Living Room Series



ABOUT THE LIVING ROOM SERIES 

Now in its 29th year, The Living Room Series is a New Play Development program, which embodies The Blank’s commitment to developing new work by diverse voices from both established and emerging writers. Submissions by women, playwrights of color, and other under-represented voices are strongly encouraged. The Blank is firmly committed to supporting gender parity and diversity.

The Living Room Series (LRS) takes place on Monday evenings at the 2nd Stage Theatre in Hollywood between Labor Day and Memorial Day. LRS offers a week-long rehearsal process for the playwright, director, and actors to explore and refine the play before presenting it to an audience.

The performances are minimally staged, with actors carrying scripts, and are a wonderful opportunity for the playwright to get a sense of the play’s full potential.

LIVING ROOM SERIES INFO

All performances begin at 8:00pm and take place at
The Blank’s 2nd Stage Theatre
6500 Santa Monica Blvd, Hollywood
unless otherwise noted.

For reservations click on the button below each play description.

You have the option to donate ahead of time with a credit card.  Every donation counts for both your taxes and our theatre magic.

Don’t fret, you can still make a reservation online and pay cash at the door or nothing at all. We just want you there to see a new play!

LIVING ROOM SERIES SCHEDULE


Monday November 18th

THE TROUBLED

Written by Mousa Kraish 

Directed by Asaad Kelada

A member of the PLO and a member of the IRA deal with the circumstances around them while secretly having a love affair.

Writer Bio

Mousa Kraish is a Palestinian-American actor, writer, and director from Brooklyn, New York, who can currently be seen as the mysterious genie known as The Jinn on Starz’ hit series “American Gods”. Mousa trained at the conservatory program at the Atlantic Theater Company as well as at The Barrow Group and The Public Theater’s Shakespeare Lab. In his career he has had the good fortune to work with a number of great directors including Steven Spielberg (“Munich”), Mike Nichols (“Charlie Wilson’s War), Justin Lin (“Finishing the Game” and “Fast and Furious”) and Greg Mottola, for whom Mousa appeared in the Judd Apatow- produced runaway summer hit “Superbad.” He played the cook Habib on the AMC series “Feed the Beast” opposite David Schwimmer and Jim Sturgess; other television appearances include “Transparent”, “Designated Survivor”, “Madam Secretary”, “Homeland”, “Chuck”, “Covert Affairs”, “Blue Bloods”, “Parenthood”, “Arrested Development”, and “Men of a Certain Age”. His film credits include “The Day the Earth Stood Still” and “You Don’t Mess with the Zohan”, as well as the independent features “King of California”, “Super Zeroes”, “Overnight”, and “Echo Park”. Mousa has also written and directed several short films and plays, both of which have appeared in numerous festivals and his portrait photography has been exhibited in Los Angeles. His short film “The Last Deli in Brooklyn” has appeared in the HollyShorts Film Festival, The Coney Island Film Festival and Dances with Films Film Festival in the last few years.

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Monday December 2nd

FALLING SLANTED SAD & CRAZY

Written by Chelsea Sutton

Directed by Katie Witkowski

 A dark comedy about a kidnapping gone bad, dead crows, and Twinkies. In a feed shop in Jurupa Valley, California, somewhere along the 91 freeway, Kara is trying to find her own place in the world – which is definitely not here.

Writer Bio: Chelsea Sutton is a fiction writer, playwright, and screenwriter, and a 2016 PEN America Emerging Voices Fellow. Her plays have been finalists for the O’Neill Playwrights, PlayPenn, and Seven Devils Conferences, the Ingram New Works Lab, the Stanley Drama, Woodward/Newman Drama, Reva Shiner Comedy, and International UNIMA Young Writer awards, a semi-finalist for the Bay Area Playwrights Festival, and a Humanitas PlayLA Award Winner. She was a creative writing artist in residence at Willapa Bay AiR and Tin House Writers Conference in 2017 and a 2018 Sewanee Writers Conference Playwright Fellow. She was nominated for a Stage Raw Award for her play Wood Boy Dog Fish, written for Rogue Artists Ensemble, which recently received its second production in the inaugural season at the Garry Marshall Theatre. In 2017, she co-wrote with Lisa Dring the critically acclaimed, immersive Kaidan Project: Walls Grow Thin for Rogue Artists Ensemble. She is currently working on a short story collection, Curious Monsters, which was a Runner-Up for the 2018 Madeline P. Plonsker Emerging Writers Residency Prize, and her first novel. She is a graduate of the College of Creative Studies at UC Santa Barbara and holds an MFA in Creative Writing from UC Riverside. Chelseasutton.com / @crsutton (instagram) / @wthcoffeespoons (twitter)

