This year’s Jam! The 2019-20 New Georges Jam is co-led by Estefania Fadul, Julia May Jonas and Sarah Einspanier, and boasts these members, too: Bleu Beckford-Burrell, Lydia Blaisdell, Tasha Gordon-Solmon, Deepali Gupta, Miranda Haymon, Sarah Hughes, Dara Malina, Rebecca Martinez, Daaimah Mubashshir, Eli Nixon, Jolene Noelle, Caitlin Ryan O’Connell, Taylor Reynolds, Christina Roussos, Zarina Shea, Charly Evon Simpson and Caitlin Sullivan, returning for a second year (or third or fourth — you can Jam as long as you’re finding it useful!). Meet them below.
Bleu Beckford-Burrell is a first-generation Jamaican-American actor/playwright. Born and raised in New York City, she works for a non-profit organization where she teaches acting to teens, as well as writes and directs plays. Her M.F.A in acting was received at Rutgers University. Some credits include Doubt as Mrs. Muller, Uncle Vanya as Marina, Intimate Apparel as Mrs. Dickson. NYC credits include Nelly as Jenny, Hobart’s Dilemma as Eileen, Seen Her as Yara. She is the 2018 Runner Up for the Yale Drama Series Prize, is a former member of the Obie Award-winning Ensemble Studio Theatre playwrights group Youngblood, was a Page 73 2017 summer resident, and was commissioned for EST’s 2019 One-Act Play Festival. Her plays include P.S.365 (showcased in EST’s workshop series and The National Black Theatre’s Keep the Soul Alive reading series), Lyons Pride (EST Bloodwork Reading Series, Finalist for 2018 PWC New Voices Fellowship, Finalist of 2018 BAPF, Finalist for 2018 Princess Grace Award) and La Race (featured in EST 2018 Bloodwork Reading Series). Some of her short plays produced at EST Brunch series and play festivals include: Time, Neutered, M.D.M.A., Forecon, and Masque.
Lydia Blaisdell holds an MFA from the Michener Center for Writers at UT Austin. and is an alumnus of Youngblood at Ensemble Studio Theater. She Buried the Pistol, her first (and only) solo piece will be produced by the New York-based company, THE HEARTH, for the WOW Festival at La Jolla Playhouse in October 2019. She received a Visionary Playwright Commission from Theater Masters in 2018. Bear Eats Bear, her immersive apocalyptic audio piece, has toured to Toronto, Brooklyn, Charlotte, Minneapolis, and Austin, TX (as a Rude Fusion Project of the Rude Mechs). She’s been granted residencies at Yaddo, Marble House Project, and Ucross.
Sarah Einspanier is a playwright from Dallas, TX. Select plays include Lunch Bunch (Clubbed Thumb’s Summerworks), I LOVE SEAN (Playwrights Realm Writing Fellow), The Convent of Pleasure (Cherry Lane’s Mentor Project with Sheila Callaghan), and MADONNA col BAMBINO created with composer Deepali Gupta and director Caitlin Sullivan (Ars Nova’s ANT Fest and the New Ohio’s Ice Factory, curated by New Georges). Her work has also been developed and presented by Ars Nova’s Play Group, Clubbed Thumb’s Early Career Writers’ Group, the New Georges Jam, a New Georges Special Residency, and Williamstown Theatre Festival’s Directing Studio. She has been a resident at the Millay Colony, Cape Cod Theatre Project (Noel Coward Foundation Writer in Residence), SPACE on Ryder Farm, and Sewanee Writers’ Conference (Horton Foote Scholar with Naomi Iizuka), and has participated in Erik Ehn’s annual Texas Silent Writing Retreat. Upcoming: House Plant at New York Theatre Workshop’s Next Door.
