Meet Our Authors

Miriam Raiken-Kolb

Miriam Raiken-Kolb Composer/lyricist and librettist Miriam Raiken-Kolb is a native of Buffalo and a graduate of Oberlin College. While pursuing an acting career in NYC she began to write music--including the first songs for a full-length musical, Sara Crewe, which was premiered by the Needham Community Theatre in 2007 and is published by Dramatic Publishing Inc. Other works for the musical theatre include a full-length adaptation of another famous Burnett work, The Secret Garden, published by YouthPLAYS, and a one-act musical, two-character play about Emily Dickinson, I Dwell in Possibility. She has also composed an adaptation of Lewis Carroll’s Alice Through the Looking Glass. Raiken-Kolb is currently working on a new musical, Precious Bane, based on the celebrated novel by Mary Webb. She and her collaborator Geralyn Horton have been developing this work under the auspices of the Advanced Writers’ Lab, a writers’ workshop that meets at the Berklee School of Music in Boston, MA. She lives in Somerville, Massachusetts, with husband Roger Kolb and daughter Gwen.

Gregory Ramos

Gregory Ramos Gregory Ramos is a Resident Director and Chair of the Department of Theatre at The University of Vermont where he teaches directing, playwriting and diversity in the U.S. American Theater. He has directed numerous professional and university productions, including Into the Woods and Unnecessary Farce at Saint Michael's Playhouse and Time Stands Still and Mothers and Sons for Vermont Stage. Gregory has performed his solo plays, Border Stories and When We Danced at venues around the country. His plays A Visit from San Cristobal and Our Father's House were performed in the New Play Reading Series at Company of Angels in Los Angeles. He studied acting at Playwrights Horizons and with Academy Award winner Ellen Burstyn. Gregory is a member of Actor's Equity Association and the Lincoln Center Directors Lab. MFA, Playwriting, UCLA. Board memberships include Vermont Shakespeare Festival.

Daniel Rashid

Daniel Rashid Daniel Rashid is an actor, writer, director & producer. Recent acting credits include Beast Beast (Sundance/SXSW), Atlanta (FX), Paper Girls (Amazon) and Fear the Walking Dead (AMC). Daniel has written & directed a number of short films & music videos, which have played at film festivals across the US. He created the YouTube sketch comedy channel Giggle Break, and co-created the online immersive show Into the Mist. Website: www.danielrashid.com // Instagram: @danielrashid // Twitter: @danielsrashid

Andy AA Rassler

Andy AA Rassler Andrea (Andy) Rassler has been involved in various aspects of theatre all her life. With roots in community theatre, Andy has acted and directed in many venues both in her home state of Minnesota and in North Carolina. She has held the position of theatre instructor and director at Northwest Cabarrus High School for most of her teaching career. Playwriting began for Andy as a natural outgrowth of acting and directing and she has seen local, regional, and international productions of her work realized. Her hope is to continue exploring all aspects of theatre, as it is her love. Andy lives in Concord, NC and is married with two children.

Michael Reilly

Michael Reilly is a composer, arranger and music director specializing in youth theatre. The Wind in the Willows is his most recent collaboration which premiered in 2010 at Theatre Palisades. Michael is finishing his Masters of Music in Conducting at Cal State LA and received his BS in Performance Studies from Northwestern University.

Randy Reinholz

Randy Reinholz Randy Reinholz, an enrolled member of the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma, co-founder and producing artistic director emeritus of Native Voices at the Autry, is an award-winning producer, director, actor, activist and playwright. Reinholz has produced more than 30 scripts and directed over 75 plays in the United States, Australia, England, Mexico and Canada. Off the Rails, his bawdy and irreverent adaptation of Shakespeare's Measure for Measure had its World Premiere and sold-out run at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival. A tenured professor at San Diego State University, he has served as Head of Acting, Director of the School of Theatre, Television, and Film, and Director of Community Engagement and Innovation for the College of Professional Studies and Fine Arts. Awards: Ellen Stewart Award for Career Achievement in Professional Theatre, Playwrights Arena's Lee Melville Award, LA Drama Critics Circle Gordon Davidson Award, SDSU's Outstanding Faculty Award, Los Angeles City/County Native American Indian Commission and City of Los Angeles Award for Outstanding Contribution to the Los Angeles Community. 

Mabelle Reynoso

Mabelle Reynoso Mabelle Reynoso is a San Diego-based multidisciplinary storyteller and teaching artist. Her plays have been performed in traditional and non-traditional theatre spaces including classrooms, community centers and correctional facilities. She is co-host of the podcast Hey Playwright and leads TuYo Theatre's Pa' Letras, a new play development workshop for emerging Latinx playwrights. Her play ¡Lotería: Game On! was a ReImagine: New Plays in TYA grant recipient. Mabelle has a BFA from New York University, an MFA from the School of Visual Arts and is currently pursuing her PhD in Education for Social Justice at the University of San Diego. Mabelle is a member of the Dramatists Guild, TYA/USA and the Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators. She was proudly born in Tijuana, Mexico. More at www.mabellereynoso.com

Robin Rice

Robin Rice Robin Rice's plays have been produced world-wide from New York to London, South Africa to Mongolia, and fringe festivals from Canada to Ohio to Edinburgh. Recently, Alice in Black and White, Play Nice! and Pecking Order ran Off-Broadway in NYC; Women w/o Walls premiered in Hollywood; Everyday Edna Mae was nominated for excellence in playwriting by Planet Connections Theatre Festivity. Publishers include French, Original Works, Next Stage, YouthPLAYS, Smith & Kraus, Dramatic and Applause. Honors include New Millennium, StageWrite, O'Neill (semi-finalist), Finborough, Goshen Peace Play and Smith Prize. Residencies include Lark, Cleveland Public, Will Geer Theatricum Botanicum, Phoenix Theatre (AZ), Last Frontier, ATHE, Sarah Lawrence, Metropolitan Ensemble and Great Plains. Member: Dramatists Guild (designated "lifetime member"), ShopTalk (NYC), Manhattan Oracles, 29th Street Playwrights Collective, International Centre for Women Playwrights and League of Professional Theatre Women. www.RobinRicePlaywright.com

Tyler J. Rinne

Tyler J. Rinne Tyler J. Rinne is a writer, director, artist, actor and podcast host, among other things. Writing credits include the plays Forest Paths, The Rest of the West and The Last Ticket out of Thistleberry Thicket and various short stories published here and there. He has directed over forty plays and appeared onstage in over a dozen. His comic strip Pandora's Boxer Briefs takes a look backstage at a small theatre troupe, and his podcast Film Foil dissects the past 100 years of movies. Visit him at tylerjrinne.com.

