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  • Cory Molner

convergence-continuum announces 2024 Season


(CLEVELAND, OHIO – JANUARY 2022) After an extremely successful 2023 season, convergence-continuum's 2024 season was announced on Thursday January 11th, 2024. This season consists of five “main-stage” productions by Local and national playwrights, with one world premiere production. In addition to these five productions, convergence-continuum will also present three “tweener series” one-weekend only productions. The five mainstage productions are:




Stonewallin by Kari Barclay Mar 29 - Apr 20, directed by Jeannine Gaskin


Synopsis:

The witches are up to something in the small-town South. When Marsha moves from Berkeley to Virginia to reconnect with her family’s roots, she finds a barista with an astrology obsession, a Confederate monument gone missing, and the makings of a bisexual love story — if she wants it. With humanity, humor, and as many layers as a biscuit, this new play explores the families we choose, the families we don’t, and the folks making magic in a changing South.


About the Playwright:

Kari Barclay (they/them or he/him) is an award-winning writer, director, and researcher who serves as Assistant Professor of Theater at Oberlin College. They have created productions regionally and in New York at venues including Ars Nova, the San Francisco Mime Troupe, MirrorBox Theater, and Manbites Dog. Their original play CAN I HOLD YOU? was one of the first full-length pieces about asexuality performed in the U.S. and enjoyed a sold-out run in San Francisco and workshop in New York. Their newest play STONEWALLIN’ was the winner of the 2021 Southern Queer Playwriting Festival and opened at Richmond Triangle Players in February 2022.


Kari’s research interests include gender and sexuality studies, theater directing, consent theory, and asexuality studies. Their recent book, Directing Desire, examines the rise of consent-based approaches to staging sex in contemporary theater, known as intimacy choreography. It was published with Palgrave Macmillan in fall 2023. Their articles on performance and sexuality have appeared in Theatre Journal, Theatre Topics, and The Journal of Dramatic Theory and Criticism, among other venues. They integrate this work in theory and practice to advance racial and gender equity in the entertainment industry.

Kari received their PhD in Theater and Performance Studies from Stanford University in 2021. They are the recipient of the Ric Weiland Memorial Fellowship, Sudler Award in the Arts, Angier B. Duke Scholarship, and Samuel DuBois Cook Award for racial equity and social justice work. Kari lives in Cleveland, Ohio and loves supporting the theater community in Northeast Ohio and beyond.




Last Ship to Proxima Centauri by Greg Lam June 2-24, directed by Cory Molner

Synopsis:

The Earth has become uninhabitable. The last escape ship from Earth (Seattle, to be exact) arrives to its new home planet centuries after all the others. The pilots are not prepared for what they find there.


LAST SHIP TO PROXIMA CENTAURI asks us to examine 21st Century America through the lens of futurist neo-colonialism, 2000 years after the end of Must See TV.


About the Playwright:

Greg Lam is a playwright, screenwriter, and board game designer who lives in the Greater Boston area. He is the creator of the Boston Podcast Players podcast which presents excerpted readings of new full length plays by and interviews with Boston playwrights since 2016.

!n 2019, Greg was named an Artistic Fellow of the Dramatic Arts by the Massachusetts Cultural Council. He also was named the inaugural Pao Fellow by Company One PlayLab.

Greg is the co-founder of the Asian-American Playwright Collective. His full-length play REPOSSESSED received its world premiere at Theatre Conspiracy in Fort Myers, FL in 2018 after readings in Boston, Seattle, and Connecticut. It won the Lotus Lee Foundation New Work Initiative and the Theatre Conspiracy New Play Contest. His full-length play LAST SHIP TO PROXIMA CENATAURI received readings from Company One and Fresh Ink Theatre in 2019.

Greg was a member of the 2016 Company One PlayLab for the development of Boston area playwrights. His works have been produced by Company One, Fresh Ink Theatre, Pork Filled Productions, The Depot, The Boston Theatre Marathon, Open Theatre Project, Other World Theatre Paragon Festival, theatre@first, Navigators Theater, Fantastic.Z, The Pulp Stage, Ixion Theatre Ensemble, Eagle and Beaver Ensemble, Wishing Wind Creations, 4th Street Theatre, Midwest Dramatists Conference, The Best of All Possible Podcast, Aching Dogs Theatre Company, Shadow Boxing Theatre, and many others.




Speech & Debate by Stephen Karam August 2 - 24, directed by Leo Fez


Synopsis:

Three misfit teens in Salem, Oregon reluctantly join forces to combat local corruption, sex scandals and bad casting in the high school play by forming their school’s first speech and debate team in this fiercely funny dark comedy with music. They soon realize three voices are stronger than one and this could be their chance to finally be heard by the school and even the world. Their exposé culminates in a time-traveling George Michael-inspired musical version of Miller’s The Crucible.


About the Playwright:

Stephen Karam is the Tony Award-winning author of The Humans, Sons of the Prophet and Speech & Debate. He is a two-time winner of the Drama Critics Circle Award for Best Play, a two-time Pulitzer Prize finalist and a recipient of an OBIE Award for playwriting.

