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THE NEW WORKS INITIATIVE (NWI) is an Artist-in-Residence program and developmental platform in the Department of Theatre and Dance in Montclair State University’s College of the Arts. NWI’s mission is to bring together established and emerging playwrights, composers, choreographers, theatre-makers, and professional directors with MSU theatre students to explore adventurous theatrical works.
The New Works Initiative is made possible through the generous support of Bob and Holly Gregory.
Featuring a new commissioned play by Jeff Talbott
Directed by Wes Grantom
Jeff Talbott’s play The Submission was the inaugural recipient of the Laurents/Hatcher Award and was produced off-Broadway by MCC Theater; it went on to receive the Outer Critics Circle John Gassner Award for New American Play. The Gravedigger’s Lullaby will receive its world-premiere production in March 2017 off-Broadway with TACT at Theatre Row. Three Rules for the Dragon and A Public Education were both finalists for the O’Neill Playwrights Conference.
His plays (including i, Elliot, All the Stars in the Midnight Sky and How to Build a City) have received workshops and readings at MCC Theater, Premiere Stages, Chicago Shakespeare, Pioneer Theatre, TACT, Crowded Outlet and Route 66. He writes musicals with composer Will Van Dyke. Their work includes: Imagine Harry (NAMT Festival of New Musicals), Wintersong (Goodspeed’s Johnny Mercer Writers Colony) and the just-completed Seven Broken Hearts. They have released an EP (A View of the River) and a single (A New Year, recorded by Annaleigh Ashford), both available on iTunes or wherever digital music is sold. Jeff is a member of TACT and graduated with honors from the Yale School of Drama. www.jefftalbott.com
Wes Grantom (Director) is thrilled to develop brand new work with Jeff Talbott after collaborations on four of this other plays. Recent directing credits include Toxic Avenger by David Bryan and Joe DiPietro at Pittsburgh CLO, Lone Star Spirits by Josh Tobiessen with Crowded Outlet, Eager to Loseby Matthew-Lee Erlbach at Ars Nova, The Cloud by Matt Moses, The Steadfast by Mat Smart, Mineby Bekah Brunstetter for Slant Theatre Project.
Wes has a number of Broadway credits as resident and associate director, working alongside James Lapine, Emma Rice, John Rando, Anthony Page and Rufus Norris. He is a recipient of multiple Drama League Fellowships, a member of Lincoln Center Directors Lab, a graduate of the University of Evansville and the Artistic Director of Crowded Outlet, based in Queens.
People got it together to write the Constitution, so why can't two student action groups get a single sentence on paper to form a charter? Finding the right words can be the hardest thing in the world. Two stories. One story. Their story. Our story. A thorny comic drama about getting things started.
New York Workshop Reading
Tuesday, September 19, 2017
L. Howard Fox Theatre
Department of Theatre and Dance