Benjamin Fainstein

Benjamin Fainstein

Benjamin is a playwright and theatre maker currently based in Portland, Oregon, where he serves as the literary manager and resident dramaturg for Portland Center Stage at The Armory and JAW: A Playwrights Festival.

He is a 2018 Lambda Literary Fellow and will workshop a new project, a fantastical satire adapted from Aristophanes, at their Retreat for Emerging LGBTQ Voices in August.
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Benjamin is a playwright and theatre maker currently based in Portland, Oregon, where he serves as the literary manager and resident dramaturg for Portland Center Stage at The Armory and JAW: A Playwrights Festival.

He is a 2018 Lambda Literary Fellow and will workshop a new project, a fantastical satire adapted from Aristophanes, at their Retreat for Emerging LGBTQ Voices in August.

Benjamin's plays and performance texts have been seen on their feet in Boston, New Haven, New York, and Washington, D.C.; titles include Carnival/Invisible, Iphigenia Among the Stars, Prototype 373-G, The Body Politic, and Paradise Sets In.

Ben is currently developing new work for Portland Center Stage with playwrights Lauren Yee, Mary Kathryn Nagle, Dan O'Brien, and James Beaton, as well as a devised commission created specifically for Portland audiences by an ensemble of Portland artists. Complete dramaturgy and directing experience available on request.

Benjamin's previous posts include Artistic Coordinator & Literary Associate, Yale Repertory Theatre; Managing Editor, Theatre Magazine; Associate Artistic Director, Yale Cabaret; Founding Artistic Director, Whistler in the Dark Theatre. He is a graduate of Middlebury College and Yale School of Drama who originally hails from Houston, Texas.

Plays

  • Carnival/Invisible
    A lively riff on traveling tent shows, Chautauquas, and variety circus entertainments. CARNIVAL/INVISIBLE ushers in a ragtag troupe of Americana-prone performers to your town, along with their charismatic leadership, who may or may not have a more sinister agenda underfoot. Benjamin encourages all producing teams to devise/compose a physical and sonic life for the piece that best fits their ensemble and to...
    A lively riff on traveling tent shows, Chautauquas, and variety circus entertainments. CARNIVAL/INVISIBLE ushers in a ragtag troupe of Americana-prone performers to your town, along with their charismatic leadership, who may or may not have a more sinister agenda underfoot. Benjamin encourages all producing teams to devise/compose a physical and sonic life for the piece that best fits their ensemble and to collaborate with him on tailoring sequences for each new space and iteration of this theatrical event.

Recommended by Benjamin Fainstein

  • Hiccups
    17 Aug. 2018
    I've had the pleasure of seeing Ben Rosenblatt read/perform this piece in an informal, no-tech setting, and even without design elements or a full audience, it sang. The text carves out theatrical territory living somewhere between intimate autobiography and a zoomed-out perspective providing informative and tender glimpses at the struggles and successes of people living with OCD. Rosenblatt presents heady clinical material in a wonderfully human way, and his play offers exciting opportunities to enact direct audience engagement, open dialogues about mental healthcare, and spend time in brains that may operate differently than our own--pure and personal theatre-making.