ADV – Leaderboard

Orlando Award, McKnight Residency, McNally Award, and More

A roundup of prizes, fellowships, and other recognitions.

MINNEAPOLIS: The Dominic Orlando Fund has named Christian St. Croix the winner of the second annual Dominic Orlando Playwriting Award. St. Croix will receive a $10,000 unrestricted award.

St. Croix is a San Diego-based queer Black playwright whose play We Are the Forgotten Beasts was a finalist for the O’Neill National Playwrights Conference in 2022. His work seeks to craft multidimensional characters with wry humor and truth, blending slice-of-life narratives with magical realism.

Orlando was a playwright, screenwriter, director, and producer who co-founded the Workhaus Collective. He died in November 2021. Orlando was a Jerome Fellow at the Playwrights’ Center, which sponsors the Dominic Orlando Playwriting Award. Finalists for the 2024 award include Aimee Chou and Robert Alexander Wray.

The Playwrights’ Center has awarded Roger Q. Mason the McKnight National Residency and Commission. Mason will travel to Minneapolis to create a new play, engage with local artists, and receive developmental support. They will also receive a $15,000 commission.

Mason is a writer, performer, filmmaker, and educator whose work has been seen at the Circle in the Square Reading Series. They are the recipient of the Dramatists Guild Foundation’s inaugural Catalyst Fellowship and an alum of the Ma-Yi Writers Lab, Page 73’s Interstate 73 Writers Group, and the Primary Stages Writing Cohort. Mason is a member of the faculty at CalArts. They will use the McKnight Residency to develop the performance work Mahogany Hall, about the life and legacy of Lulu White.

The McKnight National Residency and Commission supports an established playwright from outside Minnesota who demonstrates a sustained body of work, commitment, and distinct artistic vision.

Arts Midwest has announced the recipients of more than $1.17 million in Shakespeare in American Communities grants, with approximately $1 million going to 43 professional theatre companies partnering with schools, and $170,000 going to 7 organizations working with students in the juvenile justice system.

Now in its 21st year Shakespeare in American Communities is a theatre program of the National Endowment for the Arts in partnership with Arts Midwest. The program supports high-quality productions and educational activities exploring the work of William Shakespeare in middle schools, high schools, and juvenile justice facilities throughout the United States.

Theater companies choose to either perform a play by Shakespeare or conduct performances that use the works of William Shakespeare as an inspiration. Along with these performances, each company will host educational activities for students to creatively explore Shakespeare’s work and its context. Performances and educational events will take place between Aug. 1, 2024 and July 31, 2025.

Applicants can choose grant awards ranging from $15,000 to $25,000 to help smaller organizations meet the required match more easily. Four new juvenile justice grantees were awarded this year and six new grantees were awarded schools grants.

The juvenile justice grantees include Southwest Shakespeare Company, Gateway Regional Arts Center, Youth Arts: Unlocked, ¡Oye! Group, Drama Club, Junior Players, and Texas Shakespeare Festival.

The schools grantees include Alabama Shakespeare Festival, A Noise Within, Marin Shakespeare Company, San Francisco Shakespeare Festival, The Center for the Arts, Will Geer Theatricum Botanicum, Colorado Shakespeare Festival, Theatreworks Colorado Springs, Hartford Stage, Valley Shakespeare Festival, The Andrew Keegan Theatre Company, GableStage, Theater with a Mission (TWAM), Atlanta Shakespeare Company, Riverside Theatre, Idaho Shakespeare Festival, Actors’ Shakespeare Project, Commonwealth Shakespeare Company, Shakespeare & Company, Theater at Monmouth, Northern Lakes Arts Association, Montana Shakespeare in the Parks, North Carolina Stage Company, the Rose Theater, the Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey, Catskill Mountain Shakespeare, the Acting Company, the Neo-Political Cowgirls, Theatre for a New Audience, Cincinnati Shakespeare Company, Portland Center Stage, Lantern Theater Company, Pennsylvania Shakespeare Festival, Quintessence Theatre, Nashville Shakespeare Festival, Tennessee Shakespeare Company, Shakespeare Dallas, Texas Shakespeare Festival, Utah Shakespeare Festival, Barter Theatre, Seattle Rep, American Players Theatre, and Black Arts MKE.

BOSTON: The New England Foundation for the Arts (NEFA) has announced the 12 recipients of the National Theater Project Creation and Touring awards as well as the 12 recipients of Artist Development awards, totaling nearly $1.3 million.

The National Theater Project (NTP) promotes the development and touring of artist-led, ensemble, and devised theatre works. In addition to essential funding, NTP assembles a national network of producing theatres, presenters, and ensembles.