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Monday December 9th

MONICA: THIS PLAY IS NOT ABOUT MONICA LEWINSKY

Written by Dianne Nora

Directed by Christopher James Raymond

Through a series of scenes between Monica Lewinsky and different imagined lovers, this play asks what the cost of intimacy is, how we reckon with our past selves, and what we talk about when we talk about Other Women.

Writer Bio

Dianne Nora is a playwright, theatre scholar, and comedy writer who lives and works in Chicago, Brooklyn, and Dublin, Ireland. Her full-length plays include Notes on Arrival and Departure, Monica: This Play Is Not About Monica Lewinsky (semi-finalist for the O’Neill National Playwrights Conference 2018), Julie (25F), Western Country, In Rooms Such As These, Everybody’s Legs, Wasps (semi-finalist for the O’Neill National Playwrights Conference 2014), Ye That Dwell In Dust, and Prodigal. She recently assisted her mentor Tracy Letts on the world premiere of his play The Minutes, a finalist for the 2018 Pulitzer Prize in Drama. She is co-writing a parody of the Bible with Scott Dikkers, founding editor of The Onion, along with a satirical biography of the entrepreneur Elon Musk, anticipated from Grand Central Publishing this fall. BA: NYU; MPhil: Trinity College Dublin; MFA: Columbia University School of the Arts.

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Monday December 16th

GARGOYLES

Written by Diana Burbano

Directed by Jesus Reyes

A retired silent film star, moves herself and her teenage daughter to an isolated tropical island. Their calm existence is upended when a wounded soldier moves into their village.

Writer Bio

Diana Burbano, a Colombian immigrant, is an Equity actor, a playwright and a teaching artist at South Coast Repertory and Breath of Fire Latina Theatre Ensemble. Policarpa, Semi-finalist Eugene O’Neill Playwrights Festival 2018, Finalist Bay Area Playwrights Festival 2018, Oregon Shakespeare Festival Brown Swan lab 2017, Drama League Rough Draft series May 2017, Honorable Mention, Jane Chambers Award 2017, Parsnip Ship 2017. Fabulous Monsters, Latinx Play Festival, San Diego Rep 2017, Festival51 2016 winner Picture me Rollin’, 35th William Inge Festival, Inkfest/2cents, Silueta, (about Ana Mendieta), with Tom and Chris Shelton, Caliban’s Island (TYA) 2017 Headwaters New Play Festival at Creede Repertory (Published by YouthPLAYS). Linda was written for the 365 Women a Year project and has been featured in more that 20 festivals over the last year, including Center Theatre Group’s community library series. She was a writer for Center Theatre Group’s Chisme y Queso series, Rogue Artists Plummer Park project and Kaiser Permanente’s Educational touring show. She has a commission with Alter Theatre in San Rafael and is part of Center Theatre Group’s Writers Workshop for 2018-2019.

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Monday January 20th (MLK DAY) 

UMOJA

Written by LaDarrion Williams 

Directed by Nancy Davis 

Synopsis: 

A group of young college students set out to create their own black excellence group called “UMOJA” on a predominately white Christian college campus. But when it is sidelined with racial tension, these young people must stand up and fight for what they believe in even when they have to deal with some dark secrets of their own.

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Monday January 27th

THE RULE OF THIRDS 

Written by Leland Frankel 

Synopsis: 

Still haunted by the death of her Israeli lover, a Lebanese-American film-maker discovers disturbing photographs that throw her perspective of him into question.

