Diversionary Theatre’s 3rd Annual Spark Festival

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  • June 13-15, 2019, Spark will present four one-night-only readings of fascinating contemporary works never before seen in San Diego by exceptional playwrights. Talkbacks, a Playwriting Master Class, and receptions give you the opportunity to mingle and celebrate with actors, directors, and playwrights throughout the weekend. Creative sparks will be flying!

    TICKETS:
    All readings are free to the public. There is a suggested donation of $15 at the door. Reserve tickets online or by calling 619-220-0097.

  • About the Plays

    The Gentleman Caller
    By Philip Dawkins
    Directed by Meg DeBoard
    Thursday, June 13 @ 7pm
    Black Box Theatre

    Before becoming queer icons of the American theatre, Tennessee Williams and William Inge were just two aspiring playwrights sharing a night together. As the liquor flows and confessions begin to spill out, they reveal truths about themselves the public never saw. Based on real-life but closed-door encounters, reconstructed from troves of comments (and elisions) by each man about their relationship, Philip Dawkins gorgeously envisions what might have taken place during those early-career meetings.


    A Kind of Weather
    by Sylvan Oswald
    Directed by Bea Basso
    Friday, June 14 @ 7pm
    Black Box Theatre

    When Kid’s grieving father pops up at his Brooklyn doorstep and asks to move in, it kinda puts a cramp in his sex life. Not to mention the completion of his memoir about his gender transition. As he struggles to keep his professional and romantic deadlines, revelations about his family history begin to subvert his own narrative. A hilarious, time-jumping, tragi-comedy exploring gender identity and its effect on family, A Kind of Weather is about learning to be who you already are.


    Not Another Sidney Poitier
    by Michael Rishawn
    Directed by Lamar Perry
    Saturday, June 15 @ 3pm
    Mainstage

    This innovative new work is a film inside a play, and follows the ascension of two best friends who rise to fame, despite one being a woman, one being gay, and both being black. But can their ideals and friendship rise with them?  This scintillating, resonant story is an unflinching look into the Hollywood film industry, revealing the true cost of playing the game.


    F**k La Vie D’Artiste
    by Georgette Kelly (Ballast, 2017 Craig Noel Award for Outstanding New Play)
    Directed by Heidi Handelsman
    Saturday, June 15 @ 7pm
    Black Box Theatre

    Zenab, an aspiring French-Moroccan painter stuck giving tours of the room where Vincent Van Gogh died. When Vincent’s ghost begins to speak to her, she finds herself torn between her art and Avery, the American woman she’s falling in love with. After race riots break out near Paris, Zenab grabs her easel and joins the fray to paint her own version of France, begging the question: What does it mean when your own country sees you as an outsider?

  • Philip Dawkins is a Chicago playwright and educator whose plays have been performed all over the world. His plays include Failure: A Love Story (Victory Gardens Theater), Le Switch (About Face Theatre, The Jungle), The Homosexuals (About Face Theater), The Burn (Steppenwolf for Young Audiences), Dr.Seuss’s The Sneetches, the Musical with composer David Mallamud (Children’s Theater Company, Minneapolis) and The Gentleman Caller (Raven Theatre, Chicago; Abingdon Theatre, NY). He received the Joseph Jefferson Award for Best New Work for his plays Charm (Northlight Theatre; MCC) and Miss Marx: Or The Involuntary Side Effect of Living (Strawdog Theatre), as well as the Joseph Jefferson Award for Best Solo Performance for his play, The Happiest Place on Earth (Sideshow Theatre/Greenhouse Theater Center, Diversionary Theatre). Philip has been a resident at the Hawthornden Castle International Retreat for Writers in Scotland and the MacDowell Colony in New Hampshire. Philip currently teaches playwriting at his alma mater, Loyola University Chicago. Many of his plays, including his scripts for young performers, are available through Dramatists Play Service, Playscripts, Inc. and Dramatic Publishing.  

    Georgette Kelly is a playwright with one foot in Chicago and the other in New York.  Her work has been produced across the country, and she has participated in numerous artistic residencies, including the 2018-2019 Goodman Playwrights Unit. Her play I Carry Your Heart received the inaugural Hope on Stage Playwriting Award, accompanied by a rolling world premiere, and Ballast was featured on The Kilroys List and received the Craig Noel Award for Outstanding New Play.  Georgette’s work has been developed with The Kennedy Center, The National New Play Network, The DC Source Festival, The Alliance Theatre, Diversionary Theatre, and Chicago’s DCASE.  She is a resident playwright at Chicago Dramatists, a member of the Dramatists Guild of America, and she has participated in residencies at the Tofte Lake Center, the National Winter Playwrights Retreat, and terraNOVA Groundbreakers Playwrights Group. Georgette holds a B.A. in Performance Studies from Northwestern University and an M.F.A. in Playwriting from Hunter College, where she studied with Tina Howe, Arthur Kopit, and Mark Bly.