Alvaro Saar Rios

Alvaro Saar Rios Alvaro Saar Rios is a Texican playwright living in Chicago. His plays have been performed in New York City, Mexico City, Hawaii, Chicago, St. Louis, Milwaukee and all over Texas. He has received playwriting commissions from various organizations, including Kennedy Center, Chicago Children's Theatre, First Stage, Houston Grand Opera, Honolulu Theatre for Youth, Purple Rose Theatre Company, Houston Community College, Zoological Society of Milwaukee and Omaha's Rose Theater. His award-winning play Luchadora! is published by Dramatic Publishing Inc. Other plays include On The Wings of a Mariposa, The History of Mexicans in 10 Minutes, and Carmela Full of Wishes, an adaptation of Matt de la Peña's New York Times Bestseller. He is currently adapting Pam Muñoz Ryan's Esperanza Rising. Alvaro holds an MFA in Writing for the Stage and Screen from Northwestern University. He is a Resident Playwright at Chicago Dramatists and Playwright-In-Residence at Milwaukee's First Stage. Alvaro is also a proud veteran of the US Army and an Associate Professor at UW-Milwaukee. www.alvarosaarrios.com.  Twitter/Instagram: @realCrazyMex

Spencer Robelen

Spencer Robelen Spencer Robelen is a New York-based composer, violinist, and playwright. Whether he's writing chamber music, a song, a play, or an electronica piece comprised of fart sounds, Spencer covers a large spectrum of emotions with his work. He holds a B.A. in Music Theory and Composition from the University of Miami's Frost School of Music and an M.F.A. in Musical Theatre Writing from New York University's Tisch School of the Arts. Additionally, Spencer is a noted SpongeBob SquarePants scholar due to his writings on the history and analysis of the franchise. Unfortunately, this accolade has failed to garner him any prestigious awards or fellowships. Check out his work at www.spencerrobelen.com!

Greg Romero

Greg Romero Greg Romero is a playwright/theatre artist, originally from Louisiana. His plays, site-specific projects, experimental live events and sound-art collaborations have been presented in New York, Chicago, Philadelphia, Phoenix, Dallas, Austin, Denver, Baltimore, Washington DC, Louisville, New Orleans, as well as internationally in Canada, the United Kingdom, Jamaica, Switzerland and other awesome places. Romero has twice been a finalist for the Heideman Award, a semi-finalist for the Princess Grace Award, nominated for the F. Otto Haas Award for an Emerging Theater Artist and was selected as the first-ever Resident Writer of the ArtsEdge Residency, created by The Kelly Writers House and The University of Pennsylvania. He inaugurated the Philadelphia Dramatists Center/Plays & Players Playwriting Residency and is an alum of the WordBRIDGE Playwrights Laboratory, the Midwest Dramatists Conference, the William Inge New Play Festival and The Last Frontier Theatre Conference. His ongoing collaboration with electronic music composer Mike Vernusky has been supported by an award from MetLife Creative Connections. Romero received an MFA in Playwriting from The University of Texas-Austin, where he held the James A. Michener Fellowship. His works are published by YouthPLAYS, Next Stage Press, Heinemann Press, and Playscripts, Inc. For more about Greg: https://newplayexchange.org/users/5432/greg-romero

Emma Rosecan

Emma Rosecan Emma Rosecan is currently a student at the University of Virginia. She is undecided on her major, but plans to continue doing creative writing projects for fun. This is the first play that Emma has written. She has participated in multiple drama productions since third grade, as actor, student producer, stage manager or combination of the above. Her favorite experience before writing Cupid and Psyche: An Internet Love Story was stage managing Beauty and the Beast while also playing the part of Chip the teacup. Emma enjoys reading (her favorite author is John Green), watching horror movies and goofing off with her friends, family and dog.

Amelia Ross

Amelia Ross Amelia Denyven Ross is a freelance developmental editor for independent KidLit authors. She has studied children's and young adult literature for over fifteen years and has been privileged to work with youth in the public library, school and religious settings. Amelia has an MFA in children's literature, a BA in creative writing and a copyediting certificate (in progress). She is a member of the Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI) and the Editorial Freelancers Association (EFA) and is a Pitch Wars alumna. Visit her website at www.ameliadenyvenross.com.

Danny Rothschild

Danny Rothschild Danny Rothschild's life began in Italy, but took a sudden turn when his family decided it would be a nice idea to live in Africa. This incident would eventually change his life forever by giving him a magnitude of experiences that would enhance his thinking, his writing, and his views on life. He moved to the US for the first time to attend Interlochen Arts Academy as a creative writing major.  He currently resides in Bath, one of the most beautiful cities in the United Kingdom, where he studies Creative Writing at Bath Spa University and works at a soap factory, volunteering for the Theatre Royale every now and then. His one-act was published by YouthPLAYS, received an off-Broadway staged reading by Stephen Sondheim's Young Playwrights Inc., and he was a finalist for VSA's Playwrights Discovery, a finalist for NFAA's YoungARTS program, received honorable mentions from the Blank Theatre Company's Playwrights Festival, was the recipient of numerous Scholastic Art and Writing Awards, and winner of many unofficial - but equally prestigious - fort building contests. He hopes to become an accomplished writer, while running a bakery on the side.

