Week of 12/5: This Week in Feminist Theater

marsha norman

Leela’s Femprov Fest 2015

Here’s a call to action by Leela Improv: “Leela presents the second annual Femprov Fest April 30th-May 3rd, 2015. We are looking for sponsorship for this all women’s improv festival. If interested in providing support (financial donations, goods and services) please contact femprovfest@gmail.com.

Stay tuned for dates on submitting your improv & sketch groups. We are also looking for solo performers as FemmeC’s, workshop instructors, and speakers for a panel discussion.”

Pulitzer-Winning Playwright Marsha Norman on New Play Development

Here’s an insightful interview with Marsha Norman, who herself is a Pulitzer and a Tony winner. In her interview with The Interval, she says: “‘I’ve become an activist, which was kind of a surprise to me. I thought it was going to be enough that I do it [write, succeed]; that my example would be enough. It’s not. I think that’s an important thing for women to realize—your modeling is good, but it’s not enough'”.

Her commentary on the lack of gender equality in theater is one of the main take away points on New Play Development. She emphasizes the fact that as women, leading by example is great but not enough, and we must continue to develop upon a sounding board to address the issues that come with an absence of gender parity.

Women Hired Off-Broadway 2010-2014

“The League of Professional Theatre Women (LPTW), as part of an initiative called Women Count, are pleased to present an analysis of women employed Off-Broadway in the four most recent theatrical seasons. A number of efforts  to count, study, analyze and report on the status of women in theatre, in recent years, have focused on playwrights and directors.  This new study looks at a broader range of professional roles with a specific focus on Off-Broadway productions.

The study, conducted by LPTW members and professional theatre women Judith Binus and Martha Wade Steketee, analyzes employment in 13 professional roles (including playwrights, directors, and designers) and provides an explicit focus on 355 Off-Broadway productions in 22 theatre companies for four complete seasons, 2010-2011 through 2013-2014. Women Count, part of the LPTW’s Advocacy Committee, is charged with continuing to count women working in American theater in upcoming seasons.”

Women Playwrights International Conference 2015

“In 2015, the Women Playwrights International Conference comes to the African continent for the first time. The WPI conference is a space for women playwrights to meet, network and share plays from all over the world. The five day conference programme will consist of keynote speeches, panels, hands-on workshops led by leading female theatre practitioners from the local and international theatre community, as well as a daily programme of play readings and productions. The conference will be hosted by WPI Cape Town in conjunction with the University of Cape Town Drama Department at the Hiddingh Campus in Gardens, Cape Town.”

Shows to See

The Dragon Play

Written by Jenny Connell Davis
Directed by Tracy Ward
Produced by Impact Theatre

In the frozen north a woman and her husband, weathering the challenges of their marriage, receive a mysterious visitor who threatens to upend their world. Decades before and thousands of miles away in the burning south, an 11-year-old boy and a 300-year-old — yet still relatively adolescent — dragon girl meet and fall in love. Far from fairy tales or airbrushed fantasies, these two achingly poignant stories alternate in a heart-rending dance of desire, longing, and commitment that spans time and geography.

Runs Thurs-Sun, through 12/14, at La Val Subterranean, Berkeley

5th Annual One Minute Play Festival

In Collaboration with Playwrights Foundation

The One-Minute Play Festival (#1MPF)  is a fast-paced evening of non-stop theater that will twist and turn your mind and heart – featuring brand new one-minute plays by 50+ of the Bay Area’s growing talent pool of exceptional contemporary writers, including some of the most important artistic voices in the nation.

Dec 15-16, 8 pm, at Brava Theater

Red Hot Patriot: The Kick-Ass Wit of Molly Ivins

By Margaret Engel and Allison Engel
Directed by David Esbjornson
Featuring Kathleen Turner

Two-time Tony and Oscar nominee Kathleen Turner makes her Berkeley Rep debut as Molly Ivins, the brassy, sharp-witted political journalist and best-selling author of Bushwacked. Celebrated for her folksy yet barbed humor, Ivins was the rowdy raconteur stirring up trouble in the old boy’s club and ridiculing those she deemed too big for their britches—earning her a widely read syndicated column and a seat next to Mark Twain as one of America’s beloved satirists. In Red Hot Patriot, Kathleen Turner is all smarts and sass as the redheaded firebrand, recounting her political rants and personal reflections with a liberal dose of piss and vinegar.

Runs through January 11 at Berkeley Rep

Crowded Fire’s Matchbox Series 2014

19 Wentworth Alley, Chinatown
By Eugenie Chan
Directed by Marilee Talkington

Drawing on the true history of her grandfather, a leader in a Chinese crime syndicate in early 1900s San Francisco, Eugenie Chan layers original material with fragments of actual family documents to explore the world Chan’s Grandfather knew — and made — one of lost hopes and grim choices.

December 9, 7pm at the Thick House

Image courtesy Indiewire

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