Steve Fogelman

Steve Fogelman

The most surprising fact about Steve Fogelman, who is not only a playwright, actor, singer, and also an accomplished painter, chef, designer and filmmaker is that he is a late- diagnosis Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). This life-long struggle unaware of the spectrum not only afforded him strong visual and cognitive skills but also laid the groundwork for story and character conflicts, though propagating the...
The most surprising fact about Steve Fogelman, who is not only a playwright, actor, singer, and also an accomplished painter, chef, designer and filmmaker is that he is a late- diagnosis Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). This life-long struggle unaware of the spectrum not only afforded him strong visual and cognitive skills but also laid the groundwork for story and character conflicts, though propagating the relationships to exploit his talents and opportunities remained elusive.

Lucid visualizations and complex problem solving are a hallmark ASD characteristic so Steve was naturally drawn to first developed his 3-D visual skills, receiving a bachelor’s degree in architecture in 1985 from Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, where he also took playwriting classes in their famed drama department. An exchange year in Lausanne, Switzerland benefited him becoming fluent in French.
For a year after graduation he studied at George Romero’s Pittsburgh Filmmakers before moving to Los Angeles to work as a film art director. On the coast, Steve quickly decided to commit to acting, spending three years studying at The Lee Strasberg Theatre Institute, which was also helpful in understanding relationships in the ‘real world.’ There, he performed in a workshop production of his first full-length "Hey, Picasso!" which developed into the musical "Bluegrass Requiem."

Though several companies also performed his first short play "The Hoodoo," he missed the writing on the wall to become a playwright and hurled himself further into filmmaking, studying screenwriting at Writer’s Boot Camp with founder Jeff Gordon, where he wrote several feature films, including "My Guy," "Lunch With the Devil" and "The First Gentleman." As a member of Filmmakers Alliance, he wrote, produced and directed several shorts, most notably "Limbo", which screened at the Tiburon, Asheville and New Orleans film festivals.
Now back focusing on theater in New York since the spring of 2012, Steve has taken opportunities to hone his writing skills with director Sam Gold and noted playwrights Will Eno, Annie Baker, Josh Harmon and Gary Garrison, with his fellow Carnegie Mellon alum, Rachel Abrams, being invaluable as dramaturg. His short plays "Breeders Cup" and "Genius" were staged through Love Creek Productions. A first draft of "Subscription" was read as part of 2014 Chelsea Rep Festival. "tran-si-tions" was a semi finalist for the 2014 Vittum Prize for best new play and 2016 Great Gay Play and Musical Festival, both in Chicago. His short, "The Glove," was selected as part of Equity Library Theater’s 2017 Playwrights Festival and was published by Art Age Publications the same year.

Plays

  • charrette
    Set in 1985, ‘charrette’ is a coming of age story following five senior architecture students punished with 24 hours over Spring Break to design a city facilitating human interdependence or risk not graduating on time, jeopardizing their futures.

    While the story starts as a clash of egos, it escalates to a frenzy fueled by a hidden love pentagon of pining, trysts, latent sexuality and...
    Set in 1985, ‘charrette’ is a coming of age story following five senior architecture students punished with 24 hours over Spring Break to design a city facilitating human interdependence or risk not graduating on time, jeopardizing their futures.

    While the story starts as a clash of egos, it escalates to a frenzy fueled by a hidden love pentagon of pining, trysts, latent sexuality and unrequited love where revelations unravel to near-tragic consequences as they grow out of codependent children into inter-dependent adults allowing the woman drowning in a man’s world to find empowerment.
  • tran-si-tions
    Modern culture causes us to disenfranchise ourselves from the ultimate reality of our mortality casting fear and darkness on how we actually live our lives. Hospice care has grown out of this darkness in the past two decades as a common end-of-life treatment to return a dignity to this universal final process.

    Set in New York at Christmas, this story is a modern star-crossed...
    Modern culture causes us to disenfranchise ourselves from the ultimate reality of our mortality casting fear and darkness on how we actually live our lives. Hospice care has grown out of this darkness in the past two decades as a common end-of-life treatment to return a dignity to this universal final process.