Mike Rothschild

Mike Rothschild Mike Rothschild is a playwright and screenwriter living in Los Angeles.  He is a playwright in residence at SkyPilot Theatre, where he has written numerous works, short and long.  He has also freelanced for many websites and media companies, and written several television pilots.  His favorite cupcake flavor is red velvet, but wouldn't turn down something with chocolate, either.  Follow him on Twitter at @rothschildmd.

Sharyn Rothstein

Sharyn Rothstein Sharyn Rothstein’s plays have been produced and workshopped in New York and around the country by companies such as The Williamstown Theatre Festival, Ensemble Studio Theatre, New Georges, 3Graces Theater Co., Bay Area Playwrights Foundation, The Vital Theatre and Soho Think Tank. She holds an MFA in dramatic writing from New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts, where she was the recipient of the Television Department’s Award for Excellence, and is the recipient of a 2008 Ensemble Studio Theater/Sloan commission. Her play March was a finalist for the Yale Drama Series Competition, and her newest full-length play, The Invested, which will be produced in New York in 2011, was a finalist in the SheWRITES New Play Competition at Synchronicity Theatre in Atlanta. Sharyn is also a member of Youngblood, Ensemble Studio Theatre’s collective for emerging playwrights under the age of thirty, as well as the Ars Nova Playgroup.

John Rotondo

John Rotondo is a NY/NJ-based screenwriter, playwright, director and producer. He co-wrote the feature film, The Garden Left Behind, directed by Flavio Alves, which premiered at SXSW in 2019, winning the Audience Award. The film is currently touring the festival circuit, where it has won over 20 awards. He is working on the screenplay for Bonita, his second collaboration with Alves. Rotondo's previous film work includes the screenplays for Resemblance and Mockingbird (Nicholl Fellowship Quarterfinalist). His work for the stage includes: Love (Awkwardly), which won the audience favorite award at Manhattan Theatre Source (New York, NY), Storage, and Something About Friendship. He recently appeared as John in the TV pilot, Dead John, which premiered at the New York Television Festival, winning Best Writing. He is a graduate of the Goldberg Department of Dramatic Writing in NYU's Tisch School of the Arts and works as a teacher of Creative Writing. 

Alex Rubin

Alex Rubin Alex Rubin's plays and musicals have been featured at The National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences (First Love), 54 Below, Samuel French OOB Festival (Dust and Ash), William Street Rep, New York Theater Barn, the Drama League's DirectorFest (Group), American Stage's 21st Century Voices, and more. She is the recipient of the Francis Ford Coppola Award, a SPACE on Ryder resident, two time National Winter Playwrights Retreat resident, 2013/14 Big Vision Empty Wallet Playwriting Fellow, member of The Creators Program, and winner of The York Theatre's Tune in Time and The 85th Annual Writers Digest Award in Playwriting. Alex is currently enrolled in USC's MFA in Film and TV Writing program. www.AlexRubinWrites.com

Isabella Russell-Ides

Isabella Russell-Ides Isabella Russell-Ides is an award-winning author of plays, poetry, and novels. Her two adaptions for YouthPLAYS, Little Women and The Secret Garden, were labors of love, created to give a fresh feel to these beloved classics.  The Catnapper Mystery was written as a classroom play when she worked as an creative consultant at Mockingbird Elementary School. Her critically acclaimed adult plays have seen regional productions across the United States. JO & LOUISA, a two-hander in which Jo March confronts her author Louisa May Alcott, took home a Critics Forman Award. The Early Education of Conrad Eppler was chosen in Echo Theatre's national Big Shout Out competition and is now a novel: White Monkey Chronicles: The Complete Trilogy. CoCo & Gigi (a Beckett-inspired parlay) and Lydie Marland in the Afterlife opened in Dallas, Texas to showers of critical praise. Leonard's Car won Nora's Playhouse Outstanding New Play award in NYC. Isabella has also written two commissioned historical plays. Her latest, A Black Cowboy Comes to Town, introduces the wild and little-known tale of Birl Brown, Texas wrangler.  

Dylan Schifrin

Dylan Schifrin Dylan Schifrin is a playwright, composer/lyricist and librettist based in Los Angeles, CA. He is a Yale University graduate (Class of 2020) with a B.A. in Musical Theater Composition through the Shen Curriculum for Musical Theater. Dylan's work has been distinguished by the Blank Theatre Company, the California Playwrights Project, the National YoungArts Foundation (Finalist in Playwriting), ASCAP, The Foundation for New American Musicals and New Musicals Inc. (2021 New Voices Project Finalist). He is a current member of the BMI Lehman Engel Musical Theatre Librettists Workshop and the IAMA Under 30 Playwrights Lab (2021-2022). You can read and listen to more of his work on his website, https://dylanschifrin.com.

Keegon Schuett

Keegon Schuett Keegon Schuett is a playwright, filmmaker and performance artist. They are an alum of the Curious New Voices program of Curious Theatre in Denver where their plays Oedipus Vexed and Anniversary both premiered. Schuett received their BFA in Theatre Design and Technology from the University of Memphis, where they acted, wrote original plays, stage managed, designed costumes and directed. Schuett received their MFA in Writing for the Stage and Screen from Northwestern University. During their time at NU, they wrote Pilgrimage, a short play about trans issues. They filmed an autobiographical documentary entitled Selfie, which has screened at film festivals across America. Schuett was the recipient of a grant to film an original sitcom pilot entitled Out of Sync, a coming-of-age story about a drag queen in a lipsyncing competition. Their plays Slow, Kitty Steals a Dog, Brace YourselfCount Spatula and Goddess of Tears are published by YouthPLAYS. They currently live and work in Chicago, IL.

Hannah Estelle Sears

Hannah Estelle Sears Hannah Estelle Sears grew up in San Francisco and has been writing creatively since she was seven years old. She began writing one-acts in eighth grade and was a finalist in PlayGround's New Voices One-Act Writing Contest as a sophomore in high school. She has been active in theatre her whole life, performing predominantly in musicals such as Aida, Footloose, The Music Man and Oklahoma, as well as participating in a student-written and performed peer education theatre project and student-written one acts at her high school, The Urban School. She is a writer and director in The Urban School's 2012 spring one-acts festival and plans to attend Yale University in the fall. She is extremely excited to be part of YouthPLAYS and thanks her mother, father, sisters and mentors.

