Jarrott Productions' audio production of my play The Frog Prince has been nominated for a whopping (hopping??) 11 B. Iden Payne Awards!
Outstanding Audio Production
Outstanding Direction – David R. Jarrott
Outstanding Lead Performer – Jacqui Calloway
Outstanding Lead Performer – Toby Minor
Outstanding Featured Performer – Janelle Buchanan
Outstanding Featured Performer – Karen Jambon
Outstanding Featured Performer – Beau Paul
Outstanding Featured Performer – Rupert Reyes
Outstanding Small Cast
Outstanding Original Score – Dave Cooper & The One-Man Frog Band
Outstanding Sound Design – Craig Brock
For the uninitiated, the B. Iden Payne Awards Council recognizes outstanding theatrical performance, production, and design in Austin, Texas. If you're on the council and need to submit your votes, you can listen to the play FOR FREE for a limited time via Jarrott's website. Or if you just want to listen for your own personal enjoyment, that's great, too!
Big thanks to the council for recognizing our work, and big thanks to Jarrott Production for doing such beautiful work with my play!
We're a little over halfway through Frogust, and my adaptation of The Frog Prince has gotten some really nice press!
The Austin Chronicle calls it "one fine-ass studio production" that's an "acerbically modern and politically savvy take on a classic fairytale."
Louise Penn of LouReviews over in London praised the script for "ooz[ing] suggestive puns, as well as addressing the quite troubling premise that an animal that once was human might take advantage of its size and vulnerability to cross a behavioural barrier."
"The Frog Prince looks at the fanaticism of fairytales," she continues. "If you are familiar with the collections assembled by Angela Carter, you will know that these myths and tales are often given a sexual or erotic tinge, and such is true of this audio play, as it addresses some difficult topics in an amusing and immersive way, with a touch of music as it goes."
Finally, director David Jarrott and I had two really fun Austin radio interviews over at KUT and KOOP-FM. Big thanks to Michael Lee, Lisa Scheps, and Nicole Shiro for talking with us!
Check out all of our press so far (and any future reviews we get) over at Jarrott Productions. And be sure to get your tickets before Frogust ends and the show croaks for good!
Jarrott Productions' world-premiere audio production of my play The Frog Prince is now available to stream!
I'm truly blown away by what the team did with my little show. Tickets are $10 per household through August (Frogust) 31st. You can get them here.
It's meant so much to be able to work on an actual play during the pandemic, and I would love for you to check it out. So hop on over!
In one of my final playwriting workshops at UT Austin, we were tasked to complete just the first page of 10 different scripts that we had always wanted to write, but had never gotten around to starting. For one of my plays, I chose a dark and subversive version of "The Frog Prince," one of my favorite fairytales from childhood.
As school ended and the pandemic raged on, one of my colleagues Minghao Tu and I challenged each other to actually complete one of the scripts we had begun in that workshop. A few months later, we both had complete drafts, and a few months after that, I was lucky to get some interest in The Frog Prince from one of my favorite Austin theatre companies, Jarrott Productions. They'll be releasing a world-premiere audio version of my script on August 1st (or as we like to call it, Frogust 1st), and if you're in Austin, you can even attend a live (outside) listening party at the beloved Butterfly Bar at The Vortex. Tickets are free if you RSVP, which you can do right here.
Check out Jarrott Productions' website for more info, including our incredible cast, crew, and design team. Despite not being a physical production, there are so many cool features, from the comprehensive sound design to an original score and evocative caricatures of each character. Endless thanks to David Jarrott, Will Douglas, and the rest of the gang for giving me an actual show during a time when those opportunities are very few and far between. We're so excited to unveil this to the world!
My play The Amphibians is a Semi-Finalist for New Works Festival 2021, produced by the Garry Marshall Theatre in Burbank!
From this list, five Finalists will be chosen for virtual readings on September 24th, 25th, and 26th. It's always a good feeling to make it past the first round of reviews, and you can check out all of the Semi-Finalists here.
Congrats to all of the others, and big thanks to the team at Garry Marshall!
