Artistic director Philip Himberg, director Liesl Tommy and playwright Qui Nguyen develop work at the Sundance Institute in 2012. (Photo by Fred Hayes)

Sundance Institute Unveils Retreat Roster

Playwrights Ayad Akhtar and Mallery Avidon and composer Julianne Wicke Davis are among those who will share development space at the Sundance’s ranch in Wyoming.

SHERIDAN, WYO.: The Sundance Institute has announced the slate for its 2015 Playwrights and Composers Retreat. Playwrights Ayad Akhtar, Mallery Avidon, Samantha Chanse, Fernanda Coppel and Pia Wilson will be whisked away with composers Nikos Tsakalakos and Julianne Wicke Davis to a 20,000-acre working cattle ranch outside of Sheridan from Feb. 2 to 20 for the 16th annual iteration of this writing colony.

The retreat, made possible through funding from the Ucross Foundation, is one of the 24 residency labs across many creative disciplines that the Sundance Institute offers annually. It has hosted a bevy of notable artists in previous years, including Steven Lutvak and Robert L. Freedman, Tanya Saracho, Lemon Anderson and Branden Jacobs-Jenkins, and will be supervised by Sundance’s artistic director, Philip Himberg, and producing director, Christopher Hibma.

“Our Playwrights and Composers Retreat at Ucross Foundation provides a rare opportunity for theatre artists to put pen to paper, with access to a Sundance Institute dramaturg who can respond to work at an early stage,” said Himberg in a statement. “These impressive and inspiring artists will both contribute to and benefit from the environment of peer mentorship, professional growth and unfettered, unpressured creativity.”

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