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Erin Bregman | Christopher Chen
Lauren Gunderson | Aaron Loeb
Geetha Reddy | Kate E. Ryan
Andrew P. Saito | Tanya Shaffer


Resident Playwright News

Piloted in January 2008, and launched in September 2008, the goal of the Resident Playwrights initiative is to grow and sustain the Bay Area as a vibrant and fertile center for new plays. Tailored towards the specific needs of local Bay Area mid-career playwrights and early career writers of exceptional talent, the Resident Playwrights Program is a three-year residency that provides resources for the pursuit of individual career goals and creative projects, increases the visibility of Bay Area writers, and fosters community. The six playwrights who comprised the first class of residents are now entering their second full year; and are joined in 2009/10 by four new members, who will also complete a three-year cycle. Playwrights meet regularly over 8 months of each year to advance new creative projects, with the support of PF Staff, studios and access to directors, dramaturgs and actors. The project is coordinated by PF's Staff Dramaturg, Maryanne Olson. For more information contact amy (at) playwrightsfoundation (dot) org

Current Resident Playwrights: 2012/13

Erin Bregman loves being a resident playwright at the Playwrights Foundation. She has been a finalist for the Princess Grace Award, the Jerome Fellowship, Aurora's Global Age Project, and the Bay Area Playwrights Festival. Erin has had work produced or developed with Just Theatre, The Lark, the Playwrights Foundation, FuryFactory, Actors Theatre of Santa Cruz, UCSB New Plays Festival, and PlayGround, and has received commissions from the Magic Theatre/Sloan Foundation (2006), Just Theater (2008), and PlayGround (2009, 2010). Her short work has been published in Best of Playground 2009 & 2010, Spectrum Literary Journal, and Muse(d) Magazine. During the day she works as a teaching artist for the San Francisco Opera, and runs Little Opera, an all-kids opera company.

Christopher Chen’s plays include Into the Numbers, The Window Age and Anomienaulis. His work has been produced and developed by Central Works Theatre Ensemble, Bay Area Playwrights Festival, Edinburgh Fringe Festival, Beijing Fringe Festival, American Conservatory Theater, The Lark Play Development Center, hotINK Festival, Theatre Mu, Silk Road Theatre Project, Fluid Motion, Asian American Theater Company, and Crowded Fire, where he is currently developing his newest play The Hundred Flowers Project, about Mao Tse-Tung. Honors include a Ford Foundation Emerging Writer of Color Grant, 2nd Place in the Belarus Free Theater International Competition of Modern Dramaturgy for Into the Numbers, Jerome Finalist, Seven Devils Finalist, and Princess Grace and O’Neill Conference Semi-Finalist. He is currently a Resident Playwright at the Playwrights Foundation, a member of the Magic Theatre Artist's Lab and Just Theater New Play Lab, and is co-director of the Asian American Theater Company New Works Incubator Program. He is a graduate of U.C. Berkeley, and holds an M.F.A. in Playwriting from S.F. State. He has been translated into Russian and Chinese.

Lauren Gunderson received her MFA from NYU, her BA from Emory, and is an NYU Reynolds Fellow in Social Entrepreneurship. Her 2011 3-city rolling world premiere of Exit, Pursued By A Bear, developed in PF's Rough Reading series in 2010, continues across the country. Rock Creek: Southern Gothic was featured in the Bay Area Playwrights Festival 2011. Her play Silent Sky premiered at South Coast Rep this April, and will run at Marin Theatre Company next year. Emilie: La Marquise Du Chatelet Defends Her Tonight was commissioned and premiered at South Coast Rep in 2009, now published by Samuel French and running across the country. Fire Work was developed at The O'Neill National Playwrights Conference, and is a 2011 winner for Aurora Theatre's Global Age Project. Her first musical for The Kennedy Center, The Amazing Adventures of Dr. Wonderful and Her Dog!, opens this fall in DC. She is commissioned for 2 musicals with The Kennedy Center, a musical with Harry Connick Jr., and new plays for South Coast Rep and SF Playhouse. She has developed plays with Second Stage and Primary Stages in NYC, New Rep in Boston, Playwrights Foundation, Crowded Fire, Aurora Theatre, and The Magic Theatre in San Francisco, Kitchen Dog Theatre in Dallas, Synchronicity, Actor Express and Horizon Theatre in Atlanta, JAW/West in Portland, WORDBridge, Brave New Works, and others. She received a Sloan Science Script Award (2008) for her screenplay Grand Unification. She teachers and speaks on the intersection of science and theatre, and writes for The Huffington Post. She is currently developing a tv series for MTV about science fairs.

