ADV – Leaderboard

Alexis Roblan, Michael Mobley, and Robert Axelrod.

Echo Theater Names Winners of Its New Play Competition

They are Alexis Roblan, Michael Mobley, and Robert Axelrod.

LOS ANGELES: The Echo Theater Company is pleased to announce the winners of the company’s 2023 New Play Competition. In total, the company received 497 submissions. Prize committee judges were Boni Alvarez, Sam Catlin, Val Day, Alana Dietze, Tim Sanford, and Jessica Sharzer.

In first place, winning a $1,000 cash prize plus travel and housing to attend rehearsals and a public reading at Atwater Village Theatre, is Alexis Roblan with Javelina. The play follows Ali, who arrives on set in rural Texas weeks into the filming of her first indie feature film, only to find that a deer has been killed because she had written it into her script. Roblan’s other plays include Red Emma & the Mad Monk, Daughters of Lot, You Feel So Far Away Right Now, The Andrew Play, and Samuel. She earned her MFA in Dramatic Writing from USC.

The second place prize of $500 and a rehearsed online reading goes to Michael Mobley for his play Monsters, in which three Black haunted house performers become the monsters they portray, prompting the question: Are monsters made or are they born? Mobley, a 2021-22 member of Echo Theater Company’s National Young Playwrights in Residence Program, is currently a second-year M.F.A. playwriting candidate at the University of Texas at Austin.

Playwright Robert Axelrod is the recipient of the third place, which includes a $250 honorarium and a note session with members of the Echo’s artistic staff for his play Lifeline, which is about Patti, a well-meaning mother who decides to become a volunteer for a suicide hotline. Axelrod, who has worked as a volunteer crisis service counselor with the Trevor Project, the nation’s leading suicide prevention and crisis intervention service for LGBTQ youth, is a past recipient of the Humanitas New Voices fellowship, CineStory TV fellowship, and was part of the recent inaugural class of the Jewish Writer Initiative’s digital storyteller lab. After being named the “Grand Prize” winner of the ScreenCraft Stage Play Competition, his winning play was presented as part of IAMA Theater Company’s 2021 New Works Festival.

Founded in 1997, the Echo Theater Company aims to produce and develop exciting new work.

Support American Theatre: a just and thriving theatre ecology begins with information for all. Please join us in this mission by making a donation to our publisher, Theatre Communications Group. When you support American Theatre magazine and TCG, you support a long legacy of quality nonprofit arts journalism. Click here to make your fully tax-deductible donation today!

ADV – Billboard