Continuing the Conversation:
An Evening of Short Plays Inspired by Current Events
April 26 - May 13, 2018
by Suzanne Bradbeer, Richard Dresser, Steve Harper, Dania Ramos, Lia Romeo and David Lee White
Mother's Day Gift! Buy a ticket for yourself at regular price and bring your mom along for free.
Discount codes do not apply.
Thursday, April 26: 8pm
Friday, April 27: 8pm
Saturday, April 28: 8pm
Sunday, April 29: 2pm
Friday, May 4: 8pm
Saturday, May 5: 8pm
Sunday, May 6: 2pm
Friday, May 11: 8pm
Saturday, May 12: 8pm
Sunday, May 13: 2pm
Preview performance, all seats $20
Opening night, post-show reception
Senior Sunday, all senior tickets $20
free post-show talkback
Free post-show talkback
May 11, 12 & 13
Free post-show talkbacks
DRT patrons can show a receipt from Continuing the Conversation to receive 10% on a meal. Receipt must be presented at beginning of meal. 10% off the bearer's food and beverage check, one 10% off coupon per table.
Hat Tavern is located at 570 Springfield Avenue Summit, NJ 07901 908.273.7656
Free post-show talk backs added after May 11 through 13 shows. The cast and crew want to talk with you. Please come and talk with us.
Sexual harassment. Media fatigue.
Hurricane Maria's devastation of Puerto Rico.
Confederate icons. Charlottesville violence.
Deciding to run for elected office.
These are the "ripped from the headlines" topics that will be explored.
A follow-up to Dreamcatcher's Evening of Short Plays in Response to the Election, Continuing the Conversation is an opportunity to check in with the community on what's important to us in real time. Written on themes chosen by the writers in the months prior to the production, Continuing the Conversation will be focused on the interaction between the stories we tell in the theatre and the lives we are living. It's a chance to connect artists to audience in an immediate way, with several discussions following the performances throughout the run.
Participating playwrights include Suzanne Bradbeer (Shakespeare in Vegas), Richard Dresser (Rounding Third), Steve Harper (American Crime), Dania Ramos (Mi Casa Tu Casa), Lia Romeo (Connected ) and David Lee White (Blood: A Comedy). A cast of seven actors will perform the plays to create a full and varied night of theatre that will inspire reflection and stimulate discussion.
Read Ruth Ross' review:
Read Melanie Wilson's review:
Cast & Creative Team
Cast: Michael Aquino, Noreen Farley, Gary-Kayi Fletcher, Ben Kaufman, Beth Painter, Amanda Salazar, Daria Sullivan.
Director: Laura Ekstrand, Jessica O'Hara-Baker, Harriett Trangucci
Stage manager: Amy Hadam*
Assistant Stage Manager: TBA
Scenic designer: Yamila Chiappe
Lighting designer: Zach Pizza
Sound designer: Jeff Knapp
Costume designer: Laura Ekstrand
Playwrights: Suzanne Bradbeer, Richard Dresser, Steve Harper, Dania Ramos, Lia Romeo and David Lee White
Composer: Kate Brennan
* member of the Dreamcatcher ensemble
† member of the Actors' Equity
Meet the playwrights:
Suzanne Bradbeer’s selected plays include: CONFEDERATES (Kilroy’s Honorable Mention 2015 and 2016) opened the 2016-17 season at TheatreWorks – Silicon Valley. NAKED INFLUENCE was premiered by Capital Rep in January, 2016. Other plays include: THE GOD GAME (Gulfshore Playhouse/Capital Rep, Hudson Stage, 4th Wall Theatre Company, etc.); SHAKESPEARE IN VEGAS (Dreamcatcher Rep/PTNJ); FULL BLOOM (Barrington Stage, Dreamcatcher Rep, Hudson Stage, etc.); LONE STAR GRACE (Theater Workshop of Nantucket); BETHLEHEM, PA (City Theatre of Miami). Suzanne was a contributing writer on SPEAKEASY (Joe’s Pub at the Public Theater), and is the librettist for the musicals COCUS AND DOOT (commissioned and produced by Vital Theatre Company) and MAX AND THE TRUFFLE PIG (NYMF).
Suzanne has received grants from the New York Foundation for the Arts, the Berrilla Kerr Foundation, the Anna Sosenko Trust, as well as the BMI Foundation’s Harrington Award. She has twice been a winner of the NEXT ACT! New Play Summit at Capital Rep, and was twice an Honorable Mention for the Kilroy’s List. Suzanne was also a winner of the Ashland New Plays Festival and the Dayton Playhouse FutureFest.
Suzanne’s plays have been published by Playscripts, Samuel French, Applause Books, the Connotation Press, and in multiple Smith & Kraus anthologies. Suzanne worked as a dramaturg for Arthur Miller and Jim Houghton on Signature Theatre Company’s production of THE AMERICAN CLOCK. She is a member of the Ensemble Studio Theatre, the Dramatists Guild, and is a regular moderator at the Actors Studio Playwright/Director Workshop.