Aaron Loeb's work has been performed in San Francisco, New York, Los Angeles, Sacramento, Ft. Worth, San Jose and Connecticut. His full-length plays include Brown, First Person Shooter, Blastosphere (with Geetha Reddy) and Abraham Lincoln's Big, Gay Dance Party, which had its Off-Broadway premiere in 2010. Among the honors Loeb has received are: two Bay Area Theater Critic Circle Awards for Best New Play (First Person Shooter in 2007, Abraham Lincoln's Big, Gay Dance Party in 2008), Outstanding Play from the New York International Fringe Festival (Abraham Lincoln's Big, Gay Dance Party 2009), GLAAD Media Award Nominee (Abraham Lincoln's Big, Gay Dance Party 2009), and seven "Emerging Playwright Awards" from PlayGround. He is a member of the Dramatists Guild, Inc. and a Playwrights Foundation resident playwright.

Geetha Reddy's plays include Safe House (SFPlayhouse Sandbox 2010) and Blastosphere (with Aaron Loeb, CentralWorks 2009), Girl in a Box, Me Given You, Blue God Countdown, and Book Club! The Musical. She received the 2005-2006 June Anne Baker Prize, five "Emerging Playwright" awards and multiple alumni commissions from PlayGround. Her plays have been included in the Bay Area Playwrights Festival, the Playwright's Revolution Festival, the Playwrights Foundation's 'Rough Reading' series, and the Just Theatre PlayLab. Her short plays have been featured in the Best of PlayGround Festival, the Santa Rosa Quickies Festival and the SF Fringe Festival where she won Best of Fringe. She is a Playwright's Foundation Resident Playwright and member of the Dramatist's Guild.

Kate E. Ryan's plays include Design Your Kitchen, Dot, Him, Mark Smith, Science is Close (a sequel to Dot) and an adaptation of Sophocles' Women of Trachis. A recent Bay Area transplant, Kate was a BASH! playwright in the 2011 Bay Area Playwrights Festival. In New York, Kate's work has been produced or developed by companies including 13P, Clubbed Thumb, The Drama League, The Flea Theater, The Ontological, Soho Rep, Target Margin and The Vineyard. Kate is a member of the OBIE-winning playwrights collective 13P and is an Artistic Associate with the New York-based company Clubbed Thumb, which produces new plays by living American writers. She is also on the Artistic Advisory Board of the Bushwick Starr. Formerly, she was Co-Curator of the multidisciplinary performance series Little Theater at Tonic (OBIE grant), and Co-Chair of the Soho Rep Writer/Director Lab.

Andrew P. Saito's plays include La Lechera, El Río, finalist for the Princess Grace Award, Krispy Kritters in the Scarlett Night, featured at Cutting Ball Theater's 2011 Risk Is This...Festival, and The Patron Saint of Monsters, selected for a 2012 Core Apprentice developmental reading at the Playwrights Center of Minneapolis. Other presenters include the Bay Area Playwrights Festival, Brava! for Women in the Arts, Kearny Street Workshop, Asian American Theatre Company, La Peña Cultural Center, and Mixed Phoenix Theatre Company in New York. He has been twice commissioned by Handful Players, and has taught playwriting in rural Mayan villages in Guatemala, and with WritersCorps, Performing Arts Workshop, legendary Peruvian theatre collective Yuyachkani, and Montalvo Arts Center as a Teaching Artist Fellow. A two-time alternate for a Fulbright Fellowship in Creative Writing, as well finalist for as a Jerome Playwriting Fellowship, Andrew is a proud founding member of Cut the Rhino, a 5-member theatre collective formed by the 2011 graduating class of the Iowa Playwrights Worksho.