My short play "A Seed" is in the Top 30 for the 46th Annual Samuel French Off Off Broadway Short Play Festival! Normally, this would mean an in-person week of readings for all of the scripts, followed by six winners published in an anthology by Concord Theatricals. But as the American theatre world is slowly coming out of COVID, everything is going to stay virtual for a little bit. I know I've said it before, but it means the world to get these kinds of opportunities while the art form remains digital.
The OOB Festival will be announcing its six winners via Zoom on Thursday, August 12th, so be sure to check the website for details on how to register. In the meantime, you can read more about the play, as well as an interview with yours truly, at this link. And you can download the script in its entirety over at the New Play Exchange.
Thanks so much to Samuel French and Concord Theatricals for the opportunity, and big congrats to the other playwrights! Excited to check out everyone's work.
The Alpine Fellowship is a charitable foundation based in London that supports, commissions, and showcases artists, writers, academics, and playwrights at all stages of their career. Every year, they host an international symposium where everyone gathers to present their work. This year's event will be in Fjällnäs, Sweden, and a couple of days ago, I found out that I've been shortlisted for the foundation's Theatre Prize!
To apply, all interested playwrights were asked to propose a script inspired by the theme of "untamed – on wilderness and civilization." Of the 30 shortlisted writers, one of us will receive a commission and be invited to the symposium to hear their new play performed in August. There are a lot of talented folks on this list and—as is the case with any playwriting conference/competition—it's anyone's game, so it feels good just to be considered.
Thanks to the Alpine Fellowship for considering my work, and best of luck to all the playwrights involved! Check out the whole list here.
Later this month, my play The Amphibians is getting another developmental reading, this time through Pegasus PlayLab, the new-play development program at University of Central Florida!
The reading is virtual, and although we won't all physically be in the same space together, it means a lot to me that the script is getting developed in Florida, the state where I (mostly) grew up and, more importantly, the state where the play takes place. The Amphibians' setting of New Port Richey (also my hometown) is only a couple hours from UCF.
Directed by the great Ingrid De Sanctis and featuring Anita Bennett, Maddy La Roche, Tori Micaletti, and Alexandra Borsellino, The Amphibians has two performances: Friday, June 18th and Saturday, June 19th. Both shows are at 7:30 p.m. EST. Click here for pay-what-you-can tickets and more info on the show.
A big thanks to UCF for the opportunity, and I hope to see you there!
Back when the COVID-19 pandemic first reared its ugly head and the immediate future of theatre was in question, I was lucky enough to start working on a project with one of my mentors from grad school, the wonderful KJ Sanchez. Now, over a year later, the first incarnation of that project has come to fruition.
Aptly titled Un Año, the performance is one part documentary and two parts immersive theatre experience—a realistic, ritualistic look back on what can only be described as one hell of a year. There will be dance, music, mask work, and interviews conducted by myself and fellow writers/grad-school colleagues Rachel Heng, Kim Tran, Mason Rosenthal, and Jess Shoemaker. A co-production between KJ's company American Records, Salvage Vanguard Theater, and UT Austin's Department of Theatre and Dance, Un Año goes up at the Rogge Ranch House in Austin, Texas on May 28th, 29th, and 30th. Click here for tickets.
A big victory toast for the return of in-person theatre, and a big thank-you to KJ for having me aboard!
This past month has seen lot of really exciting developments with the two podcasts I co-host, The Losers' Club: A Stephen King Podcast and Halloweenies: A Horror Franchise Podcast.
First and foremost, both shows are now on the podcast network of Bloody Disgusting, one of the highest-respected authorities in horror around. We've followed so many of their series and journalistic coverage for years, so we're incredibly fortunate to be there. Click here for The Losers' Club's announcement and here for Halloweenies.
More recently, The Losers' Club received shoutouts from three horror luminaries. On Shudder's The Last Drive-in With Joe Bob Briggs, Joe Bob and Darcy The Mail Girl awarded us the Silver Bolo Award for excellence in horror media.
And much to our disbelief, the King himself gave us some pretty flabbergasting recognition on Twitter.
Pretty cool, huh? Joe Bob and Stephen King have been such influential figures in my journey with horror ever since I started consuming the stuff, so these past few weeks have been in a trip. A big thanks to them (and Darcy), and a big thanks to you for listening!