ROSE TO RECEIVE $25,000 PRIZE AND WORLD PREMIERE PRODUCTION
SECOND PLACE WINNERS BRENT ASKARI & CHRISTINA QUINTANA TO RECEIVE $5,000 EACH
(Pittsfield, MA– January 29, 2019) Barrington Stage Company (BSC), the award-winning theatre in Downtown Pittsfield, MA under the leadership of Artistic Director Julianne Boyd, announced today that Stacey Rose is the inaugural winner of The Bonnie and Terry Burman New Play Award, a new national play contest at BSC. Rose will be awarded $25,000 and her play America v. 2.1: The Sad Demise & Eventual Extinction of the American Negro will receive a world premiere production at BSC.
“There are few words for how honored I am to be the inaugural recipient of the Bonnie & Terry Burman New Play Award,” said Stacey Rose. “Having the play produced, as well, meets and exceeds my wildest dreams for the world premiere of this play.”
The play is described as follows:
Set in the not too distant future, America v. 2.1 is a day in the life of a troupe of Black actors who are charged with re-enacting the revised history of the once-thriving American Negro. It quickly becomes a day of reckoning as the troupe is forced to face the parallels their own lives draw to the lives of the very Negroes whose stories they are compelled to tell.
The Second-Place winners, Brent Askari and Christina Quintana, will each receive $5,000 and a developmental staged reading.
In American Underground by Brent Askari, an interracial couple enjoys a visit from their college-aged son when a young Muslim woman arrives at their back door looking for safe passage via a new Underground Railroad. This riveting thriller takes us inside a stark vision of an unapologetic America.
In Citizen Scientist by Christina Quintana, Kian, an actuary, and Neema, an astronomer, meet exploring the starfield for exoplanets and battling their recent losses. Together, they discover the planet Kepler-64b and learn what it means to be present here on Earth.
“I want to thank Bonnie and Terry Burman for recognizing the importance of discovering and supporting vital new voices in the American Theatre,” said Artistic Director Julianne Boyd. “Barrington Stage is thrilled to bring to life this summer Stacey Rose’s play, America v. 2.1: The Sad Demise & Eventual Extinction of the American Negro, a provocative, uncompromising look at Black Americans in post-apocalyptic America, and both Brent Askari and Christina Quintana share Stacey’s sense of urgency in telling stories that need to be heard now.”
The winning plays were chosen out of 461 plays that were submitted, which were culled down to 70 semi-finalists, and then 7 finalists. In addition to the three winning plays, the other finalists for the Burman Award included Steal Her Bones by Thomas Gibbons; EIGHT NIGHTS by Jennifer Maisel; 2144 SOUTH ST. by Karina Billini; and (end of message) by Laura Jacqmin.
Final play selections were read by the Burman New Play Contest Panel comprised of Julianne Boyd, Artistic Director of Barrington Stage Company; Ken Cerniglia, Literary Manager & Dramaturg at Disney Theatrical Group; Natasha Sinha, Director of Artistic Programs at Signature Theatre; and Mark St. Germain, Playwright and BSC Associate Artist.
STACEY ROSE hails from Elizabeth, NJ and Charlotte, NC respectively. She’s an alum of the MFA program in Dramatic Writing at NYU Tisch School of the Arts. Her work has been presented at The Fire This Time Festival, The Brooklyn Generator, The Bushwick Starr Reading Series, Mosaic Theater, The Amoralists Theatre Company, Rattlestick Playwrights Theater, National Black Theatre, Pillsbury House Theatre and The Lark’s Playwrights’ Week. Stacey was a 2015-16 Dramatist Guild Fellow, a 2017-18 Playwrights’ Center Many Voices Fellow and a 2018 Sundance Theatre Lab Fellow. She is a 2018-2021 Playwrights’ Center Core Writer, a member of The Goodman Theatre’s Playwrights Unit and The Civilians R&D Group. Stacey’s work celebrates and explores Blackness, Black identity, Black history, bodypolitics and the dilemma of life as the “other.”
BRENT ASKARI is a Persian-American writer and actor living in Portland, Maine. Brent’s play Hard Cell was part of the 2017 PlayPenn development conference and is being produced as part of Geva Theatre Center’s 2018-2019 Mainstage Season. Some of his other recent plays include: Digby’s Home (Semi-finalist O’Neill Playwriting Conference, produced at Mad Horse Theatre); Cocktails and Travails (Winner of Neil Simon Festival’s National New Play Contest and produced at The Theater Project); Bending Reeds (Semi-Finalist Bay Area Playwrights Festival, Blank Stage Living Room Series). Brent was part of HBO’s New Writers Project and has written screenplays for Paramount Pictures, Marvel Films, MTV and Reveille Entertainment. Brent has acted in numerous theatrical productions across the country and is an ensemble member of Mad Horse Theatre Company. Brent also narrated the nationally syndicated children’s television program “Animal Science,” which was nominated for a national Daytime Emmy in 2014.