This year, Creation and Touring grant recipients are each awarded a total of $111,750. A portion of this award supports the creation and development of the new work, while $10,000 of the award is allocated to support the administrative work required for creating and touring. The remainder of the award is for artist-directed allocations to presenters to support artist fees via the NTP Presentation Grant.

The 12 recipients and projects are All My Relations Collective, New York City, Skeleton Canoe; André de Quadros, Boston, The Slaying of Innocence; Candace L Feldman, Lansing, Kans., Many Ways To Raising A Fist; Carrie Rodriguez/Oscar Cásares/Joel Salcido, Austin, Postcards From the Border, Four Larks, Los Angeles, I Saw a Crescent Moon above a Branch of Silver (working title); Goat in the Road, New Orleans, Carlota; Jaronzie Harris, Boston, The Lot Next Door; LIZN’BOW – Liz Ferrer & Bow Ty, Miami, Novelas de Niñas; LubDub Theatre Co, New York City, The Magic Bullet; Monique Martin, New York City, Minty Fresh Circus; Obvious Agency, Philadelphia, Space Opera and Papel Machete, Cambridge, Mass., On the Eve of Abolition | La víspera de la abolición.

NTP finalists who are not awarded the Creation and Touring grant each receive a $10,000 Artist Development Grant. Those recipients are Creative Care Ensemble, Milwaukee, Wisc., Within A Single Rose; Derek Lee McPhatter, Chicago, water riot in beta: a cyber punk rock opera (“water riot” for short); Faultline Ensemble, Halifax, Vt., Counting Pebbles; Latino Theater Company, Los Angeles, New Work by Latino Theater Company; Looking for Lilith Theatre Company, Louisville, Ky., Lifecycle of a Blackberry; Love Force, New York City, Love Force; Nekaa Lab / Sachiyo Takahashi, New York City, Shinnai Meets Puppetry: One Night in Winter & The Peony Lantern; Rising Youth Theatre, Phoenix, Keysmash: A Conversation About Mental Health; Shayok Misha Chowdhury, New York City, Rheology; Sugar Vendil/Isogram, New York City, Antonym: the opposite of nostalgia; The Ume Group, Seattle, The Ume Group’s PASSING; and Wonderlust Productions, Saint Paul, Minn., New work by Wonderlust Productions (working title Caregiver Play Project). Find out more about the recipients here.

PHILADELPHIA: Philadelphia Theatre Company (PTC) has named MK Tuomanen the 2024 Terrence McNally Award winner for their play Night Science. Generously funded by the Terrence McNally Foundation, the award celebrates the life, works, and countless invaluable contributions of American playwright, librettist, and LGBTQ+ trailblazer Terrence McNally. In celebrating McNally’s life and work, the award identifies Philadelphia’s most promising early-career playwrights and champions the city’s incredible artistry, diversity, and talent. Given once every two years, the McNally Award provides a $10,000 cash prize, dramaturgical support, access to the PTC community, and a public reading of the play.  

Among more than 60 submissions, playwright and theatre artist MK Tuomanen (they/them) stood out with their play Night Science. Tuomanen attended the Lecoq School of Movement Theater (Paris, France) and has dedicated 17 years to acting and creating theatre in Philadelphia. Named “Best Theatre Artist” by Philadelphia Magazine in 2015, they are a Jerome Hill Artist Fellow and a Haas Emerging Artist Award recipient. Their plays include Marcus/Emma (or Marcus Garvey and Emma Goldman Have Hot Hot Sex), produced by InterAct Theatre, Peaceable Kingdom, produced by Orbiter 3, and Night Science, first developed with the Wilma Theater through the Virginia B. Toulmin Foundation. Their solo works include Hello! Sadness! and Consider The Cow. Tuomanen’s most recent multimedia exhibit, John Jarboe’s Rose: You Are Who You Eat, is currently on display at the Fabric Workshop Museum through September 2024, and previously showed at the Guggenheim Museum, FringeArts, LaMama (UTR Fest), and Woolly Mammoth. They are a company member of Applied Mechanics and an associated artist with the Bearded Ladies Cabaret.

Night Science dives into the feckless hope of scientific discovery, the dangers of trusting others of your own species, and the fact that any beautiful idea can be turned into a weapon.

This year’s panel of judges included Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright James Ijames; playwright and head of the Theater Program at the Community College of Philadelphia Quinn Eli; Barrymore nominated actor, playwright, and previous McNally Award winner Stephanie Kyung-Sun Walters; director, playwright, and dramaturg Lily Wolff; and PTC drtistic directors Tyler Dobrowsky and Taibi Magar. Judges selected one grand prize as well as three finalists Lumin by Emma Gibson, The Skinny Killer Inside by Genne Murphy, and ass2mouth by Haygen-Brice Walker. 

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