America-In-Play is excited to be joined by Elizabeth Bojsza on their upcoming endeavour – The Recovery Project. Due to neglect and disregard, an extraordinary number of original American drama and performance fashioned between the American Revolution and World War I has disappeared. Inspired by this loss and America-In-Play’s development of a process for generating new American plays from old ones, Artistic Director Lynn M. Thomson conceived the Recovery Project. Through the LMDA Residency grant program, Elizabeth Bojsza is now employed as Lead Dramaturg on this project, which will commission two plays from theatre artists - one as a imagining of what a lost original might be and a second play, as a modern text, inspired by that original.
While ultimately the project will span three years, we are now initiating the first two phases. The project begins with Elizabeth identifying plays that cannot be found and, through conversations with playwrights, matching each of those authors with a missing text. The second phase involves in-depth period research, during which Elizabeth, with a dramaturgical team she recruits, will take on the role of play archeologists: piecing together what remains of each play’s existence from reviews, firsthand accounts, similar plays, and other primary sources. At the end of this phase, the commissioned playwrights will start to write their first play.
This April and May 2013, Bricolage Production Company will hold its first annual In the Raw Festival, focusing on playwrights and the development of new works. The Festival will be lead by dramaturg Annie DiMario.
Expanded from Bricolage’s ongoing In the Raw series, this year’s 5-week festival format will give three playwrights the opportunity to work closely with Annie to revise, explore, and solidify a new work. Each of the selected three plays will receive a week-long workshop with a director, the dramaturg, and professional actors. The workshop will culminate in two public readings at Bricolage Theater in downtown Pittsburgh, followed by audience response sessions.
Bricolage’s goal in working with Annie is to celebrate and cultivate new plays by local playwrights, incubate talent in their region, deepen their relationships with local artists, and expose their audience to the process of play development.