NEW YORK CITY: Playwright Donja R. Love and National Queer Theater (NQT) have named Dominic Colón as the first recipient of the Write It Out! Prize (WIO!) for playwrights living with HIV. Colón’s play The War I Know was selected by Love personally after Love read and evaluated the work of four finalists chosen by readers from NQT. Colón will receive a cash award of $5,000 funded by Tony and Emmy-winning actor Billy Porter. Colón will also receive additional support from GLAAD to hire a dramaturg in order to develop a new work in the coming year.
“Dominic Colón writes with such heart and imagination that his characters leap off the page,” said Love in a statement. “I laughed, gasped, and found myself in conversation with them over the choices they made. They were so alive that I felt I knew them. His stories intimately hold space for people we seldom see onstage. With his work, Colón addresses HIV/AIDS in a way that forces the conversation forward. What an honor to have him as the inaugural WIO! Prize recipient.”
In a conversation available on YouTube, WIO! Prize founder Love and inaugural winner Colón discussed the importance of a playwright’s prize for people living with HIV and the importance of people living with HIV telling their own stories.
“You don’t always control what the blessing in your life will look like,” Colón said in a statement, “but you do control what you do with it! HIV is that blessing! Writing and developing The War I Know has not only been one of the greatest joys of my life, but it has also been a major part of my own healing and liberation. Healing and liberation are my prayer for everyone. That is why I write! That is what theatre at its best can do. That is what we at our best can do! I’m so honored to be the inaugural recipient of the WIO! prize. With the support of WIO!, I can continue to develop The War I Know trilogy so that it can inspire healing and liberation to those who need it! And we ALL M*THERF*CKIN need it!”
Colón is an award-winning writer and actor from the Bronx. Recent plays include Prospect Ave. or The Miseducation of Juni Rodriguez (Rattlestick Theater). Colón’s play The War I Know has been developed by the Latinx Playwrights Circle, LAByrinth Theater Company (2021 Barn Series), and SOLFEST (2021). Colón’s short play Where’s Our Angels? was a recipient of the 2021 Latinx Playwrights Circle & Pregones/PRTT Greater Good Commission. Selected directing credits include: The War I Know (LAByrinth), Eduardo Machado’s Marquitas (Rattlestick Theater/Pride Plays), and Episodes 4-6 of The MTA Radio Plays at Rattlestick Theater. Colón’s half-hour television pilot Papi made the inaugural Latinx TV List, a curated list of the 10 most promising pilots created by Latinx writers. Colón was recently selected to be a part of the inaugural cohort of the Sundance Uprise Grant. Colón is currently a staff writer on the upcoming Netflix series Pink Marine.
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