RICHARD DRESSER’S plays have been produced in New York, regional theater, and Europe. They include ROUND-ING THIRD, which started in Chicago, appeared off-Broadway and has had hundreds of productions. It was recent-ly made into a film starring John C. McGinley and Garret Dillahunt for release in 2016. BELOW THE BELT and GUN-SHY, both started at the Humana Festival at Actors Theatre of Louisville before moving off-Broadway. BELOW THE BELT was made into the film “Human Error” directed by Robert M. Young which appeared at Sundance. His trilogy of plays about happiness in America includes AUGUSTA (working class), THE PURSUIT OF HAPPINESS (middle class), and A VIEW OF THE HARBOR (upper class). Other plays are: THE LAST DAYS OF MICKEY & JEAN, SOMETHING IN THE AIR, THE DOWNSIDE, ALONE AT THE BEACH, WONDERFUL WORLD, and BETTER DAYS, plus many short plays.
A new play, TROUBLE COMETH, about two executives locked in an existential struggle against an impossible dead-line premiered at the San Francisco Playhouse in the spring of 2015 and another new play, CLOSURE, premiered in the summer at New Jersey Repertory Theatre in Long Branch, starring Wendie Malick and Gary Cole. Other pro-jects include the book for a musical, JOHNNY BASEBALL (lyrics by Willie Reale, music by Robert Reale), about the Curse of the Red Sox, which premiered at A.R.T. in Cambridge, and moved on to the Williamstown Theatre Festi-val. A new bluegrass ghost musical, THE HOLLER (also with the Reale brothers) was workshopped at the William-stown Theatre Festival.
He recently finished “PUBLIC SPEAKING: Three short films starring Treat Williams.” He has also worked extensively in television. He created the web series “Life Coach” for AMC starring Cheri Oteri. He is a former member of New Dramatists and twice attended the O’Neill National Playwrights Conference. He currently teaches at Rutgers and is on the board of the Writers Guild Initiative, which does writing workshops with veterans and caregivers among other groups.
Steve Harper is a TV writer, playwright & actor. Dreamcatcher produced his play Iggie Imagines Marriage (part of Love, Hate, Friendship, Marriage) and he wrote lyrics for the original DRT musical Brink of Life. His plays have been produced and developed by The Juilliard School, The American Airlines Theatre, Classical Theater of Harlem, New York Theatre Workshop, New York Stage & Film, The Tribeca Theatre Festival, American Theatre Company (Chicago), Malibu Playhouse, and The Celebration Theatre (LA). His play Actual Cost was published by The Kenyon Review Online.
Steve is currently a writer on the new TNT drama DEADLIER THAN THE MALE. Previous TV writing includes ABC's AMERICAN CRIME and the USA Network’s COVERT AFFAIRS. He's also written the short films Intelligence, and Betty on the Bed (also director, producer and actor). Steve’s web series, SEND ME (about time traveling black people) premiered on BET.com in 2016 and garnered an Emmy nomination for series star Tracie Thoms. You can find it now on YouTube. He’s currently developing a TV version of the piece with producer John Ridley and ABC.
Steve is a graduate of Yale, The A.R.T. Institute at Harvard, The CBS Writers Mentoring Program and the playwriting program at Juilliard. He is also a certified Creativity Coach specializing in helping writers craft dramatic scripts and launch professional careers.
Dania Ramos is an author, playwright, and teaching artist. Her middle grade novel Who’s Ju? (Northampton House Press) won the 2015 International Latino Book Award for Best YA eBook and was a finalist for the ILBA Mariposa Award for Best First Book.
Dania’s stage writing credits include Mi Casa Tu Casa (Luna Stage, Dreamcatcher Rep, New Jersey Theatre Alli-ance’s Stages Festival) and Hielo (developed through the Women Playwrights Project at Writers Theatre of New Jersey). Her plays have also been featured in the New Jersey Women Playwrights Series (co-presented by Writers Theatre of New Jersey and Speranza Theatre Company), Repertorio Español’s Nuestras Voces Reading Series, Writers Theatre of New Jersey’s FORUM and Soundings Reading Series, Luna Stage’s Short Play Festival, and the Maslow Salon Reading Series at Wilkes University. She’s been a finalist in the MetLife Nuestras Voces National Playwriting Competition and the recipient of a New Jersey State Council on the Arts Playwriting Fellowship.
Dania is a creative writing instructor and a theatre teaching artist. She has led arts residencies and workshops for organizations including New Jersey Performing Arts Center, Writers Theatre of New Jersey, Writopia Lab, and the New Jersey School of Dramatic Arts.
Dania is a member of the Dramatists Guild of America, the Society of Children Book Writers and Illustrators, and Actors Equity Association. She holds an MA in Creative Writing from Wilkes University and a BFA in Theatre Performance from Montclair State University. She lives in New Jersey with her husband.
