27th Season (2015–2016)


November 8 - 10, 2013 |

Tired of the classics and looking for a challenge? Take a risk on new plays. We dare you.

An engaging, fast-paced weekend packed with world premiere plays, distinctive panels, and lively parties, PlayFest offers audiences the rare opportunity to be a part of new play development. Converse with playwrights, directors, and actors, while absorbing groundbreaking new works. This three-day event tears down the barrier between artist and audience, putting YOU at the heart of the process.

Orlando Shakespeare Theater in Partnership with UCF is dedicated to the development of new plays, one of our country's most enduring art forms. PlayFest is a nationally recognized program and represents one of the strongest commitments to new plays in the U.S. Over the years, Orlando Shakes has helped nurture and develop over 100 new plays – many of which have received subsequent productions in New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, Seattle, and Washington D.C.

Many audience favorites from PlayFest have been developed into full productions in Orlando Shakes' Harriett’s New Play Series. Your input is vital to the extended life of new plays.

Keynote speakers and performances have included Philip Seymour Hoffman, Olympia Dukakis, Theresa Rebeck, John Pielmeier, Israel Horivitiz, Tony Award winner Jon Jory, and Pulitzer Prize winner Robert Schenkkan.

Saturday, November 9 at 7:00 pm (FREE)
Lee Blessing’s A Walk in the Woods was nominated for Tony and Olivier Awards and a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize. His plays have twice won the Steinberg/American Theatre Critics’ Association Award, among many other honors. Both the Signature Theatre and Portland, Oregon’s Profile Theatre have devoted full seasons to Blessing’s plays. Notable world and regional premieres: A User’s Guide to Hell, Featuring Bernard Madoff, Project Y Theatre, NYC; When We Go upon the Sea, 59E59th St. in New York and InterAct Theatre, Philadelphia; Great Falls, Humana New Play Festival of the Actors Theatre of Louisville and Ensemble Theatre, Sydney, Australia; Courting Harry, History Theatre, St. Paul, MN; A Body of Water, Tyrone Guthrie Theater and Old Globe Theatre. Recent works include “Seven Joys” and “Wood for the Fire” for London’s Tricycle Theatre. Until recently, Blessing headed the graduate playwriting program at Mason Gross School of the Arts, Rutgers University. He is married to playwright and TV writer-producer Melanie Marnich.

From Page to Stage: The Process of Having Your Play Produced and the Challenges of Second Productions
Sunday, November 10 at 2:15 pm (FREE)
Join PlayFest actors and directors in an enlightening discussion about the importance of new plays and their future in American Theatre.




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