Recommended Theater: 2023 TED SNOWDEN READING SERIES (MTC at NY City Center)

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by Gregory Bernard on February 13, 2023

in Theater-New York


Now in its 25th year, this rehearsed reading series is dedicated to the support and development of innovative new work, offering each playwright a week-long rehearsal period with directors and actors. This year, the series will feature four new plays, including one MTC commission, by an exceptional group of writers. MTC is grateful to Ted Snowdon for his generous support of the reading series.

Several plays developed in this reading series have gone on to full productions at MTC, including David Auburn’s Tony Award and Pulitzer Prize-winning ProofJoe Hortua’s Between UsRoberto Aguirre-Sacasa’s Based on a Totally True StoryMolly Smith Metzler’s Close Up Space (Susan Smith Blackburn finalist), Abe Koogler’s Fulfillment Center, Jaclyn Backhaus’ India Pale Ale and Eleanor Burgess’s The Niceties.

2023 Ted Snowdon Reading Series
Manhattan Theatre Club
New York City Center (Stage I) 131 West 55th St
Mondays, March 6-27, 2023
for tickets (free) RSVP at MTC
space is limited and RSVPs are required

March 6 at 4pm: The Heart Sellersby Lloyd Suh, directed by May Adrales

For new Americans Jane and Luna, life in the USA has left them feeling isolated and invisible – until a chance encounter brings them together on Thanksgiving. Giving voice to the Asian immigrant experience in the wake of the Hart-Celler Act, a funny and deeply moving new play about connection, friendship, and home.

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LLOYD SUH (Playwright) is the recipient of the 2022 Harold and Mimi Steinberg Award, the 2020 Horton Foote Prize and the 2019 Herb Alpert Award for Theater. His play The Chinese Lady, premiered as a co-production by Barrington Stage Company and Ma-Yi Theater Company, was hailed a New York Times Critics’ Pick during its NY run. It returned to NYC in a co-production between the Public Theater and Ma-Yi in 2022. In the 2022-2023 season, Lloyd’s play The Far Country premiered at the Atlantic Theater and was also a New York Times Critics’ Pick, and The Heart Sellers will open at Milwaukee Rep in February.


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MAY ADRALES (Director) is a director, artistic leader, teacher and mother; she has directed over 25 world premieres. Her work has been seen most recently at Second Stage (Rajiv Joseph’s Letters of Suresh) Manhattan Theatre Club (Anchuli Felicia King’s Golden Shield, Qui Nguyen’s Vietgone) Signature Theatre, LCT3, The Public Theater, WP Theater, New York Theatre Workshop, Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Seattle Rep, Milwaukee Rep and South Coast Rep. wn/Trinity MFA program. MFA, Yale School of Drama. She is currently the Director of the Theatre Program at Fordham University.

March 13 at 4pm: As Aboveby Christine Quintana

Jo, a once-prominent botanical researcher eight years sober, begins to rebuild her life. An estranged daughter, a grieving mother, and a lonely brother seek to communicate with one another through a noisy world. In As Above, complicated human relationships mirror the relationships between trees and the mycelial networks that connect them. Only in the quiet of the forest can things become clear again.

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CHRISTINE QUINTANA (Playwright). Born in Los Angeles to a Mexican-American father and a Canadian mother of Dutch/British descent, Christine grew up on the unceded lands of the Musqueam, Squamish, and Tsleil-Waututh people, also known as Vancouver, BC. An award-winning playwright, actor, and producer, Christine’s plays have been performed in French, Spanish, German, and ASL. Creation highlights include Selfie (commissioned by Théâtre la Seizième and Young People’s Theatre); Espejos: Clean (translated and adapted by Paula Zelaya Cervantes, premiered with Neworld Theatre and South Coast Repertory); and Never The Last (co-created with Molly MacKinnon, premiered with Delinquent Theatre)

March 20 at 4pm: Watch Meby Dave Harris

How can I get over slavery if I can’t even get over my ex? Watch Me is the wild ass love story of a couple from their first date, to their first time, to a reckoning with sex, ancestry, desire, and Black Jesus.

