Emma Swain

Emma Swain

Emma Swain (she/her) is a playwright currently based in Minneapolis, MN, and originally from Grayslake, IL. She speaks both German and English and holds a B.A. in Music Theatre and English from Carthage College, where she got her start in playwriting with a staged reading of her first one-act, SECOND DRAFTS. Professionally, Emma's work has appeared in numerous readings and workshops across the USA,...
Emma Swain (she/her) is a playwright currently based in Minneapolis, MN, and originally from Grayslake, IL. She speaks both German and English and holds a B.A. in Music Theatre and English from Carthage College, where she got her start in playwriting with a staged reading of her first one-act, SECOND DRAFTS. Professionally, Emma's work has appeared in numerous readings and workshops across the USA, including New Match Collective in San Diego, CA (WIRE TAPS), Orlando Repertory Theater (CINDERELLA: THE REAL STORY with John Maclay, Rayven Cece Craft, and Austin Nelson), Long Island University in New York City, NY (TEQUILA SUNRISE) and the Region III Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival (WIRE TAPS), where she was also awarded the Region III John Cauble Short Play Award in January 2020. She has also been published in Smith & Kraus' 2021 "Best Women's Monologues" anthology. Other plays include LEAVE A LIGHT ON, WHAT WE HAVE NOW (OR, VALENTINE'S-F**ING-DAY), STARDUST, and VOICES OF VOW (A VERBATIM THEATRE PROJECT). In-development plays include THE VACATION (a play about being a woman in post-Roe America), THE PAPIER-BLUMEN MEADOW (a German-English play for young audiences), TWO WRENS (a dystopian play), and TO ELINOR, WITH LOVE (a poetic queer love story). Emma will also be joining the Playwrights' Center as an Artistic and Administrative Apprentice for their 2022-2023 season.

RECENT NEWS:
- I DIDN'T THINK IT WOULD LOOK LIKE THIS will be produced by Long Island University's Post Theatre Company in their 2021 New Play Festival. Performances will be December 3-5, 2021 at LIU in Brookville, New York.
- LEAVE A LIGHT ON will appear as a short film in Spark Creative Works' "Women's Film Festival" in November 2021 in New York City.
- CINDERELLA: THE REAL STORY has been licensed and published by Theatrical Rights Worldwide, slated for press in late 2021.
- "Ellen's Monologue" from WHAT WE HAVE NOW will appear in Smith & Kraus's annual "Best Women's Monologues" anthology, publication scheduled for October 2021.

Plays

  • Cinderella: The Real Story
    Written by Rayven Craft, John Maclay, Austin Nelson, and Emma Swain. Licensed through Theatrical Rights Worldwide.

    A new take on an old classic, this play tells the forgotten stories hidden in the fairy tale we all know so well. Funny, imaginative, and powerful, this play is specifically designed to be performed by young performers in a TYA setting and may be adapted to a virtual or in-person performance venue.
  • tequila sunrise
    near dawn on an old city bus. the sunrise is imminent.
    only college students, early-morning commuters, and people without ordinary sleep schedules are awake.
    carolyn and jodie are friends and maybe more.
    lalya is drunk.
    tequila and secrets don't mix well.
    and growing up is hard.
  • Leave a Light On
    A 15-Minute Play. Four people discover their links to one another are about to be severed by the spread of a mysterious illness that makes those infected gradually forget everything. They work to preserve what they treasure about humanity before it all slips away. 
  • Quiet Girls
    Two women in an office separated by a few feet of threadbare carpet and a generational divide of fifty years must learn to find their common ground when the world around them suddenly feels more volatile than the coffee maker in the break room.
  • Second Drafts
    Belle, Amos, and Alice have all moved on from the losses they’ve suffered over the years— but somehow, they haven’t quite managed to let go. Told through a series of vignettes, this play weaves together three different love stories to explore how love and loss intertwine, how the past exists in the present, and how sometimes the things we miss the most are right in front of us.
  • What We Have Now (or, Valentine's-f**king-Day)
    With Valentine’s Day peeking ominously over the horizon, Mallory, Shannon, Mark, and Ellen are just trying to distract themselves from their lives -- and their woefully tangled relationships -- as well as they can. But in the early morning hours of February 13th, someone they all know is rushed to the hospital -- and their tightly wound facades all start to unravel. On Valentine's Day, they all find...
    With Valentine’s Day peeking ominously over the horizon, Mallory, Shannon, Mark, and Ellen are just trying to distract themselves from their lives -- and their woefully tangled relationships -- as well as they can. But in the early morning hours of February 13th, someone they all know is rushed to the hospital -- and their tightly wound facades all start to unravel. On Valentine's Day, they all find themselves at the hospital together, tightly holding together their lives and looking for something -- or someone -- to cling to.
  • Wire Taps
    Told by nine non-binary, nameless characters, WIRE TAPS weaves together several stories about coming out, mental health, and what it means to be growing up queer in a rapidly changing world. WIRE TAPS is told entirely through telephone calls, voicemails, and text messages.

    A school edition is also available by individual inquiry.

  • Voices of VOW: A Verbatim Theatre Project
    Voices of VOW was edited, compiled, and arranged by Emma Swain with assistance from Martin McClendon from interviews conducted in 2019 by Martin McClendon. It is a verbatim play that tells the stories of four United States military veterans and their lives after their service. Battling mental illness, homelessness, family rejection, injury, disability, and many other obstacles, these veterans all eventually...
    Voices of VOW was edited, compiled, and arranged by Emma Swain with assistance from Martin McClendon from interviews conducted in 2019 by Martin McClendon. It is a verbatim play that tells the stories of four United States military veterans and their lives after their service. Battling mental illness, homelessness, family rejection, injury, disability, and many other obstacles, these veterans all eventually found their way to the the James A. Peterson Veteran’s Village in Racine, WI, where they now live and work as members of the Village's community. It is through cooperation with the Village that we are able to tell their stories.
  • Stardust
    Cassiopeia is a girl named after the stars who likes other girls and thinks her Grandpa doesn't know.
    Grandpa is a janitor at a planetarium who is dying and thinks Cassie doesn't know.
    This could be a sad story, but Cassie's decided that it's not.