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Better Together: Four Playwrights Share Their New Plays with Ashland

ASHLAND, Ore. — In the basement of Mix Bakeshop, Beth Kander began the first rewrites of her new play, Hazardous Materials. It was fall 2015 and her play The Bottle Tree was one of the four winning plays for Ashland New Plays Festival’s flagship event that year.
ANPF is a non-profit organization celebrating its 25th year of encouraging playwrights in the creation of new works. The organization offers public readings of selected plays and educational forums to the community through discussions and workshops.
ANPF’s Festival Week runs October 19 through 23, with matinee and evening performances each day as well as a playwriting workshop on Saturday, October 22, led by Oregon Literary Fellowship recipient and ANPF Host Playwright EM Lewis.
This year’s winners are Beth Kander for Hazardous Materials, Stephanie Walker for The Madres, Mike Teele for EdanEv, and Michael Erickson for Oberon Springs.
Hundreds of playwrights submit new works to ANPF each year, and the winners are chosen by a cadre of local volunteer readers and ANPF’s Artistic Director, Kyle Haden.
During the festival, the winning plays are presented as dramatic readings, directed and acted by individuals from Oregon Shakespeare Festival and Southern Oregon University.
All the winning playwrights agree that the opportunity to share their work with actors, directors, and audiences strengthens their plays.
“My work can only be stronger when working with directors, set designers, actors. We are better together,” says Kander, her sentiments echoed by Walker, Teele, and Erickson.
“Getting a laugh or a question, it’s invaluable,” says Erickson. “That’s why something like ANPF is so great because you get that feedback that’s so hard to come by.”
Our feature, “Better Together,” introduces you to each of the playwrights and their new plays. Click here to download the pdf file.
Learn more about ANPF and see the complete performance schedule at www.ashlandnewplays.org.
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