Lia Romeo’s plays have been produced at 59E59, Project Y Theatre Company, Unicorn Theatre, HotCity Theatre, Stillwater Theatre, Renegade Theatre Experiment, Forward Flux Productions, New Origins Theatre Company, Jersey City Theater Center, and Xpressions Performing Arts Network, and have been developed at the Lark Theatre, San Francisco Playhouse, Abingdon Theatre, Writers Theatre of New Jersey, Orlando Shakes, New Jersey Repertory Theatre, Kitchen Dog Theatre, and elsewhere. She has been nominated for the American Theatre Critics’ Association’s Steinberg Award for best new play, the New York Innovative Theatre Award for outstanding full-length play, the L. Arnold Weissberger Award, and the Susan Smith Blackburn Prize. She has been recognized by the O’Neill (finalist), the Heideman Award (finalist), and the Kilroys List (honorable mention).
She was the National New Play Network Emerging Playwright-in-Residence at Writers Theatre of New Jersey, and she is currently a member of the Project Y Playwrights Group, the Athena Theatre Playwrights Group, and the BMI Librettists Workshop. Her plays are published by Playscripts and Smith and Kraus. She is also the literary manager at Project Y Theatre Company, and the author of a novel, Dating the Devil (BelleBooks), and a humor book, 11,002 Things to Be Miserable About (Abrams Image), which has sold over 35,000 copies worldwide.
David Lee White
David Lee White is a New Jersey based playwright and educator that has worked with Passage Theatre, McCarter Theatre, Dreamcatcher Rep, PlayPenn, Rider University and Drexel University as well as many other theatres and theatre programs in the NJ/NY/PA area. He was recently commissioned by the New Jersey Performing Arts Center and Passage Theatre to create the play SANISM, which will premiere in 2017. In the summer of 2015, David creat-ed the show FIVE MINUTES TO PLACES for the McCarter Theatre Education Program’s Comedy Conservatory. His play BLOOD: A COMEDY was been produced at Passage Theatre (2009) and Dreamcatcher Rep (2012). David also worked with Passage’s Artistic Director June Ballinger to create the mainstage shows TRENTON LIGHTS and PRO-FILES, which made use of interviews with Trenton residents on the topics of race, identity and history in Trenton, NJ. His play SLIPPERY AS SIN also received its world premiere at Passage in 2011. The one-act play WHITE BABY was originally produced at Passage Theatre, then at Emerging Artists Theatre in NY. His newest play REAL TRUE CRIME received a reading in the Hive Exposed series in NY in March of 2015, and his solo show PANTHER HOLLOW will be seen at Dreamcatcher Rep, Drexel University and the United Solo Festival in the NY in the Fall of 2015.
Since 2005, he has been creating oral-history based plays with Trenton area teens based on social and cultural issues. IF I COULD IN MY HOOD I WOULD… was about inner-city gangs, FIRE GIRLS took on the issue of girl-bullying and URBAN CENTRAL examined the 1967 race riots that took place a Trenton Central High. Subsequent shows in this vein include GET OFF THE BUS and BOBASHELA. He created “Stoop Theatre” with the Trenton High drama club and created the show THIS TRENTON LIFE which was the subject an Emmy-Award nominated broadcast on PCK Media’s STATE OF THE ARTS.
David Lee White is the Associate Artistic Director and Resident Playwright at Passage Theatre in Trenton. He also runs the Passage Play Lab which has aided in the development of plays by New Jersey-based playwrights. David is also the curator of the Rider University New Play Festival , an instructor at PlayPenn in Philadelphia and teaches Dramatic Analysis at Drexel University. He is currently working on the play THE FESTIAL QUARTET and the musical LIVE STREAM with singer/songwriter Sarah Donner and director/co-creator Adam Immerwahr. The piece has been workshopped twice at Bristol-Riverside Theatre as part of their “America Rising” series.
Meet the composer:
Kate Brennan is an Assistant Professor of Voice & Acting at OCU. Artistic Director of Ignition Arts (www.ignitionarts.org) and member of AEA, Kate is a Certified Yoga Teacher, Certified Thai Bodyworker, Designated Linklater Teacher, and creator of three musicals: Some Assembly Required (2010), ELFuego (2012) and ALIEN8 (2017). Written with David Lee White, ALiEN8 was created at McCarter Theatre Center in Princeton, NJ and had an Equity Staged Reading with Ignition Arts in March 2018. Her dramedy, What’s in Store, received a developmental reading with Ignition Arts as part of International Women’s Voices Day in January 2018. She is the creator of The Brennan Book Blog (brennanbookblog.tumblr.com) and host of The Brennan Book Blog Podcast,available on iTunes and SoundCloud. In January, she brought Brennan Check-In (www.brennancheckin.com) to HBMG’s National Winter Playwrights Retreat in Creede, CO for the second year. Kate holds an MFA from UVA. www.katebrennan.org