Writer Bio:

Leland Frankel is an award-winning playwright and director. He has studied at the UCLA School of Theater, Film, and Television(BA in Playwriting) as well as the American Repertory Theater Institute at Harvard University (MLA in Dramaturgy). His plays have been produced with The Fountain Theatre, The Festival For New American Musicals, Celebration Theatre, and many more. In addition to his work as a playwright, Leland is also a director for screen and stage, a screenwriter, and a lyricist. His short films have been featured in the National Film Festival for Talented Youth, International Student Media Festival, and Harvard Westlake Film Festival, among others. As a writer for film and television, Leland is represented by Jordan Bayer of Original Artists Agency, based out ofBeverly Hills, CA. Leland was born and raised in New York City. When he is not forcing himself to work, he can be found cooking lousy meals, swimming, and streaming far too much HBO GO. 

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Monday February 3rd

THE POWDER OF SYMPATHY 

Written by Steven Shade 

Directed by Bree Pavey 

Synopsis: 

Two young men from two different socioeconomic backgrounds–one a recently-released juvenile offender and the other a once-promising disabled musician—in recovering from their separate traumas, share a mysterious sympathetic connection which yields unexpected results for both of them.

Writer Bio:

STEVE SHADE, the author of numerous plays /adaptations as well as a dozen study guides for a range of classical and contemporary plays, has directed over 75 productions with an emphasis on classical texts and new work. For ten years, he produced a successful, grant-funded outreach program. An Associate Professor of Theatre Arts, his recent work has focused on performance and devising work with incarcerated youth as Theatre-Artist-in-Residence of the Blank Slate Project in the Gateway Program in San Bernardino Juvenile Corrections for which he created Lessons From the Masters, At Crossroads, Other People’s Losses, Pentimenti, All That Glitters, The Place We/ Don’t Call Home among others. His play At a Certain Age was a finalist in Chicago’s Pride Films and Plays Great Gay Playwriting Competition and Passing was the winner of the 2016 West Hollywood One Pride Play Reading Festival. His work is anthologized in the Smith & Kraus Best Stage Monologues for Women. A graduate of The Playwrights Workshop at the University of Iowa, with postgraduate study at LAMDA, he is a member of the Dramatists Guild and a Los Angeles Ovation Awards voting member.

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Monday February 24th

VOCAL LESSONS

Written by Helen Kantor 

Synopsis: 

Twenty years on, two sisters who once staged revolution in a riot grrrl band must contend with losing and finding their voices.

Writer Bio:

An emerging playwright, trained as a screenwriter in graduate school at UCLA. I cut my teeth on regional theater in the Bay Area, explored visual storytelling via the big screen, and delved into word-smithing poems, and eventually a novel. I’m a California native, an Angelino, and deeply committed to living a literary and creative life.

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Monday,  March 9th

HOW BLOOD GO 

Written by Lisa Langford 

Directed by Michael A. Shepperd 

Synopsis: 

How Blood Go opens with Quinntasia, an African-American woman who takes her doctor’s advice seriously: she’s lost weight and become a diet and exercise fanatic. Just when she’s ready to introduce her wellness program, Quinntessentials, to the world, she learns that her healthy body is not the product of her hard work, but of a futuristic experimental device, implanted without her consent, that makes her appear White in healthcare settings. When Quinn discovers this, she must decide if she’s willing to give up her Blackness to receive fair and equal treatment from the world around her.

Writer Bio:

Lisa Langford earned a B.A. in Modern European History from Harvard University. She studied acting at The Juilliard School and completed her theatre training at The American Repertory Theater Institute for Advanced Theater Training at Harvard. As an actress, Lisa has worked in television, film, and theatre, earning a Lucille Lortel nomination and Off-Broadway Encore Magazine’s “Taking Off” award for best female performance.As a writer, Lisa has worked with Dr. Maya Angelou at Hallmark in the development of Dr. Angelou’s line of social expressions, “Life Mosaics.” She received her M.F.A. in playwriting from Cleveland State University. Her play, The Art of Longing, was a finalist for the Leslie Scalapino Award for Innovative Women Performance Writers and a semifinalist for the Eugene O’Neill Theater Center’s 2017 National Playwrights Conference and was produced in the Fall of 2018 at Cleveland Public Theatre. Lisa was also a finalist in NYC’s The Playwrights Realm’s ScratchpadSeries and selected for the National New Play Network’s Cross Pollination Project.Her ten-minute play, The Bomb, about the Black Lives Matter movement, published in the anthology, Black Lives, Black Words. She is a member of Dobama Theatre’s Playwrights’ Gym.