    Sylvan Oswald is an interdisciplinary artist originally from Philadelphia who creates plays, texts, publications, and video. His work uses metatheatricality and formal irreverence to explore the ways we construct our identities. Current projects include the theatrical essay Trainers and the performance text High Winds, based on the book of the same name he co-authored with graphic designer Jessica Fleischmann, now out from X Artists’ Books. Sylvan’s lo-fi semi-improvised web series Outtakes starring Becca Blackwell and Zuzanna Szadkowski is hosted at weareopentv.com. His plays and collaborations include A Kind of Weather (CTG, Playwrights Horizons/Clubbed Thumb Superlab), Sun Ra (Joe’s Pub, Jerome Travel and Study Grant, Soho Rep Writer-Director Lab), Profanity (Undermain Theater, Dallas; Six Points Fellowship, Soho Rep Dorothy Strelsin Fellowship), Nightlands (New Georges, Full Stage Commission from New Dramatists), Pony (About Face Theater, Chicago), and Vendetta Chrome (Clubbed Thumb). Honors include a 2019 Guggenheim Fellowship, a Rosati Fellowship from Duke University Libraries, the Thom Thomas award from The Dramatists Guild, a Jerome Fellowship, and residencies at Sundance/Ucross, Macdowell Colony, and Yaddo. He is a member of CTG’s Writers’ Workshop, an affiliated artist at Clubbed Thumb and an alum of New Dramatists.

    Michael Rishawn is an third-year MFA (UCSD) actor and playwright. New York Credits: Old Masters (The Flea), 24-hour plays (The New School), History Boys (Gallery Players), workshops at Roundabout Theatre Company. Regional: Wig Out (Studio Theatre), Much Ado About Nothing, Two Gentleman of Verona, All’s Well (Shakespeare Theatre Company), A Christmas Carol, Antony & Cleopatra (Hartford Stage), Henry V (Philadelphia Shakespeare). Sundance Screenwriters’ Lab Finalist (Mama’s Boy), Bay Area Playwrights Festival Finalist (Not Another Sidney Poitier). BFA, The Hartt School.

  • MASTER CLASS with Georgette Kelly

    Saturday, June 15 @ 11am
    Black Box
    $25

    Visual Playwriting Using imagery as a starting point.

    Join award-winning playwright Georgette Kelly to learn how to use imagery and visual art to jump start your next play or enhance your current play in development.

    Georgette Kelly is a playwright with one foot in Chicago and the other in New York.  Her work has been produced across the country, and she has participated in numerous artistic residencies, including the 2018-2019 Goodman Playwrights Unit. Her play I CARRY YOUR HEART received the inaugural Hope on Stage Playwriting Award, accompanied by a rolling world premiere, and BALLAST was featured on The Kilroys List and received the Craig Noel Award for Outstanding New Play.  Georgette’s work has been developed with The Kennedy Center, The National New Play Network, The DC Source Festival, The Alliance Theatre, Diversionary Theatre, and Chicago’s DCASE. She is a resident playwright at Chicago Dramatists, a member of the Dramatists Guild of America, and she has participated in residencies at the Tofte Lake Center, the National Winter Playwrights Retreat, and terraNOVA Groundbreakers Playwrights Group. Georgette holds a B.A. in Performance Studies from Northwestern University and an M.F.A. in Playwriting from Hunter College, where she studied with Tina Howe, Arthur Kopit, and Mark Bly.

  • Spark Schedule

    Thursday, June 13 @ 7pm

    The Gentleman Caller
    By Philip Dawkins

    Black Box Theatre
    Friday, June 14th @6pm

    Spark Mix & Mingle Reception with the Playwrights
    a complimentary event with hosted wine and appetizers

    Fritz Lounge
    Friday, June 14 @ 7pm

    A Kind of Weather
    by Sylvan Oswald

    Black Box Theatre
    Saturday, June 15 @ 11am

    Master Class
    With Georgette Kelly

    Black Box Theatre
    Saturday, June 15 @ 3pm

    Not Another Sidney Poitier
    by Michael Rishawn

    Mainstage
    Saturday, June 15 @ 7pm

    Fuck La Vie D’Artiste
    by Georgette Kelly (Ballast, 2017 Craig Noel Award for Outstanding New Play)

    Black Box Theatre

    Tickets are available at www.diversionary.org or by calling the Box Office at 619-220-0097. Tickets are available at www.diversionary.org or by calling the Box Office at 619-220-0097.

     

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