Ryan Bernsten

Ryan Bernsten

Ryan received his Master's in Dramatic Writing from the University of Oxford, where he graduated with honors. Onstage, ATLANTIC — a collaboration with the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland and his alma mater Northwestern University — won critical acclaim at Edinburgh Fringe and DREAM TICKET (Players Theatre, off-Broadway) won the NY Fringe Excellence Award and was recommended by The Huffington Post and...
Ryan received his Master's in Dramatic Writing from the University of Oxford, where he graduated with honors. Onstage, ATLANTIC — a collaboration with the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland and his alma mater Northwestern University — won critical acclaim at Edinburgh Fringe and DREAM TICKET (Players Theatre, off-Broadway) won the NY Fringe Excellence Award and was recommended by The Huffington Post and TimeOut. Other credits include WE ARE BLOOD (Kansas City Public Theatre; Ashland New Play Festival, Semifinalist; Austin Film Festival, Semifinalist), THE NEW ORDER (Corkscrew Theatre Festival; Oxford University Dramatic Society Best Play for Voices; The Living Room Theatre’s Horror Play Festival), NOVEL (Charlotte Street Foundation, Kansas City Scratch Night), and BAD PRESS (Cherry Lane Theatre). Ryan’s podcast 50 States of Mind was part of Spotify’s New Podcast Incubation Program and won the Kings Hall Grant. His upcoming book 50 STATES OF MIND: A JOURNEY TO REDISCOVER AMERICAN DEMOCRACY will be published in February of 2023 by Bite-Sized Books in the U.K. Ryan is also a Slytherin contestant on the quiz show HARRY POTTER: TOURNAMENT OF HOUSES hosted by Helen Mirren on TBS, Cartoon Network, and HBOMax. Ryan is currently the Senior Managing Editor at The Trevor Project, overseeing editorial strategy to end suicide among LGBTQ young people.

Plays

  • We Are Blood
    Is family forever? In this horror/thriller, a recently widowed New Yorker and her son return to rural Missouri to evict her estranged sister from their childhood home. Discovering the house in disrepair and the inhabitants experimenting with occult magic, the family is forced to exorcise demons from their past.

    Development/Award History:
    CoverFly RedList - #1 Horror Stage Play, (2022)...
    Is family forever? In this horror/thriller, a recently widowed New Yorker and her son return to rural Missouri to evict her estranged sister from their childhood home. Discovering the house in disrepair and the inhabitants experimenting with occult magic, the family is forced to exorcise demons from their past.

    Development/Award History:
    CoverFly RedList - #1 Horror Stage Play, (2022)
    Kansas City Public Theatre (Theatre Lab, 2021)
    Northwestern University (Reading, 2020)
    Ashland New Play Festival (Semifinalist, 2022)
    Austin Film Festival (Semifinalist, 2020)
    Rave Theatre Festival (Finalist, 2020)
    Kansas City Script Circle (2020)
    University of Oxford (Workshop, 2019)

    With original dramaturgy by Hunter Nelson.
  • Novel
    Two ambitious writers mine their trauma to create a masterpiece in a writing program helmed by a horror novelist, only to make a terrifying discovery about the program's endgame.
  • The New Order
    In a post-apocalyptic world, a mother and daughter take in survivors to help rebuild their farm. All is well until an other-worldly order of nomadic nuns arrives seeking shelter and start imposing their strange doctrine on the household.
  • Dream Ticket
    In this political satire recommended by TimeOut NY, Huffington Post, and The Producer’s Perspective, populist businesswoman Becky Roberts and maverick senator Les Sugarman compete for their party's presidential nomination—despite a history that wasn't strictly political. When media pressure forces them to run on the same team, their dream ticket becomes a nightmare.
  • Bad Press
    In this political satire, a former U.S. President recruits a national joke to run in the Democratic primary, hoping to sabotage her bland husband's competition and ensure victory. However, the media's hunger for drama has unintended consequences as the power couple attempts to harness the bad press for their own ends.
  • What Happened at Jimmy Carter's Funeral
    At Jimmy Carter's funeral, a terrorist attack forces all of the former Presidents and First Ladies into a secure location with the people who cause them the most misery. In light of the catastrophe and (aided by wine) each of the Presidents is confronted with their legacy and mortality in this political comedy about death, joy, and how hell is not only other people, but our own choices.