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Adanna Paul and Savannah Miller.

Young Playwrights’ Theater Names First Playwrights In Progress

Adanna Paul and Savannah Miller will be the first participants in the Young Playwrights in Progress program, receiving readings in 2021.

WASHINGTON, D.C.: Young Playwrights’ Theater (YPT) has announced that Savannah Miller and Adanna Paul are the first two young playwrights selected to participate in YPT’s 2020-21 Young Playwrights in Progress new-play development program. The playwrights, selected from submissions throughout D.C., Maryland, and Virginia, will receive monthly script advising from YPT artistic director Farah Lawal Harris and two virtual workshop readings, the first on Feb. 1-2, 2021 and the second on May 3-4, 2021. Free tickets to the readings can be reserved online.

“I think for those of us in D.C. who are playwrights, it’s definitely difficult to get your work developed, and it’s hard to get your foot in the door,” said Harris in a statement. “So this is an opportunity for folks to be able to take their time
and work on a script and get feedback in a way that’s not pressure-filled. It’s using our resources to teach you what we know about playwriting to enhance your script and get your work out there.”

Harris launched the program in May 2020, calling for subscriptions from young playwrights between 14 and 24 who have an original script for consideration for long-term development. The goal is to give playwrights access to a supportive development process, especially playwrights from historically oppressed communities.

Savannah Miller’s original play The House follows two brothers coming to terms with their family history during the sale of their childhood home. The play received a staged reading at Dartmouth College in 2018 and will have public readings on Feb. 1 and May 3, 2021. Miller (she/her) is a theatre major and English and Russian double minor at Dartmouth College in New Hampshire. She has had two original plays presented through the Dartmouth College Department of Theater: The House (Eleanor Frost Playwriting Contest Winner, 2018) and Trivia Champion (2019). After Dartmouth, Miller plans to attend graduate school for playwriting and pursue a career as a writer and arts educator.

Adanna Paul’s one-woman play, Matayanda, delves into the mind of a young woman and her imaginary friend to explore how Black girls cope with trauma. Paul’s play will have public readings on Feb. 2 and May 4, 2021. Paul (she/her) is a recent graduate of Howard University, where she earned a BFA in theatre arts with a concentration in acting. While at Howard, Paul was a Fulbright Program semi-finalist. She was also a Howard University Research Symposium 2018 winner for her thesis Bound to Post-Black: Examining and Redesigning Tenets of the Post-Black Art Movement (published in the March 2020 issue of Evoke: A Historical, Theoretical, and Cultural Analysis of Africana Dance and Theatre). Her one-person show, Base A, was performed in The Dawn Showcase at Woolly Mammoth Theatre. Most recently, Paul performed in The Agitators (Mosaic Theater Company of D.C., 2019) and served as an actor, teaching artist, and audio engineer with the National Players Tour 70.

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