Tanya Shaffer's plays and original solo performances include Baby Taj, Let My Enemy Live Long!, Brigadista, Miss America's Daughters, and the one-act play The People in the Park, as well as Social Work, co-written for the San Francisco Mime Troupe, and On the Other Side, a children’s play co-written with Alisa Peres. Her work has been produced by Berkeley Repertory Theatre, San Diego Repertory Theatre, A Contemporary Theatre (Seattle), TheatreWorks, Talespinners Theatre Company, and others, and has toured to more than forty cities in the U.S. and Canada. Tanya's solo show Let My Enemy Live Long! ran for more than six months in the San Francisco area and was awarded a Bay Area Theatre Critics' Award for Solo Performance. Her play Baby Taj was selected by the San Francisco Chronicle, the San Jose Mercury News, and the Oakland Tribune as one of the Top Ten Shows of 2005, and was nominated for an American Theatre Critics Association Steinberg Award. It is now available in print from Samuel French, Inc. Tanya is also the author of the book Somebody's Heart is Burning: A Woman Wanderer in Africa, which was profiled in Vogue and USA Today and selected by the San Francisco Chronicle as one of the Best Books of 2003. Her latest project, The Fourth Messenger, a musical written in collaboration with composer Vienna Teng, has enjoyed readings and workshops with Playwrights Foundation and TheatreWorks, and will premiere in the Bay Area in late 2012/early 2013. Visit her online queendom at tanyashaffer.com.


Eugenie Chan | Garret Jon Groenveld
Julia Jarcho | Peter Sinn Nachtrieb
Marisela Treviño Orta | Brian Thorstenson

Eugenie Chan's plays include Kitchen Table; Daphne Does Dim Sum; Rancho Grande; Emil, A Chinese Play; Bone To Pick; Novell-Aah!; Pilgrim; Consent; Tour Sino, a radio play; and the original story and libretto for Snakewoman, an opera. Her work has been produced or developed on the East Coast at the Public Theatre, Ma-Yi Theatre, Pan Asian Rep, Perishable Theatre, Centenary Stage, Duke and Columbia Universities; in the Midwest at PlayLabs; in Seattle at the Northwest Asian American Theatre, the Group Theatre; Los Angeles at East West Players; and in San Francisco at the Magic Theatre, Cutting Ball, Thick Description, San Francisco Mime Troupe, Brava! For Women in the Arts, Opera Piccola/StageBridge, and the Bay Area Playwrights Festival. DAPHNE was produced this February at Centenary Stage. Bone to Pick was part of Cutting Ball’s 2008 Avant-Garde-a-Rama, and will be remounted during their current season. Current commissions: the Magic Theatre/Sloan Science Initiative, Cutting Ball/SF Foundation. Education: B.A., Yale in Literature. M.F.A., NYU in Dramatic Writing. She is a Resident Playwright at the Playwrights Foundation, New Dramatists, and an Associate Artist at Cutting Ball Theatre in San Francisco.

Garret Jon Groenveld is a San Francisco based poet and playwright. The author of many plays, his work has appeared in BAPF 1999 (The Blood of Winter, now called The Absence of Birds) and 2004 (Missives). Missives premiered at Theatre Rhino in 2005 and will receive its New York premiere in March 2008 by Animated Theatreworks at 59E59, in no small part to his participation in the Sister Cities Project through the Playwrights Foundation. Missives was originally commissioned by PlayGround, which also commissioned the full lengths plays The Grand Divorce and his current play, The Serving Class. He has an MA in Poetry and an MFA in Playwriting from San Francisco State University and has worked with Edward Albee in his advanced workshop at the University of Houston.

