There isn’t an official beginning to the 2015 – 2016 season on Broadway, so I’m picking the week after the Tony Awards, the week ending June 14, 2015, as the new season. Since my last blog entry over 6 months ago, I’ve been very busy learning as much as I can about the business of theater. I just finished a weekend at the CTI Summer Theater Workshop at the Eugene O’Neill Center in Waterford, Connecticut. It is where many writers, actors, directors, have made an early visit along their journey to the Broadway stage.
My fellow new producers and I had three days of intensive training in the development of plays and musicals for commercial productions. We were able to see early-stage development readings of one play, “End of Shift” by Jenny Connell Davis, and one musical, “ZM” by Mark Hollmann and Greg Kotis. We practiced pitched these plays to an audience of established theater professionals and gained insight and awareness of the close-knit community we are a part of. These are two plays to watch this upcoming year and next.
The O’Neill considers itself “the launchpad of the American Theater”, and I believe the description is well on-the-mark. Playwrights whose work is accepted and read at the O’Neill are provided the opportunity to propel themselves into the theatrical firmament by having audiences, producers, and investors experience a new work they are inspired to bring to life in front of a wider audience.