Nathan Selinger

Nathan Selinger Nathan Selinger is a native of Skokie, IL, where a staged reading of his play Poster Children was presented during his high school's New Playwright's Showcase. In addition to playwriting, he has appeared onstage in roles such as Bernard in Arcadia, Hal in Proof, and Callaghan in Legally Blonde. While getting his B.A. in Theatre from Northwestern University, he served on the executive board for the Student Theatre Coalition (StuCo) and interned at the Williamstown Theatre Festival. Nathan now lives in New York City, where he works as a stagehand at the Public Theater.

Madelyn Sergel

Madelyn Sergel Totally Okay, Right Now was a featured play in New Jersey's Equity children's theatre Growing Stage Theatre New Play-Reading Series, honorable mention in the Julie Harris Play Competition for youth theatre, the Marilyn Hall Award. The world premiere of Madelyn Sergel's Throwing Rice will be produced at Three Brothers Theatre in March 2020, and Conversations About an Empty Suit is the inaugural selection of the FRESH SCRIPTS Three Brothers play reading series. A resident playwright at Three Brothers Theatre, other full productions include Taking Turns (Three Brothers Theatre), Special Needs (Magnetic Theatre, Clockwise Theatre), The Party in the Kitchen (Clockwise Theatre) and Another Piece of Cake (Citadel Theatre). Her work has received readings at American Theatre Company, Citadel Theatre, Gift Theatre, Clockwise Theatre, Chicago Dramatists, Skokie Theatre and Gurnee Theatre Company.

Ed Shockley

Ed Shockley Ed Shockley, MFA is author of more than fifty plays. His works have set five box office records and been honored with numerous awards, including the Stephen Sondheim Award for Outstanding Contributions to American Musical Theatre, a Pew Fellowship in the Arts and PA State Arts Council Playwrights Fellowship. He has received commissions for youth theatre plays from Seattle Children's Theatre, Children's Theatre of Charlotte, Dallas Children's Theatre, Black Spectrum Theatre and the Harlem Renaissance Theatre. His historical short film, Stone Mansion, aired on Showtime television. Web: http://edshockleymfa.com.

Michael Silversher

Michael Silversher Three times nominated for the prime-time Emmy Awards, Grammy-winning songwriter Michael Silversher has spent more than 40 years working in music, theatre, films and television, beginning with a staff-writing position with the Fifth Dimension in 1969, followed by ten years as founding composer/musical director of Theatreworks (Palo Alto, CA). Since 1986, Michael has written, composed and created sound design for Tony Award-winning theatre companies, The Mark Taper Forum (Los Angeles, CA) and South Coast Repertory (Costa Mesa, CA), and has toured the world in support of theatre, working regularly with the Kennedy Center (Washington, DC) and serving as resident composer for the Sundance Playwrights' Lab for five years.  He composed the score for 75 episodes of the hit television series Dinosaur Train, all of the songs for Pajanimals, and has worked on numerous other television and film projects.

Lojo Simon

Lojo Simon A writer in a variety of genres, Lojo Simon wrote the book and lyrics for Creede Repertory Theatre's Young Audience Outreach Tour, which each year reaches more than 35,000 students in eight states. CRT musicals include Best Foot ForwardSeeds of Change and Albert Porter: Boy Explorer. YouthPLAYS titles include Nice & Slow (Old Miner's Children's Playwriting Contest winner), PressGorilla BallerinaPlum LuckHero Zero and Heartland (ATHE/KCACTF David Mark Cohen Playwriting Prize runner-up, Dayton Playhouse Futurefest winner, with Anita Simons). Her plays also appear in YouthPLAYS anthologies. A Laguna Beach Literary Laureate Emeritus, Lojo works in her community as a teaching artist and dramaturg. More at www.lojosimon.com.

Anita Yellin Simons

Anita Yellin Simons Anita Yellin Simons is a political activist and playwright who combines a love of history and activism in her plays. Her first play, Goodbye Memories, is about Anne Frank and her family before going into hiding. After she met Lojo, they collaborated on three plays: Ladies First, an anti-war comedy; Heartland, a WWII drama; and J'oy Vey, a comedy about dueling grandmas over Christmas and Chanukah. Simons' other plays are fictionalized from news stories about rape in the military or cover personal subjects dealing with teenage drug addiction, family dysfunction and domestic abuse.

Carissa Meisner Smit

Carissa Meisner Smit Carissa Meisner Smit has been involved in almost every aspect of theatre production for more than twenty-five years. Producing, directing, and performing have been extremely influential on her writing for the stage. Playwriting projects include an adaptation of Hans Christian Anderson's The Snow Queen and Love is a Divine Accident (Edmonds Driftwood Players). Collaborations with co-author Paul Lewis: Timmy Perlmutter's Extraordinary Hanukkah (Edmonds Driftwood Players), The Crossing, A Musical (Theater Schmeater and Jewel Box Theatre); and The Gingerbread Man, A Musical (Valley Center Stage). 

Tom Smith

Tom Smith Tom Smith's published plays include The Wild and Wacky Rhyming Stories of Miss Henrietta Humpledowning, ESL, What Comes Around, A Christmas Carol (full-length and one-act versions) and Johnny and Sally  Ann... (YouthPLAYS), Marguerita's Secret Diary (Baker's Plays); Gray (Original Works Online); and Dangerous, The Odyssey and Drinking Habits and Drinking Habits 2: Caught in the Act published by Playscripts. His other plays have received productions both nationally and internationally. Tom is the recipient of the Robert J. Pickering Award for Excellence in Playwriting, the ATHE Playworks Award, the Orlin R. Corey Outstanding Regional Playwright Award, the Richard Odlin Award, a Seattle Footlights Award, and has been a selected participant in numerous playwriting festivals across the country. He is a proud member of the Dramatists Guild. Feel free to check out his website at www.tomsmithplaywright.com.