Julia Jarcho is a playwright, director and performer. Her plays include American Treasure (13P, New York, 2009 and Bay Area Playwrights Festival 2009), The Highwayman (NTUSA performance space, Brooklyn, 2004; published in The Best American Short Plays of 2005-2006, Applause Books), A Small Hole (Performance Lab 115, FringeNYC, 2006), All I Do Is Dream of You (Sophiensaele and English Theatre Berlin, 2006), Take Me Away (Il faut brûler pour briller festival, Paris, 2007), The Whole Tree (Electric) (Playwrights Foundation Rough Reading Series 2008) and Nursery (Young Playwrights Festival, Cherry Lane Theater, New York, 2001). She was a writer-in-residence at the 2002 Eugene O'Neill Playwrights Conference and won a Berrilla Kerr award the same year. She is a Resident Playwright at the Playwrights Foundation, a board member of Young Playwrights Inc. and a member of the New York-based playwrights' collective 13P.

Peter Sinn Nachtrieb is a San Francisco-based playwright whose works include boom (TCG's most produced play 2009-10), T.I.C. (Trenchcoat In Common) , Hunter Gatherers (2007 ATCA/Steinberg New Play Award, 2007 Will Glickman Prize), Colorado, and Multiplex. His work has been seen off-Broadway and across the country including at Ars Nova, SPF, Woolly Mammoth Theatre, Seattle Repertory, Actors Theatre of Louisville, Cleveland Public Theatre, Brown/Trinity Playwrights Rep, Wellfleet Harbor Actor’s Theatre, Dad’s Garage, and in the Bay Area at Encore Theatre, Killing My Lobster, Marin Theatre Company, Impact Theatre, and The Bay Area Playwrights Festival. He is under commission from South Coast Rep, A.C.T., and is a Resident Playwright at the Playwrights Foundation, San Francisco. Peter holds a degree in Theater and Biology from Brown and an MFA in Creative Writing from San Francisco State University. He likes to promote himself online at peternachtrieb.com.

Marisela Treviño Orta received an MFA in Writing from the University of San Francisco. Her first play Braided Sorrow was read at the 2005 Bay Area Playwrights Festival, the 2006 [Inside] the Ford Summer Reading Series and won the 2006 Chicano/Latino Literary Prize in Drama. Currently Marisela is working on American Triage, a play commissioned by Marin Theatre Company; Ghost Limb, a new play in development with Just Theater's '08 Play Lab; and Woman on Fire, a play commissioned by the Latino Playwrights Initiative. Her poetry has appeared in BorderSenses, Double room, 26: A Journal of Poetry and Poetics and Traverse.

Brian Thorstenson's plays include: The Horses (Alter Theater Ensemble), Over the Mountain (Brava Center for Women in the Arts, The Global Age Project, 2003 Bay Area Playwrights Festival), Wakefield; or, Hello Sophia and Shadow Crossing (Central Works Theater Ensemble), Drop (Alter Theater Ensemble), Heading South (The Studio at Theater Rhinoceros, The 450 Geary Theater), and Summerland (Alternative Theater Ensemble, 2000 Bay Area Playwrights Festival, Wings Theatre Co., NYC). He has collaborated on two dance theater pieces, Tuesday and Sugarfoot Stomp, with Stephen Pelton Dance Theater. His radio adaptation of Sinclair Lewis’ It Can’t Happen Here was broadcast nationally on the Pacifica Radio Network. He was an artist in residence at the Blue Mountain Center in 1999 and 2001, and the Djerassi Resident Artist’s Program in 1996. Brian is a member of the Resident Playwrights Initiative at the Playwrights Foundation, San Francisco, playwright in residence with Stephen Pelton Dance Theater and a member of the Dramatists Guild. He teaches at San Francisco State University and Santa Clara University. Brian received a B.A. in Theater from Willamette University, and an M.F.A. in Creative Writing from San Francisco State University. He lives in San Francisco.