    Set in New York at Christmas, this story is a modern star-crossed lovers fable following Ernie, a spiritually gifted gay death doula-in-training, whose first required vigil is a comatose homeless man in the final stages of AIDS. This man wants to come back to life to experience true love and Ernie’s gift helps him miraculously awake. Though he’s fantasizing he's married to Latin singer Ricky Martin, Ernie struggles to maintain a professional relationship with this man named Kiel, who turns out to be a lonely homeless male prostitute. While the two men bond over military service and shared teenage strife, they fall in love, as the staff and Kiel's awaiting angel father prepare Kiel for the end and struggle to keep the friendship professional.

    Their 24-hour relationship allows Kiel to experience true love while finding forgiveness for his life’s circumstances, and Ernie to allow himself to love again after the recent loss of his partner. However; Ernie’s inability to maintain professional boundaries jeopardizes his calling to assist the dying, before the inevitable end.

  • Subscription: A Pretty Dramatic Composition on Sexual Evolution
    "..an appealingly original, sensitive examination of a man's evolving sexual identity..."
    Sarah Lunnie
    Literary Director
    Playwrights Horizon

    One may subscribe to magazines, cable TV or a season of theater. But one can also subscribe to arcane beliefs of marriage, society and sexuality that at some point in modern life no longer serve a purpose and become...
    "..an appealingly original, sensitive examination of a man's evolving sexual identity..."
    Sarah Lunnie
    Literary Director
    Playwrights Horizon

    One may subscribe to magazines, cable TV or a season of theater. But one can also subscribe to arcane beliefs of marriage, society and sexuality that at some point in modern life no longer serve a purpose and become impossible to maintain. Hence, a reason for the mid-life crisis, wanting to feel vital, and live with meaning. But in this third millennium, a couple seeking their evolving self still trapped in societal constraints, has become complex as the person’s true identity emerges, and the couple looses original ties that bound them, years after making vows.
    Musical theater enthusiasts Tory and Hope Lovett's crumbling lives collide with their estranged neighboring subscribers over a season of touring Broadway musicals, where Tory, inching towards 40, is finally willing to embrace his repressed self brought out watching a musical number, though his wife is desperate to save the marriage. Denial is no longer an option, as their lives reemerge in a new paradigm struggling to balance needs, vows, and dreams, through a voyeuristic view of cultural evolution.
    Theater at its best influences the way we think and feel about our own lives and encourages us to take a hard look at ourselves, our values, and our behavior, however musical theater tends to offer a more idealistic view of life in sweeping spectacles, dramas are intimate and focused. Subscription creates a structural hybrid with characters inspired by musical theater’s simple archetypes, juxtaposed in a focused dramatic setting to heighten the characters’ stifling existence, with all ironically tied up with a musical finale.
  • Leg of Lam
    Apotemnophilia is a real disorder where those suffering want to remove one or more of their limbs in order to feel whole (see Appendix A). For many years the cause was not clearly defined as emotional, physiological or chemical with no known pharmacological aids to reduce symptoms, and was thought to have a sexual component, hence the ‘phila’ at the end. More recently, research points to a neurological root,...
    Apotemnophilia is a real disorder where those suffering want to remove one or more of their limbs in order to feel whole (see Appendix A). For many years the cause was not clearly defined as emotional, physiological or chemical with no known pharmacological aids to reduce symptoms, and was thought to have a sexual component, hence the ‘phila’ at the end. More recently, research points to a neurological root, but the disorder - without a cure - remains.

    This play of Afghan war vet, Lamar Delgado, who needs his father, Oscar’s, help to remove his leg, is more than a surface story of a man suffering with a disorder, but intended as a timely mythical allegory of every human’s quest to eliminate the negative effect of past personal traumas and generations of familial dysfunctions to be the true expression of their soul’s intention.

