers to produce chemically-created emotions; these pills are part of the mandatory Pill Program for all citizens residing in the IBU. To those unlucky enough to be wandering the wasteland, they must survive the terrain and hungry groups of hunters.

    We go back and forth in time between young drug addict Fern’s present, in which she resides in the Integrated Borders Union one year after the fallout, trying to get back to her old life with her boyfriend Jon and her mother and follow the rules of the Pill Program; and Fern’s past, or what happened to her on the road a few months directly after the fallout, where she meets and deals with both withdrawal and her feelings for the mysterious traveler Kerouac after the two were chased by a group of hungry fallout survivors.

    **A radio play adaptation is also available upon request.
  • The Lark and the Nightingale
    by Mindy Mawhirter and Alyssa Cokinis
    adapted from the works of William Shakespeare

    The Lark and the Nightingale is a queer retelling of William Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet and Othello. Juliet and Desdemona, two characters canonically destined for tragic endings, break away from their scripts and attempt to find happiness in each other. Desdemona battles duty with love while Juliet...
    by Mindy Mawhirter and Alyssa Cokinis
    adapted from the works of William Shakespeare

    The Lark and the Nightingale is a queer retelling of William Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet and Othello. Juliet and Desdemona, two characters canonically destined for tragic endings, break away from their scripts and attempt to find happiness in each other. Desdemona battles duty with love while Juliet struggles to let love consume her entirely. When confronted with their scripted ends, they must advocate for one another and prove that their love is worth fighting for.
  • Expat-ations
    Two American expat English teachers in China butt heads in their new friendship, further exacerbated by an incident that leaves them stuck in understanding how rape culture operates in America vs in China.
    Content Warning: discussion about sexual assault and rape culture
  • Terraform
    (10-minute) On a terraformed Mars, two coworkers wait to watch a large asteroid hit Earth and argue about the ethics of living on Mars.
  • Red
    (5-10 minutes) A queer reimagining of Little Red Riding Hood and how society defines “womanhood.”
    Content warning: misgendering, transphobia
  • Brave Little Girl Scout
    A response to the shooting at an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas.

    Written for Code Red Playwrights
  • Twenty-Three Years Later
    A response to the shooting in Boulder, Colorado on March 22, 2021.

    Written for Code Red Playwrights.
  • Savior
    An amnesiac girl named Lana wakes up on an empty ship captained by the mysterious Sal, who pulled her out of the water. As Lana integrates herself into the ship's routine, little pieces of her memory return as she begins to question who Sal is, why they have a ship, and where their ship is ultimately heading.
  • Daughter of Deception
    Artemis is missing. At least, that was what Zeus told Kat Elpida. Kat’s mother, the Deceiver—also known as Apate, from Pandora’s box—is on a mission to harness the power of the gods and eliminate the Olympians forever. As Kat encounters gods and goddesses alike, she, the god Apollo, and demigod Revi must rush to find Artemis before the Deceiver does. From the Forest of Artemis to the Fields of Asphodel,...
    Artemis is missing. At least, that was what Zeus told Kat Elpida. Kat’s mother, the Deceiver—also known as Apate, from Pandora’s box—is on a mission to harness the power of the gods and eliminate the Olympians forever. As Kat encounters gods and goddesses alike, she, the god Apollo, and demigod Revi must rush to find Artemis before the Deceiver does. From the Forest of Artemis to the Fields of Asphodel, sometimes what comes out of Pandora’s box is best left inside.
  • I Love China/我爱中国
    Inspired by Meng Jinghui and others' "I Love XXX" -- Semi-autobiographical, semi-not, "I Love China" is a one-woman show which explores a young white American woman's experience as a foreign teacher and resident in the People's Republic of China (pre-COVID-19). This piece is still in development and will be expanded to speak to the COVID-19 era as well.
  • Taken by the Sky
    Taylor is the sole survivor of a plane crash, and she doesn't want to talk about it. She trades university for working at a shoe store, her long-time best friend for stoner Jules and high schooler Camille, and her family for the comfort of weed. And while nothing is wrong with any of that, Taylor finds that the memories of that plane crash aren't going away--in fact, they seem to be chasing her.
  • In Memory Of
    **CURRENTLY WRITING** After the COVID-19 pandemic ripped apart the United States economy—among other things—the government decreed memories to serve as the new currency. This was in the hopes that people would do away with the memories of the Trump presidency, the billionaires, the pandemic, climate change, and more. This was in order to boost the economy, bring the country back together, and re-inspire...
    **CURRENTLY WRITING** After the COVID-19 pandemic ripped apart the United States economy—among other things—the government decreed memories to serve as the new currency. This was in the hopes that people would do away with the memories of the Trump presidency, the billionaires, the pandemic, climate change, and more. This was in order to boost the economy, bring the country back together, and re-inspire Americans to pursue their dreams. But sooner or later, one runs out of memories, or one isn’t always willing to let go of the bad or insignificant. Need a box of diapers? A few memories, please. Have to get a car wash? That’ll be ten small memories, please, like the color of your baby’s first pair of shoes or the guy your best friend had a crush on in middle school. Want a cup of coffee? One strong memory, please.

    Vale is an auditioning actor, waiting for their big break, recently having moved back to the U.S. after teaching in China. They live with their roommate Dom, who is also queer. However, Vale begins slipping on paying memories for things like packages and rent, and Dom grows more and more frustrated with what he perceives to be Vale’s laziness and inconsideration. When Vale talks to her Indian friend Kandala via Skype, Kandala expresses her anger and hurt that Vale gave up memories of their trips and time together in India and China just to pay for things in the States.

    Vale also meets Laurel, an activist, but Laurel has more on her mind than simple white-picket-fence protests, and Vale is unsure of whether to join in her cause or not. When Dom kicks Vale out, Laurel offers Vale the opportunity to stay temporarily at the headquarters of the Organization to Abolish Forgetfulness (OAF). What quickly was temporary turns into a high-stakes heist to return memories to the masses. With this, in addition to the gain and loss of memory, Vale navigates a world where just because a solution was offered doesn’t mean it was the right one.