Laura Lundgren Smith

Laura Lundgren Smith Laura Lundgren Smith holds a B.A. with Honors in English and Theatre, and an M.A. in Theatre. She is the author of such works of historical fiction as Dark Road and We Are the Sea, and her plays have been produced over a thousand times across North America and around the world. She lives in Fort Worth, Texas.

Emily C. A. Snyder

Emily C. A. Snyder Emily C. A. Snyder is a published and internationally produced playwright and novelist, whose work has been performed from Christchurch, New Zealand to Dublin, Ireland. A prolific writer and composer, she is the author of over 70 plays, musicals, operas, ballets, and masques. For Valentine’s 2014, her five-act iambic pentameter play, Cupid and Psyche ~ A New Play in Blank Verse, premiered in New York City to sold-out audiences. As a classical artist, she has directed the major works of Shakespeare’s canon, and regularly teaches adults and adolescents about approaching his text. She has also had the pleasure of playing several of Shakespeare’s most notable roles, including Rosalind from As You Like It in Stratford-upon-Avon, England, catty-corner from Shakespeare’s birthplace. Snyder is the Co-Founder and Artistic Director of Turn to Flesh Productions (TTF), a NYC-based theatre company specializing in new plays written in heightened styles featuring strong female protagonists. www.emilycasnyder.info 

Elisabeth Giffin Speckman

Elisabeth Giffin Speckman Elisabeth Giffin Speckman (she/her) received her MFA in Fiction from Butler University. In addition to YouthPLAYS, her work appears in Midwestern Gothic, CHEAP POP, Flash Fiction Magazine, Best Men's Monologues 2021 (Smith & Kraus) and Stage It! 2: Thirty 10-Minute Plays. Her play Cindy/Ella is available through Next Stage Press. Her plays have been produced throughout the United States as well as internationally. She has developed work with the Kennedy Center Playwriting Intensive, 29th Street Playwrights Collective, The Bechdel Group, The Skeleton Rep(resents), The Barrow Group and more. She is a two-time Henley Rose Award finalist and an O'Neill finalist. She is the founding artistic director of Ensemble Children's Theatre in Indianapolis, Indiana, and has taught and directed youth theatre for over a decade. For more info, visit egspeckman.com.

Donna Spector

Donna Spector Donna Spector’s play Golden Ladder (Women Playwrights: Best Plays of 2002 , Smith & Kraus) was produced Off Broadway, as was her first play, Another Paradise. Her plays have also appeared Off Off Broadway, regionally and in Canada, Ireland and Greece. A member of the Dramatists Guild, Poets & Writers and the International Centre for Women Playwrights, she received N.E.H. grants to study in Greece and production grants from the Dodge Foundation and the New York Council for the Arts. Winner of the Sunwall Comedy Prize and the Eileen Heckart Senior Drama Award, she was a finalist in the Beverly Hills/Julie Harris, Mill Mountain Theatre, and Theatre Unbound contests. Her play Short-Term Affairs (35 IN 10: Thirty-Five Ten-Minute Plays, Dramatic Publishing) won the Palm Springs National Short Play Fest and was produced at Playwrights Circle (Palm Springs, CA), Gallery Players (Brooklyn, NY) and Actors on the Verge (New York, NY). Her poems, stories, scenes and monologues have appeared in many literary magazines and anthologies.

Steven Stack

Steven Stack Steven Stack is the lead playwright and acting instructor at Forte Studios in Mount Horeb, Wisconsin, where he has the pleasure of working with amazingly talented actors ages 7 to adult. He has been involved with theater for over 20 years as playwright, actor, director, and instructor. Steven has written and directed several full-length plays, countless one-acts and many scenes for various theaters, performing arts schools and professional organizations. He spends part of every summer at the Wisconsin Center for Academically Talented Youth, where he guides gifted and talented students in writing and performing their own original theatrical works.

Susan M. Steadman

Susan M. Steadman Susan M. Steadman has written for and about the stage during several decades as a theatre practitioner. With 17 produced and/or published plays, her work includes pieces for young audiences, such as The Cinderella Chronicles; competition-winning dark comedies with a feminist slant, including Filling Spaces; and audience-participation murder mysteries. Her theatre publications range from the critically lauded reference work, Dramatic Re-Visions, to magazine and journal articles. With a Ph.D. in Theatre from LSU, she has taught at universities, public and private schools, recreation departments and conferences. Along the way, she staged over 70 productions, guided two improvisation troupes, toured company-developed plays for children, and served as artistic director of a professional theatre company. She is the founder of Port City Playwrights' Project (Wilmington, NC), and attends meetings via Zoom from her Asheville home.

Alexis Stickovitch

Alexis Stickovitch Alexis Stickovitch is currently a student at James Madison University. She is pursuing a Forensic Chemistry degree and is hoping to work for the FBI one day. She is also a Spanish minor. This is Alexis' first play that she has written but not the first play that she has seen. She has avidly participated in drama clubs since sixth grade with roles including a singer in Schoolhouse Rock and Juliet in Romeo and Juliet. In her free time, Alexis enjoys reading, playing guitar, doing taekwondo, cooking, and hanging out with her family and dogs. Her favorite author is Chuck Palahniuk and subsequently, her favorite movie is Fight Club.

Owen Stone

Owen Stone Owen Stone is the author of several one-acts, originally created for use in his high school’s one act festival. His work has been performed by professionals as well. In addition to writing plays he also has acted in such roles as Claudio (Much Ado About Nothing), Mr. Lowther (The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie), and Mr. Feldzieg (The Drowsy Chaperone). His talents have also been lent to directing, as he has assistant directed for the CETA award winning high school production of The Odd Couple and Shrek the Musical, along with directing one acts for his high school. He plans to dedicate the rest of his life to creating stimulating pieces of theatre.