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Monday March 16th 

TABLESCAPE

Written by Jeanette Farr

Synopsis: 

Pratt and Joe want a closed adoption, but the teenage birth mother has other ideas, forcing hidden truths about relationships, parenthood, and politics.

Writer Bio:

Jeanette Farr’s plays have been produced around the world including the Edinburgh Festival Fringe in Scotland. Her work has been recognized by the Nevada Arts Council, The Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival, and the Association for Theatre in Higher Education. She has served on the executive board with the Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival, responding to new works, and received the Kennedy Center Gold Medallion for 2019. In addition, she has served as a reader for the various awards through the Michael Kanin Playwriting Awards program. Some highlights in playwriting have included, Playwright in Residence with Tofte Lake Center (with Liz Engelman), WordBRIDGE Playwrights’ Lab, and Theatricum Botanicum Seedlings Series; Playwright in Residence with Orange County School of the Arts (OCSA), Tennessee Williams Scholar at the Sewanee Writers Conference. Jeanette has had plays performed at Actors’ Theatre of Louisville (A Growing Problem) and was a Heideman Award Finalist (My Life as a Circus Baby), and City Theatre, Miami – Winter Shorts Festival (Fulfillment Center). A Central Valley California native, Jeanette has been commissioned by Sierra Repertory Theatre to adapt Yoshiko Uchida’s children’s story, Journey to Topaz for touring; Her play, Blue Roses, based on the life of Rose Williams won the international playwriting competition for Prospect Theatre Project. Jeanette’s plays can be found at Original Works Publishing, Dramatic Publishing, Smith & Kraus, 10-minute-plays.com, and The New Play Exchange. Jeanette currently lives in Los Angeles where she has written, produced, and directed new plays with SkyPilot Theatre Company, Moving Arts, Scribe Stages, and The Secret Rose Theatre. Jeanette is a proud member of The Antaeus Playwrights’ Lab, The Playwrights Union and the Dramatists Guild of America.  www.jeanettefarr.com

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Monday, March 30th 

THE NOTHING THAT IS SOMETHING  

Written by J. Joseph Cox 

Synopsis: 

When a supposedly brain-dead patient returns to the land of the living, Dr. Adilene Reynolds’ entire career is put in jeopardy.

Writer Bio:

Joseph Cox’s full-length plays include Koalas (16th Street Theater), St. Paulie’s Delight (Great Plains Theatre Conference, Dayton Playhouse FutureFest, Playhouse on the Square), and Thirst (Cold Basement Dramatics). His short-form plays have garnered numerous awards and have been produced internationally. His work has been developed by the Seven Devils Playwrights Conference, The Blank Theatre, Palm Beach Dramaworks, Chicago Dramatists, Something Marvelous, and Portland Stage Company among others. He has been a finalist for the O’Neill National Playwrights Conference, and The Princess Grace Award and recently won Playhouse on the Square’s New Play Competition . He is a member of the Dramatists Guild of America and an alumnus of Lawrence University and the Second City Writing Program. He is originally from Iowa.

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LIVING ROOM SERIES SUBMISSION GUIDELINES

The submission period for the 2019-20 season will be open in July 25th-August 13th, 2019.

All submissions must be done via Submittable.

SUBMISSION ELIGIBILITY

  • Submission must be full-length (we regret that one-acts or ten-minutes will not be considered at this time).
  • Submission must not have received a full production. Submissions that have received full productions, even if they have undergone significant post-production revisions, will not be considered. The Blank considers staged readings and academic productions exceptions to this rule.
  • Playwright may only submit one script per submission period.
  • If a script was declined for a prior season, please note what significant revisions have been made (in your Artistic Statement).
  • Materials must be submitted as PDFs. For information on how to create a pdf, please visit: http://www.wikihow.com/Create-PDF-Files.