PORTLAND, ORE.: Portland Center Stage has commissioned four new plays as part of the PCS Remix: Commissions program, from playwrights Brittany K. Allen, Christina Anderson, Christopher Chen, and Anya Pearson.
“I am over the moon with joy to have these four brilliant, visionary playwrights under commission at PCS,” artistic director Marissa Wolf said in a statement. “As we wrestle with the continued challenges our field faces during the pandemic, I’m thrilled to invest in the voices of these four playwrights.”
Throughout the development process for these new scripts, PCS will offer the community opportunities to engage with the commissioned playwrights. The playwrights will also be featured in roundtable discussions about the creative process.
Allen’s commission is her second collaboration with PCS, following the 2019 premiere of her play Redwood, in which she also starred. Allen stated of her new work, “The play I’m writing is in early stages still, but it’s to do with socialist utopia, intersectional coalition building, the ways we find and nurture community as adults, and, most definitely, Black joy.” Allen is an alum of the Public Theater’s Emerging Writers Group and is a member of Ensemble Studio Theatre’s Youngblood program.
Anderson, who is best known for her play How to Catch Creation, said she looks forward to “creating a new piece that reexamines what it means to ‘stay at home’ in our present day.” Her work has been produced at the Goodman Theatre, the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, and Yale Repertory Theatre, among others, and has appeared multiple times on the Kilroys List.
Chen has collaborated with Wolf on multiple occasions and said he “couldn’t be more thrilled to reunite.” His work has been seen at Crowded Fire Theater, Soho Rep, and San Francisco Playhouse, among others. He is the recipient of an Obie Award for his play Caught.
Pearson’s short play Three Love Songs was commissioned by PCS for their Play at Home series at the beginning of the pandemic. She said she is “honored to be part of this amazing and formidable lineup of BIPOC playwrights.” She was recently named a Hodder Fellow at Princeton University’s Lewis Center for the Arts. Her play The Measure of Innocence was named to the Kilroys List in 2020.
Portland Center Stage was established in 1988 and produces a mix of classic, contemporary, and world premiere productions.
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