Callan Stout

Callan Stout Callan Stout is a New York-based playwright who grew up in Los Angeles. Her children's plays Brownies, Bicycles & Bigfoot and her adaption of The Jungle Book are both published by YouthPLAYS. The Jungle Book has been performed across the US, and in England, Scotland, Cameroon, Zimbabwe and Australia. Her "adult plays" have been developed with Pipeline Theatre Company, Fresh Ground Pepper, Cherry Lane Theatre, Columbia University, 12 Peers Theatre, Savage Players, The Vagrancy and LA Female Playwrights Initiative, and NYU. She has been an O'Neill National Playwrights Conference Semifinalist, a Prince Grace Award Semifinalist and a Hope on Stage Award Finalist. She is an alum of Fresh Ground Pepper's Playground Play Group, an alum of Pipeline Theatre Company's PlayLab, a member of Lather, Rise, Repeat and a grateful member of The Dramatists Guild. BFA: NYU Tisch, MLitt: University of Aberdeen in Folklore. MFA: Columbia. www.callanstout.com.

Trevor Suthers

Trevor Suthers Trevor Suthers has had over 70 pieces of theatre both staged and broadcast and screened in over 100 productions. These range from monologues and sketches, to musicals and a pantomime. He has had both one-act and full-length plays produced in the US, Manchester, London, Edinburgh, Brighton, Salisbury and all around the North West of the UK in every imaginable venue from mainstage to theatre foyer to numerous bars. He has been story editor for popular TV soap Coronation Street and has written episodes of Eastenders. He has also produced over 30 stage shows and 14 performances of topical-satire show, Headline Cabaret, since its inception in 1993. He has written for and produced 21 bi-yearly editions of the critically-acclaimed JB Shorts, six short plays by top TV writers, to sell-out audiences in Manchester. 

Stacy D. Tanner

Stacy D. Tanner A confessed theatre nerd, Stacy D. Tanner has an unnatural knack for self-deprecation, and prefers to write her bio in the third person. Fluent in screenplays, stage plays, and novels, her full-length stage productions include The Great Houdini, an elaborate two-act play based on the master magician's life, and Off The Charts, a rock musical/hybrid dramedy inspired by the formative years of Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice. A great love for one-acts developed during her stint at college, and culminated in several fully produced works—based on her short stories—including How I Saw It, High Maintenance, and Stak. Stacy is now helming WRCP Radio Theatre, an independent broadcasting network that adapts original screen and stage plays into classic, audio-only format, complete with effects and music. Good times, for a world of pure imagination.

Abigail Taylor-Sansom

Abigail Taylor-Sansom Abigail Taylor-Sansom is a playwright, screenwriter and actor. Her work has been presented in the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom and is published by YouthPLAYS, Smith & Kraus and Heuer. In addition to writing and performing, she was on the faculty of the American Musical and Dramatic Academy in New York City for nine years and has guest lectured at The New School's Eugene Lang College of Liberal Arts and Monroe College. Abigail is a former Amtrak Writer in Residence and a proud alumna of UNC School of the Arts, UNC Chapel Hill and UCLA. www.abigailtaylorsansom.com or follow @tay_sans on Twitter and Instagram.

Rachel Teagle

Rachel Teagle Rachel Teagle is a playwright, librettist and comedian who grew up in the Silicon Valley, moved around the country and settled in Minnesota. She helped found the Atlanta Fringe Festival and the Twin Cities Playwright Cabal. Other works include The Impracticality of Modern-Day Mastodons and adaptations of The Secret Garden, The Snow Queen and Robin Hood. She was awarded the Leah Ryan's Fund for Emerging Women Writers prize for her play The Ever and After. She currently resides in St. Paul with her spouse, two kids and several pets.

Jason Tremblay

Jason Tremblay Jason Tremblay is a playwright whose Austin productions include The Virgin w/ 10000 Arrows, Boom for Real and The Sound Ascending. National productions include: Katrina: The Girl Who Wanted Her Name Back by Adventure Stage Chicago, Chicken and Ice Cream by Palm Beach Drama Works, Hosers by the Boulder Acting Group, The Cleaning Lady by the Flying Leap Players, West Texas Honey Bee Blues by the Offstage Theatre and Tennessee Darke at the New Orleans Fringe Festival. His work has received development support from the Bonderman, New Visions/New Voices, and Theatre Masters. His plays have been awarded the KCACTF Michael Kanin Theatre for Youth Playwriting Award, the EVCT Emerging Playwright Award, and an Access to Artistic Excellence Grant from the NEA. He received his MFA in Playwriting from the University of Texas at Austin.

Sara Turner

Sara Turner Sara Turner lives and works as an artist in Lexington, KY. She is one half of the studio Cricket Press, a local business focusing on illustration and design. They've expanded their studio into a thriving business translating their illustrations through the hand-printed processes of letterpress and screen printing. When she's not ruining her and her husband's clothes slinging ink on paper, Sara also spends time making various hand-printed goods and hand-crafted items. Along with her design work, Sara also writes, illustrates and publishes comics under the name Tiny Ghost Stories. Sara's artwork centers around childhood nostalgia and adventure. She loves exploring the outdoors and finds inspiration from the questions she had as a youth. Her work strives to capture her love of art, the outdoors and people who influenced her throughout her life. 

Dave Ulrich

Dave Ulrich When Dave Ulrich is not writing plays for SkyPilot Theatre, he enjoys writing challenging works for children. Along with The Raven And The Swan, he has also penned The Adventures Of Max And Cheez children's book series, shorts for the Disney Channel, and has two additional children's books planned. As a playwright in residence at SkyPilot Theatre, Dave has created Death And Popcorn, Ten Lords A-Leaping, and The Infernal Airport. Before SkyPilot, he created over 40 short plays, two one-acts, and two full-length plays, The Passionates and The Harvey Project. He is now at work on his first musical, The Golden Parachute. His plays have been performed on both coasts, in the heartland, and even Europe and North Africa. He has also penned countless radio and television commercials, digital ads, and print ads for the advertising industry. You can find him online at daveulrich.net.

