Archive for May, 2011

Well that time of year is upon us again. The time when playwrights, actors and theatre enthusiasts all flock to the desert to be the first to witness ground-breaking new works as they develop.

From July 11- 24 Phoenix Theatre’s campus in Downtown Phoenix will host the fourteenth annual Hormel New Works Festival. The festival will highlight new works in their development stages and give patrons an opportunity to see a play’s creative process from the first table through a staged reading. This year’s staged readings include:

  • Tropical Heat by Rich Orloff
  • Reykjavik by Philip Dawkins
  • The Penis Eulogy by Daniel Cahill
  • Dinner on the Inside by Christian Krauspe

Plays are screened and selected by a committee consisting of professional directors, actors and dramaturges from Phoenix Theatre and graduate students from the Arizona State University Playwriting Program.

The New Works Festival has typically been done over the course of four weeks in the summer and only occurred on the weekends. This year, Pasha Yamotahari‎, Resident Dramaturge, and Robert Kolby Harper, Associate Artistic Director, have restructured the event to last a duration of two weeks and provide patrons more of a festival experience with all-day activities on Saturdays and Sundays.

During the event, Phoenix Theatre also hosts the Second Draft Series, a play development initiative designed to give a fast track process for plays to be developed and ready for submission to New Works Festivals.

The festival will include the 24 Hour Theatre Project on Sunday, August 1at 7pm. It’s the full theatre process on fast forward.  Patrons will see four to five ten-minute one-acts go from conception to production in twenty-four hours.

Developed by the ASU School of Theatre and Film, Phoenix Theatre is also hosting the staged readings of The Centennial Plays as part of the New Works Festival. The works will be produced at ASU in October.

Harper elaborates, “This year the Hormel New Works Festival will be more exciting than ever. Over two weekends, we are hosting 4 staged readings, 2 sit down readings, a short play festival featuring Arizona themed content and a 24 hour theatre event. It’s going to be the hottest event this summer.”

Tickets are on sale now at or by calling the box office at 602.254.2154. Tickets for each staged reading will be $10 each and a VIP pass will be available for $75. This pass will includes:

– Unlimited entries to all New Works Festival Staged Readings
– Entry to the 24 Hr Theatre Project
– Entry to the ASU Shorts
– Entry to both Playwrights Forums
– Exclusive Invitation to the First Table Reads
– Lanyard indicating your VIP Status!
– New Works Festival T-shirt

A full schedule of events, synopses and playwright information for the staged readings can be found at

***This blog will be the best place to get ALL of the updates about the festival including exclusive interviews and behind the scenes access. Check back here and check back often***