MAGIC IN ROUGH SPACES 2020 NEW PLAY LAB
June 27th and 28th, 2020
Four new pieces developed by Rorschach Artists are coming straight to your living room! Join Rorschach Theatre for three online readings of brand new works plus a “bonus track” by acclaimed playwright Heather Ruth McDonald. Each reading will include a short presentation from a designer about a theoretical design for the show and a post-show discussion with the playwright, director, and performers.
THINGS I CAN HEAR ON A TUESDAY FROM MY BACK PORCH IN BALTIMORE DURING LA QUARANTINA by Heather McDonald
Saturday 6/27 @ 7pm: CLICK HERE to watch it LIVE
WHEN THE STARS GO OUT by Stephen Spotswood
Saturday 6/27 @ 8pm: CLICK HERE to watch it LIVE
MERCURY by Kate Attwell
Sunday 6/28 @ 2pm: CLICK HERE to watch it LIVE
DESIRE PATH by Jason Grote
Sunday 6/28 @ 7pm: CLICK HERE to watch it LIVE
The readings are free but consider supporting the artists by making a contribution to Rorschach Theatre here.
MAGIC IN ROUGH SPACES is sponsored in part by Anonymous (3), Lisa Carr, Scott Chew, Erik Harrison, Aaron Heinsman, John Kopec, Gosia Marmurowicz & Piotr Bakowski, Diane & Tim McConnell, and Rex Robison.
“Somewhere out there. In the dark. There’s a wolf. This terrible beast. I can hear him. Can you hear him? He’s so hungry. He’s swallowing the stars, one by one.”
Astrophysicist, atheist, and uber-geek Naomi is just weeks away from the birth of her first child. The baby’s father, still floating unaware in outer space, may not make it back in time…or at all. Straddling the line between high science and modern myth, this play explores what it means to face the end of the world as you know it.
FEATURING Omar Cruz, Lee Liebeskind, Bianca Lipford, Jonathan Del Palmer, Megan Reichelt, and Sue Schaffel
DRAMATURGY by Medha Marsten
DESIGN DRAMATURGY by Debra Kim Sivigny
“What if, what if death wasn’t like,
A psychological thriller, a horror,
That’s what I’m saying
What if it really is just,
Just people still being here. And not being here.
But absolutely not not being here.”
A high school boy is dead. His friends find a haven in the girls’ bathroom. As the weeks go by, their dark explorations inch ever closer to the thin veil between this world and the next. Where do the dead go and who goes with them?
FEATURING Becca Berlind, Tori Boutin, Jake Gee, Donnie McElveen, Madison Middleton, and Shirite Westreich.
DRAMATURGY by Jonelle Walker
DESIGN DRAMATURGY by Katie McCreary
“I don’t think there’s a name for it. But I think it’s —
A radical form of empathy. The most radical I can think of.
We’re literally dying from our inability to empathize.”
A woman nurses a goat to save the earth, as her boyfriend navigates a complex relationship with his terminally ill stepfather. An infinite cornfield has settled in her Brooklyn apartment. Together they search for connection in a broken world. A surreal and emotionally grounded story that looks at a society teetering on the brink of extinction and asks: what is to be done?
DESIRE PATH is sponsored by Michael Halpern and Glenda Turner
FEATURING Ian Armstrong, Sara Barker, Robin Covington, Sarah Taurchini, and Robert Pike.
DRAMATURGY by Olivia Haller
DESIGN DRAMATURGY by Nate Sinnott
“everyone stops / even the birds
waiting to hear / what house / what home”
Playwright Heather Ruth McDonald is quarantined in Baltimore… and she is listening. Her story of this moment unfolds in less than 5 minutes. Rorschach will invite a dozen actors to explore this piece of text, each in their own way. The resulting digital short will serve as its own Rorschach test–what does the world look like today from your back porch?
FEATURING Wyckham Avery, Sara Barker, Tori Boutin, Kylos Brannon, Frank Britton, Rizal Iwan, Lee Liebeskind, Donnie McElveen, Jonathan Del Palmer, Susan Rome, Dina Soltan, Christian Sullivan, and Al Twanmo.
STEPHEN SPOTSWOOD is an award-winning playwright, journalist, educator, and soon-to-be novelist. His previously produced works include: Girl in the Red Corner (winner of the 2017 Helen Hayes Award for best new play); Doublewide (an NNPN rolling world premiere); In The Forest, She Grew Fangs; We Tiresias; Sisters of Ellery Hollow; and others. He is an alumnus of The Welders playwrights’ collective. His novel, Fortune Favors the Dead, debuts in October 2020 from Doubleday.
KATE ATTWELL is a playwright, TV writer, and devised theater maker. She is an MTC/Sloan, Ensemble Studio Theatre, WRAPT Films, and Playwrights Horizons commissioned writer, and was a member of Ars Nova’s PlayGroup, Page 73’s writers’ group, a Mabou Mines Resident Artist and a member of the Public Theater’s Devised Theater Working Group. Recently her plays have been developed at Playwrights Horizons, A.C.T., Portland Center Stage, New York Theatre Workshop, and The Bushwick Starr. Previous work has been seen at: REDCAT / Roy and Edna Disney/CalArts Theater (LA), The Public Theater (Under the Radar, 2016), JACK Arts, La MaMa E.T.C., Movement Research at Judson Church, BRIC, the Brooklyn Academy of Music (Everybooty), The Segal Center (Festival of Performance & Film), and The Wassaic Project. Her play Testmatch premiered last season directed by Pam McKinnon at A.C.T. in San Francisco, and will play at the Yale Repertory Theatre directed by Margot Bordelon, and at Bath Theatre Royal produced by the English Touring Theatre, directed by Nicole Charles, later this year. She holds a BA in Performance from The University of Bristol in the UK and an MFA from Yale.
JASON GROTE is a California based writer whose plays include 1001, Civilization (all you can eat), Maria/Stuart, and Desire Path. Devised theatre includes En Garde Arts’ Basetrack, David Levine’s HABIT (2013 OBIE), and Radiohole’s Tarzana. Film and TV include “Mad Men,” “Hannibal,” and “Smash,” and a feature film adaptation of John Cheever’s “Goodbye, My Brother.” Honors include the P73 Playwriting Fellowship and a WGA Award Nomination. He is currently writing on a AAA video game for Take Two Interactive.
HEATHER MCDONALD‘s plays include Masterpieces of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity, An Almost Holy Picture, When Grace Comes In, Dream of a Common Language, Available Light, The Rivers and Ravines, Faulkner’s Bicycle, The Two Marys, Rain and Darkness and the upcoming The Suppressed–Desire Ball (developed at Sundance – Ucross Writers Retreat). Her work has been produced on Broadway (starring Kevin Bacon) and Off Broadway and at such theatres as The Roundabout Theatre, Arena Stage, Signature Theatre, The McCarter Theatre, Center Stage, Berkeley Repertory Theatre, Seattle Repertory Theatre, Indiana Rep, California Shakespeare Theatre, Round House Theatre, Signature Theatre, Yale Repertory Theatre, The Actors Theatre of Louisville – Humana Festival of New Plays, The La Jolla Playhouse and internationally in Italy, Spain, Portugal, England and Mexico.
Her work has been honored with a nomination for the Pulitzer Prize, three NEA Playwriting Fellowships, The First Prize Kesselring Award and was a finalist for the Susan Smith Blackburn Prize. Her plays are published by Dramatists Play Service, Samuel French, Inc. and in several collections. She has written and sold two screenplays and is developing a new project for television. She received her MFA from NYU Tisch School of the Arts and is Writer-in-Residence and Professor of Theater and Film at George Mason University.