Hope Villanueva

Hope Villanueva Hope Villanueva is an AEA stage manager by profession but constantly writes. She was a 2021 O'Neill Finalist, and her work has been presented at New Works Virtual Festival, Kennedy Center Page to Stage, Ally Theatre Company, Next Stop Theatre, The Women's Voices Theatre Festival, Next Act! New Play Summit, the Baltimore Playwrights' Festival, The Black and Latino Playwrights' Conference, The Discovery New Play Festival, Kitchen Dog New Play Festival, Rapid Lemon Productions and Wayward Artist. Her play, Her, Across the River, was part of the INKubator On Air and can be heard on iTunes and Spotify, and The Veils, was audio recorded for The Parsnip Ship. She is the Literary Manager at Bay Street Theatre in Sag Harbor, NY.  

Bradley Walton

Bradley Walton After working for seven years as a comic book writer and artist without ever quite having made a living at it, Bradley Walton landed a job in the library of his high school alma mater. A well-remembered drama and forensics junkie, he was recruited to head the school's forensics program and direct the annual spring play. Eventually, Bradley decided to take a shot at writing one of those plays himself. To his enormous relief, he turned out to be rather good at it, and just sort of kept going. Bradley lives in Virginia with his family, some cats, and a bunch of Star Wars stuff. His plays have been performed throughout the United States and abroad.    

Lucy Wang

Lucy Wang Lucy Wang writes, teaches, and occasionally performs. Her plays have been performed all over the world. Wang has also written two short films (one of which she directed), and sold a pilot to Disney. Her awards include the Kennedy Center Fund for New American Plays, Best New Political Social Play from the Katherine and Lee Chilcote Foundation, Berrilla Kerr Foundation, James Thurber Fellowship, CAPE's New Writers TV Award, NATPE Diversity Fellow, William and Flora Hewlett Foundation Honorary Fellow, Annenberg Community Beach House Writer in Residence. Wang has taught at many fine institutions including Firestone High, Marshall High, University of Southern California, Ohio State University, American Conservatory Theater. Her manuscripts are archived at the Huntington Library in San Marino. She is a member of The Alliance of Los Angeles Playwrights, the Los Angeles Female Playwrights Initiative, and on the faculty of E-script and the Dramatists Guild Institute.

Elana Weiner-Kaplow

Elana Weiner-Kaplow Elana Weiner-Kaplow is currently studying acting at the University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign.  Last year she lived in Tel-Aviv, volunteering at an after-school shelter for Arab and Jewish children where she taught English, guitar, as well as a theatre games and storytelling class.  She has also worked at the Na Laga’at Center in Tel-Aviv, a theatre for deaf-blind actors.  She is a graduate of Niles North High School ('10) in Skokie, Illinois. In addition to Pitched, she has also written a one-woman show about the life of Yiddish Theatre actress Molly Picon.

Jeri Weiss

Jeri Weiss Jeri Weiss is a Northern California playwright whose work has been published and produced throughout the United States and Canada. She received an Ivey Award following the Minneapolis premiere of Before You Speak, a play about bullying and school violence. Her controversial gun play, Run Jane Run, was a regional finalist in the Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival, and her dark satire The Procedure, set in a misogynistic society, was selected by The Stella Adler Studio of Acting in its search for plays with social impact. Jeri's work has been published by YouthPLAYS, Freshwater Press, and Applause Theatre & Cinema Books. She is an MFA playwright at Hollins University and a member of the Dramatists Guild.

David Lee White

David Lee White David Lee White is a New Jersey-based playwright and educator who has worked with a number of theatres and educational programs in the NJ/NY/PA area. For 14 years, he was the Associate Artistic Director at Passage Theatre in Trenton. White specializes in creating shows based on interviews and collaborative ensemble work. He has created three musicals with Kate Brennan—AliEN8, Clean Slate and Illuminate. He was commissioned by NJPAC to write the play Fixed, based on interviews with mental health care professionals and people suffering from bipolar disorder. He also co-created, with Bill Fennelly and Drexel University students, the webseries Essential, based on interviews with essential workers during the pandemic. David worked with the Trenton Central High Drama Club and Passage Theatre on This Trenton Life, which was the subject of an Emmy-nominated broadcast on PCK Media's State of the Arts. www.davidleewhite.nethttps://alien8themusical.wordpress.com.

Lois Wickstrom

Lois Wickstrom Lois June Wickstrom lives in a world where imaginary playmates are real. She doesn't remember being born, so she finds unbirthdays are more exciting than the official once-a-year date on the calendar. She's taken so many science classes that she believes science is the solution to almost every problem, including the dilemmas in fairy tales.

Karin Williams

Karin Williams Karin Diann Williams is an Artistic Associate at NYC's Looking Glass Theatre where audiences have seen her plays Head, Time Troll and The World among others. Her work has also been produced by San Diego's Fritz Theater—where she served as playwright-in-residence from 1992-2001—the Gertrude Stein Repertory Theatre Digital Performance Institute, Art House Productions, Lamia Ink!, the Midtown International Theatre Festival, Collaboraction Theater, Boston Theaterworks, Space 55, Flush Ink Productions and many more. As a partner in the motion media company CulpepperWilliams, she wrote and produced The Captive (Webby People's Choice Award & NYTVF "Best Web Series" Award) and the independent feature film Jordan. Her plays are available through YouthPLAYS and Original Works Publishing.

Allison Williams

Allison Williams Allison Williams is the author of Hamlette, Mmmbeth, and Drop Dead Juliet (an EdTA top ten most produced play), as well as a musical of The Hunchback of Notre Dame. Her radio plays have been heard on NPR, and she toured Canada with her award-winning solo show, True Story. Allison also travels the world as a trapeze artist and fire-eater with the Aerial Angels, and coaches for Starfish Circus, a school residency program.

Claire Wittman

Claire Wittman Claire Wittman is a playwright, educator and dramaturg presently based in Virginia. She loves creating theatre for young actors and audiences, taking long walks while listening to podcasts and spending time with her cat Juliet.