Stephen recently directed his first feature film, a version of The Humans for A24 films. He wrote a film adaptation of Chekhov’s The Seagull starring Annette Bening, which was released by Sony Picture Classics. His adaptation of Chekhov’s The Cherry Orchard premiered on Broadway as part of Roundabout’s 2016 season. Recent honors include the inaugural Horton Foote Playwriting Award, the inaugural Sam Norkin Drama Desk Award, two Outer Critics Circle Awards, a Lucille Lortel Award, Drama League Award, and Hull-Warriner Award.


Stephen is an Assistant Professor at The New School where he teaches playwriting. He is a graduate of Brown University and grew up in Scranton, PA.





The Pitchforks by Andrew Kramer (a world premiere) October 4 - 26th, directed by Eva Nel Brettrager


Synopsis:

The camera holds on a lingering shot of the buzzing neon sign and you know exactly where we’re at - EXT. a shitty roadside motel.

INT. A group of old friends reuniting to escape wife and life. But as the sun sets and the heat rises, old ghosts begin to walk among the living. Asking questions about queer representation in pop culture, The Pitchforks is a tender love-letter to and vicious indictment of horror movies and the people who love (and hate) (and make) them.


About the Playwright:

ANDREW KRAMER (He/His/Him) is a queer playwright from Cleveland, OH. He is a graduate of Ball State University’s Department of Theatre & Dance and a proud alumni of the the Emerging Writer’s Group at The Public Theatre. His plays have been developed through The Downstage Left Playwriting Residency at Stage Left Theatre, The Nord Playwriting Fellowship at Cleveland Public Theatre, the Groundbreakers Playwrights’ Group with the terraNOVA Theatre Collective, the SigWorks Musical Theatre Lab with Signature Theatre, the Ingram New Works Lab at Nashville Repertory Theatre) and the Core Apprentice Writer Program at The Playwrights Center. He was a finalist for the Forward Flux’s New American Plays Commission. His work has been seen in Cleveland, Indianapolis, Chicago, Brooklyn, Kansas City, Lincoln, Louisville, Nashville, Houston, Williamsburg VA, New York City, Sacramento, Washington D.C, Cairns Australia and Bucharest Romania.





This Side of Crazy by Del Shores December 6-21st directed by Amy Bistok


Synopsis:

Ditty Blaylock, the most prolific singer in gospel music history, is being honored by Gospel Music Network. All the stars are aligning to showcase Ditty’s songs on her TV special. But there is one glitch. A little hiccup. Ditty has promised a reunion of The Blaylock Sisters, her three adult daughters who were once national sensations – “little superstars for Jesus.”

Rachel, the oldest sister, who lives with Ditty, is furious when she finds out that her baby sister Bethany, an atheist and lesbian, and Abigail, her middle sister who has “anger issues” and currently is confined to a mental facility, are headed home. What the public doesn't know is that these complicated sisters have been estranged for over twenty-five years – and extreme past circumstances, including a husband left in a coma, have made reconciliation impossible.

Once the sisters are reunited, secrets are revealed, tempers flare and family wounds are exposed. But… the show must go on!


About the Playwright:

Del Shores is the writer/director/producer of the films Sordid Lives, Blues for Willadean, Southern Baptist Sissies and A Very Sordid Wedding. He wrote and executive produced the MGM feature Daddy's Dyin'...Who's Got The Will? His plays Cheatin’, Daddy’s Dyin’ (Who’s Got The Will?), Daughters of the Lone Star State, Sordid Lives, Southern Baptist Sissies, The Trials and Tribulations of a Trailer Trash Housewife, Yellow, This Side of Crazy and A Very Sordid Wedding are all published by Concord/Samuel French.

In television, Del Shores wrote, directed, executive produced and created the LOGO series, Sordid Lives: The Series. He also wrote and executive produced Showtime's groundbreaking Queer As Folk for the last three seasons, wrote and produced for Dharma & Greg and Ned & Stacey.


He has directed Academy Award winners Octavia Spencer and Whoopi Goldberg, Grammy Award winner Olivia Newton-John; Emmy winners/nominees Beau Bridges, Delta Burke, Leslie Jordan, Bonnie Bedelia, Bobbie Eakes, Patrika Darbo and Rue McClanahan; Spirit Award winner Dale Dickey; Screen Actor's Guild Award-winner Beth Grant; as well as Caroline Rhea, Debby Holiday and David Steen.

As a performer, Shores has performed in hundreds of standup gigs and in 2018 completed a national tour of his critically acclaimed award-winning one-man play Six Characters In Search Of A Play directed by Emerson Collins. The play was filmed and is now streaming worldwide.

His tenth play A Very Sordid Wedding (based on his 2017 film) had its world premiere in September 2021, playing to sold out houses at Kalita Humphries Theatre in Dallas for Uptown Players. Shores directed.

In November 2021, he directed his eleventh play, the world premiere of In Memoriam of Lena, at Theatre West on the campus of Northwestern State University, Louisiana with an all student cast and crew.


All performances will be at convergence-continuum’s Liminis Theater, 2438 Scranton Rd., Cleveland, OH 44113 in the historic Tremont neighborhood. Tickets are $23 general admission, $18 for seniors and $18 for students.Season ticket packages are available for $75-100. Tickets and information are available at www.convergence-continuum.org and 216-687-0074.


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