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DAVE HARRIS (Playwright) is a poet and playwright from West Philly. Selected plays include Tambo & Bones (Playwrights Horizons, Center Theatre Group, 2022), Exception To The Rule (Roundabout Theatre Company, 2022), and Everybody Black (Humana Festival 2019). His first feature film, Summertime premiered at the 2020 Sundance Film Festival and was released in 2021. Dave is currently writing the feature adaptation of The Fortress Of Solitude amongst several other feature and television projects for AMC (Interview with the Vampire), ABC Signature, Goddard Textiles, and Amazon. His first full-length collection of poetry, “Patricide”, was published by Button Poetry.

March 27 at 4pm: An Oxford Manby Else Went, directed by Emma Rosa Went

Join us, dear audience, for a buoyant and raucous mythologization of the life and times of the first “modern” transgender man, Laurence Michael Dillon. Commissioned by MTC through the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, An Oxford Man is a witty, surprising, and tender theatrical rollick.

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ELSE WENT (they/she) (Playwright) is a trans identified playwright, whose work has been developed through: fellowships at The MacDowell Colony, Playwrights Realm, Trans Theatre Lab @ WP & The Public, and Living Room Theatre; commissions from Weston Playhouse, Florida Studio Theatre, and Parity Productions; residencies from Stillwright and Barn Arts Collective; and productions with The Tank and The Brick. Their queer epic Initiative was made a semifinalist in the ’20 O’Neill Conference, and their verse play Courage! To the Field! was a semifinalist for the Shakespeare’s New Contemporaries project at ASC.

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EMMA ROSA WENT (Director) is a New York based freelance theatre director who makes new and classic-text plays. Recent work includes: Much Ado About Nothing (Opera House Arts, Stonington ME); A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Connecticut Shakespeare Festival, 2021 Regional Broadway World Award for Best Direction of a Play); and readings at NYTW (Degenerates), Red Bull (Gallathea), and others. Also this spring: Romeo and Juliet (HVSF Educational Tour), Kit Marlowe (Revelation Reading, Red Bull), Initiative (Spotlight Series, The Public).

photo: JMA Photography




Plays from this reading series that have been produced elsewhere in New York and around the world include Jonathan Spector’s This Much I Know, Lauren Yee’s Young Americans, Jessica Dickey’s Nan and the Lower Body, Brittany K. Allen’s RedwoodPaola Lázaro’s There’s Always the HudsonSharyn Rothstein’s Right to Be ForgottenKimber Lee’s to the yellow houseJen Silverman’s Dangerous House, Nick Gandiello’s The BlamelessJocelyn Bioh’s Nollywood Dreams, Nicky Silver’s This Day ForwardMichael West’s The Chinese RoomHalley Feiffer’s I’m Gonna Pray for You So Hard, Joshua Harmon’s Significant OtherEthan Lipton’s TumachoRachel Bonds’ Five Mile LakeAyad Akhtar’s The Who and the WhatPenelope Skinner’s The Village BikeRona Munro’s Donny’s Brain, Jonathan Caren’s The RecommendationThe Civilians’ The Great Immensity, Heidi Schreck’s There Are No More Big SecretsEric Simonson’s Fake, David Adjmi’s StunningNaomi Iizuka’s Strike-SlipStephen Adly Guirgis’ The Little Flower of East OrangeJulia Cho’s DurangoAdam Rapp’s Red Light Winter and Theresa Rebeck’s The Scene.

TED SNOWDON has supported new plays and playwrights his entire career, working in both the commercial and non-profit sides of theater. His producing credits reach back to 1979’s Tony Award-winning The Elephant Man and include more recent plays and musicals like Buyer & CellarThe VisitA Gentleman’s Guide to Love and MurderThe MountaintopReasons To Be PrettyThe Little Dog LaughedSpring Awakening, and Souvenir. With MTC he co-produced Master ClassTime Stands Still, and LoveMusik.
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