    Oscar arrives at the Colorado cabin in a blizzard and has the difficult task to be supportive with a hidden agenda to prevent Lamar from going through with the amputation. Using religious arguments, Oscar ultimately fails to stop Lamar from attempting to remove the leg and even convinces him he has nothing to be ashamed of for his condition. As Lamar is about to shoot off his leg, the gun doesn't fire, as Oscar had removed the bullets when testing the gun. A deeper argument ensues with household knives and Lamar eventually throws himself on one held by Oscar and dies. Oscar prays to Jesus for forgiveness and Lamar takes a breath in the final moment.
  • Interview
    Recent college grad, Valerie Albright, wants a job to assist treasured Broadway writer, Norm Richards, whose flailing reputation requires a dramaturg to revive his career, although his irrational needs make hiring anyone almost impossible. Valerie is determined as she wants more than a job, but also the opportunity to reestablish a relationship with her estranged grandfather.
  • Cabhan Flynn
    Set in New York City in 1910 and told in reverse chronology, the story starts with Cabhan Flynn asking his deceased brother, Durbid's girlfriend, Teresa, out on a date after the funeral. Followed by Cabhan arriving at Teresa’s to tell her Durbid fell from the Woolworth building and died and to believe he did all he could to save him, ending with the brothers working together high on the iron structure...
    Set in New York City in 1910 and told in reverse chronology, the story starts with Cabhan Flynn asking his deceased brother, Durbid's girlfriend, Teresa, out on a date after the funeral. Followed by Cabhan arriving at Teresa’s to tell her Durbid fell from the Woolworth building and died and to believe he did all he could to save him, ending with the brothers working together high on the iron structure arguing over Durbid's announcement to marry Teresa, before Durbid falls and the jealous Cabhan just watches.
  • Love + War
    A reimagining of the mythical romance of Achilles and Troilus where their earlier pederasty effects their affections. But will Troilus get Achilles to prove his love by consummating the relationship before heading off to war?
  • The Glove
    When active grandparents, Howard and Roz, are rushing out of the house to their grandchild’s third birthday party, a gender-specific gift not fitting the party’s ‘princess’ theme, rattles their fears of prejudice and lost expectations, in response to the chid’s recent trans diagnosis.
  • Breeders Cup
    Biotechnology gives a new slant to modern sibling rivalry when Dawn Hodges’ plan to use birthing babies to successfully compete with her over-achieving Lesbian twin sister for the longed-for adoration of her bigoted father, is jeopardized by artificial insemination. Dawn desperately wants to get pregnant by her over-worked husband, Ray, to secure her lead, but is further infuriated into getting pregnant at all...
    Biotechnology gives a new slant to modern sibling rivalry when Dawn Hodges’ plan to use birthing babies to successfully compete with her over-achieving Lesbian twin sister for the longed-for adoration of her bigoted father, is jeopardized by artificial insemination. Dawn desperately wants to get pregnant by her over-worked husband, Ray, to secure her lead, but is further infuriated into getting pregnant at all cost when Ray reveals he’s shooting blanks.
  • A Dozen Mondays
    After a few months of weekly passionate sex, JD is ready to end this affair, but Tony wants to take it to the next level, and can’t see how his already having a boyfriend is a problem.

  • Handsome
    It always seems to be in the news about how the media and advertisers create unattainable levels of beauty for women to live up to. But the same circumstance exists for men although the issue is not in the headlines. Proof is the rise of ‘metrosexual,’ and ‘manscaping’ since the turn of the 21st century as men strive for a higher level of attractiveness for self and peer acceptance.

    This play...
    It always seems to be in the news about how the media and advertisers create unattainable levels of beauty for women to live up to. But the same circumstance exists for men although the issue is not in the headlines. Proof is the rise of ‘metrosexual,’ and ‘manscaping’ since the turn of the 21st century as men strive for a higher level of attractiveness for self and peer acceptance.

    This play opens the door to that discussion when a man is invited to join The Handsome Club, and the effect that has on the future of his marriage.
  • Genius
    A tragic-comedy of two arrogant graffiti artists looking to make a rise in popularity with a first all-city piece, decrying pop culture. Though they have ineptly executed their plan and run out of paint. With a street reputation at stake, a hunt for more paint at 3AM leads the boys struggle to quickly solve their dilemma, yet maintain their political objectives. Desperation for fame leads to heightened...
    A tragic-comedy of two arrogant graffiti artists looking to make a rise in popularity with a first all-city piece, decrying pop culture. Though they have ineptly executed their plan and run out of paint. With a street reputation at stake, a hunt for more paint at 3AM leads the boys struggle to quickly solve their dilemma, yet maintain their political objectives. Desperation for fame leads to heightened ineptitude and a tragic completion to the piece.

  • The Hoodoo
    Hoo-doo: n. a run of bad luck associated with a person or activity:
    (Oxford Dictionary)

    What might be the last day for Hal, turns out to be day one of a brighter new life for Libby and her family without him.