Cynthia Chi-Wing Wong

Cynthia Chi-Wing Wong Cynthia Chi-Wing Wong obtained her Master of Fine Arts in Musical Theatre Writing at New York University. Her clarinet solo piece "A Daisy Chrysanthemum" received its world premiere at Carnegie Hall in New York. Her full-length musical Jennifer the Unspecial: Time Travel, Love Potion & 8th Grade (book and lyrics by Matthew Mezzacappa) was nominated for the Weston's New Musical Award and was produced at NYU's Summer Workshop and Two River Theatre in Red Bank, New Jersey. Jennifer the Unspecial won the Outstanding Musical Award at the 2011 Ronald M. Ruble New Play Festival at Caryl Crane Children's Theatre in Ohio.  Cynthia was one of the few Asian composers admitted to the prestigious BMI Lehman Engel Musical Theatre Workshop in New York; she was commissioned to transcribe piano scores for the internationally renowned pianist Lang Lang more than once; Cynthia is also a TCSOL certified Chinese teacher from Columbia University. 

Elizabeth Wong

Elizabeth Wong Elizabeth Wong's award-winning plays for family and young audiences include Tam Tran Goes to Washington (East West Players), Boid & Oskar (Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park), Prometheus, Goloshes of Fortune and Amazing Adventures of the Marvelous Monkey King (Denver Center Theatre), The Magic Bird Musical (Honolulu Theatre For Youth), The Happy Prince: The Pop Opera (Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts), with music by Emmy-Award winning Michael Silversher. She co-wrote with novelist Jeff Gottesfeld the stage adaptation of Randa Abdel-Fattah's Does My Head Look Big in This and Josh Hangarne's The World's Strongest Librarian. Ms. Wong is a Disney Studio Writers Fellow, a regular guest editorial columnist for The Los Angeles Times and a writer for Margaret Cho's ABC sitcom All-American Girl. She holds an MFA from NYU's Tisch School of the Arts, teaches playwriting at Boston Conservatory@Berklee and is a proud member of PEN, Writers Guild of America and the Dramatists Guild of America. Her website is www.elizabethwong.net

Alison Wood

Alison Wood Alison Wood's work has encompassed both music and theatre; the musical 4 A.M. is her first venture combining these as a writer. After graduating from Harvard with a degree in Dramatic Literature, she worked in professional theater as director, teacher, actor, and stage manager. From there Alison shifted her focus to music, writing and recording two albums (At Arm's Length and Fairytale Endings Aside) and playing shows with her band. More recently, Alison has taken a break from writing to earn her Ph.D. in Civil Engineering (focusing on sustainability, water, and decision-making). She currently works as an Associate Professor of Sustainability and looks forward to getting back to writing.

Randy Wyatt

Randy Wyatt Randy Wyatt is a professor, director, playwright and improv coach. In addition to his plays with YouthPLAYS, his work has been published by Heinemann, Applause Publishing, Smith & Kraus, Brooklyn Publishing and Playscripts, Inc. and has been produced throughout the United States and around the world. He has directed over 70 plays professionally and academically. He has also devised work alongside community-based theatre for social change initiatives including The Talk, One Simple Question and #thewaterproject about Great Lakes water issues. He earned his MFA in Directing from Minnesota State University, Mankato. He is an Associate Member of the Society of Stage Directors and Choreographers (SSDC). He currently serves as Chair of the Department of Theatre and Dance at Union College in Schenectady, NY.  

Asher Wyndham

Asher Wyndham Asher Wyndham [he/his/him] resides in Minneapolis, Minnesota. His work has been produced around the country, as well as Canada, England, and Australia. His awards include the John Cauble Award for Outstanding Short Play from KCACTF and the Holland New Voices Award for the same play from the Great Plains Theatre Conference. He attented the William Inge Festival in 2018 and 2019. For Theatre for Youth, his focus is on the monologue for production and competition. These monologues are available on New Play Exchange. https://newplayexchange.org/users/3039/asher-wyndham

Ricky Young-Howze

Ricky Young-Howze Ricky Young-Howze is a playwright, director, and blogger from New Jersey. They are a transplant from Tennessee where they attended Austin Peay State University where they earned a B.S. in Theatre Performance with a minor in Design. There they were awarded the honor of "Most Outstanding Exiting Senior of Theatre and Dance." They are an MFA Playwright from Hollins University.

Nelson Yu

Nelson Yu Nelson Yu is a Toronto-based playwright, screenwriter, middle-grade novelist, and video game developer. His plays and musicals have been produced in Canada. He studied under acclaimed MG/YA author Richard Scrimger at the Humber School for Writers and acting & writing at George Brown College and Second City Toronto. He is a graduate of the University of Toronto (BSc) and Humber College's Creative Writing program.

Joe Zarrow

Joe Zarrow Joe Zarrow is a playwright and actor. His Chicago public school satire Principal Principle was workshopped at the Brown/Trinity Playwrights Repertory before Stage Left and Theatre Seven of Chicago coproduced the world premiere (Joseph Jefferson Award Nomination for Best New Work). Principal Principle, which set attendance records for its producers, has gone on to be seen in cities ranging from Atlanta, Georgia to Auckland, New Zealand. Joe's plays have also been produced by Walkabout Theatre (The Pigeons), LiveWire Chicago (Everythingaoke), Tympanic Theatre (Roll), Broken Nose Theatre (Kodak Shirley), and Collaboraction (Overnight Parking Ban in Effect). As an actor, Joe has appeared on Chicago PD, and other favorite roles include Jeffrey in The Totalitarians (Theatre Nova), Bottom in A Midsummer Night's Dream (Sankofa), and Dad in Walk Two Moons (Adventure Stage). Joe is a proud graduate of The School at Steppenwolf.

Don Zolidis

Don Zolidis Don Zolidis is a former middle and high school theatre teacher, and one of the most-produced playwrights in America. His more than 100 published plays have been produced 20,000 times and have appeared in every state and 68 countries. His first novel, The Seven Torments of Amy and Craig (A Love Story), was released by Disney-Hyperion in 2018, and his second book, War and Speech, was published in 2020.