CHRISTINA QUINTANA (CQ) is a writer with Cuban and Louisiana roots. Her plays include: Azul (2017 Kilroys List; forthcoming World Premiere: Southern Rep, April 2019), Scissoring (INTAR; Finalist Alliance/Kendeda; now available from Dramatists Play Service), Evensong (APAC; Kilroys List Honorable Mention), Enter Your Sleep (Yale Cabaret) and The Great Lonely Roamer & The Night That Changed Everything (NYU Voices Festival). She is the recipient of fellowships from MacDowell, Playwrights Realm, Van Lier New Voices at the Lark, Queer/Art, CubaOne and Lambda Literary. Her chapbook of poetry, The Heart Wants, was released from Finishing Line Press in 2016, and her poem “She-lium” was featured on Radiolab in collaboration with Emotive Fruition. An alumnus of Youngblood at Ensemble Studio Theatre and a current WP Lab Member, she holds an MFA in Playwriting from Columbia University School of the Arts. For more, visit cquintana.com
Barrington Stage Company recently announced three productions for the Mainstage in their upcoming 25th season – Into the Woods, the musical classic by Stephen Sondheim and James Lapine; Gertrude and Claudius, a new play by Mark St. Germain; and the world premiere new musical Fall Springs, by Niko Tsakalakos and Peter Sinn Nachtrieb.
Presented on the Boyd-Quinson Mainstage, Into the Woods features music and lyrics by 13-time Tony Award winner Stephen Sondheim, a book by James Lapine (Sunday in the Park with George) and was originally directed on Broadway by James Lapine. Musical direction is by BSC Associate Artist Darren R. Cohen (BSC’s West Side Story) with direction by BSC Associate Artist Joe Calarco (BSC’s Ragtime).
Barrington Stage will also present a new play by BSC Associate Artist Mark St. Germain (Dancing Lessons, Freud’s Last Session), Gertrude and Claudius, based on the novel by John Updike, featuring direction by Julianne Boyd (BSC’s West Side Story, Company).
BSC’s 2019 Season will present the world premiere of the musical Fall Springs, featuring music and lyrics by Niko Tsakalakos (BSC’s Pool Boy), book and lyrics by Peter Sinn Nachtrieb (Boom), musical direction by Vadim Fechtner (The Royal Family) and direction by Stephen Brackett (Be More Chill).
2019 Season Passes are now on sale and available at www.barringtonstageco.org or by calling 413-236-8888 or visiting the box office (122 North Street, Pittsfield, MA 01201). Single tickets for Into the Woods, Fall Springs and Gertrude and Claudius will be available in March.
ABOUT BARRINGTON STAGE COMPANY
Barrington Stage Company (BSC) is an award-winning regional theatre located in Pittsfield, MA, in the heart of the Berkshires. Co-founded in 1995 by Artistic Director Julianne Boyd, BSC has a three-fold mission: to present top-notch, compelling work; to develop new plays and musicals; and to find fresh, bold ways of bringing new audiences into the theatre—especially young people.
Barrington Stage commissioned and produced the world premiere of Christopher Demos-Brown’s American Son, which also won the Laurents/Hatcher Award as Best New Play in 2016 and recently concluded a Broadway run, starring Kerry Washington.
Barrington Stage first garnered national attention in 2004 when it premiered William Finn and Rachel Sheinkin’s musical hit The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, which later transferred to Broadway where it won two Tony Awards. In 2009, BSC premiered Mark St. Germain’s Freud’s Last Session, which later moved Off Broadway and played for two years. St. Germain’s Becoming Dr. Ruth (which premiered at BSC as Dr. Ruth, All the Way) played Off Broadway at the Westside Theatre. BSC’s all-time record-breaking musical On the Town was originally produced at BSC in 2013 before transferring to Broadway, where it was nominated for four Tony Awards including Best Musical Revival. In 2016, Barrington Stage swept the first annual Berkshire Theatre Awards by winning 20 out of the 25 awards. In 2017, BSC produced the much-lauded revival of Stephen Sondheim and George Furth’s Company, starring Aaron Tveit. BSC has won the Best of the Berkshires Readers’ Choice for Best Live Theatre for the past two years. 2019 marks BSC’s 25th Season Anniversary.