Estefanía Fadul is a Colombian-born, New Hampshire-raised, NYC-based director and producer. Recent projects include the world premieres of Christina Quintana’s Azul (Southern Rep) and Scissoring (INTAR), Stefan Ivanov’s The Same Day (Sfumato Theatre, Bulgaria) and Óye Oyá by Rebecca Martínez & Rodolfo Ortega (Milagro). Other credits include James Anthony Tyler’s Pranayama (Juilliard), Kate Hamill’s Pride and Prejudice (Heritage Theatre Festival) and Agent 355 by Preston Max Allen and Jessica Kahkoska (Chautauqua). She has developed new plays and musicals off-Broadway and regionally at the Playwrights’ Realm, Long Wharf, The Drama League, LPAC, and Hi-Arts, among others. Estefanía is an alumna of the National Directors Fellowship at the Eugene O’Neill Theatre Center/NNPN, the Drama League Directors Project, the Foeller Fellowship at the Williamstown Theatre Festival, the Van Lier Fellowship at Repertorio Español, the NALAC Leadership Institute, and the Civilians’ R&D Group. She is a member of the Latinx Theatre Commons steering committee, the Lincoln Center Theatre Directors Lab, and SDC. BA: Vassar College. www.estefaniafadul.com
Tasha Gordon-Solmon’s plays have been developed and produced at the Humana Festival of New American Plays, Clubbed Thumb, Northern Stage, Ars Nova, Perry Mansfield New Works Festival, Dixon Place, INTAR, New Georges, Sun Valley Center for the Arts / Company of Fools, The Tank, The Flea and the 24 Hour Musicals.Directing credits include EST, The Tank, The Flea, Dixon Place, INTAR, The Brick, Pipeline Theatre, InViolet, Brooklyn Museum, Columbia University, NYU, Brooklyn Generator, Crashbox Theater Company, The Cell, Sound Bites Festival, Fire This Time Festival, New York Fringe Festival, and the O’Neill Young Playwrights Festival. Tasha is a recipient of the Dramatist Guild Fellowship, a Puffin Foundation Grant, two VCCA residencies, and commissions from Actors Theatre of Louisville and Project Y. She is a member of the BMI Workshop and Directors Lab West, and an alumna of the Ars Nova Playgroup and Clubbed Thumb Early Career Writers Group.
Deepali Gupta is a writer and performer. Her work explores themes of mania and insanity, and their relationship to the feminine body. She makes work in an attempt to unravel the warped weave of narratives surrounding mood disorder and neurodivergence. She has developed or presented work with Ars Nova, The Public Theater, The Bushwick Starr, and others. She is an affiliated artist of Target Margin Theater and The Civilians, a member of the New Georges Jam, and a Makers Lab resident with Ars Nova. B.A. Brown University (Weston Award, Writing for Performance); M.F.A. Tisch.
Miranda Haymon is a Princess Grace Award/Honoraria-winning writer, director and deviser of performance originally from Boston. Her recent projects include Mondo Tragic at The National Black Theatre, Erotophobia at Fordham University, and Eclipsed at Dartmouth College where she co-taught Contemporary Theater. She is an Artist-in-Residence at Roundabout Theatre Company; previously as the 2017/18 Directing Fellow, currently the Artistic Development Associate. Miranda is Resident Director at The Tank, a New Georges Affiliate Artist and 2019 Audrey Resident, a Space on Ryder Farm 2019 Creative Resident, member of the Lincoln Center Theatre Directors Lab, the Wingspace Mentorship Program, a 2019/20 New York Theatre Workshop 2050 Directing Fellow, a Manhattan Theatre Club Directing Fellow, and a former Allen Lee Hughes Directing Fellow at Arena Stage. Miranda is a graduate of Wesleyan University where she double majored in German Studies and Theater and was awarded the Rachel Henderson Theater Prize in Directing. Upcoming: Everybody (Sarah Lawrence College), Exception to the Rule (Roundabout Underground). www.mirandahaymon.com
Sarah Hughes is a director and producer of theater and new media. She’s developed performances with artists such as Eliza Bent, Julia May Jonas / Nellie Tinder, MJ Kaufman, Sibyl Kempson, McFeely Sam Goodman, Chana Porter, Deepali Gupta, Cara Scarmack, Alaina Ferris, and Pablo Helguera. With Graham Sack and Geoff Sobelle she’s created VR & AR pieces for Tribeca Film Festival, New York Theatre Workshop, and The New York Times. She’s presented work at Abrons Arts Center, BAM Next Wave, The Bushwick Starr, Japan Society, Columbia University, and Prelude, among others. Sarah worked with Elevator Repair Service from 2007-14, assistant directing Gatz, The Select, Arguendo, Shuffle, and Fondly, Collette Richland, and she was Co-Artistic Producer of Target Margin Theater from 2015-17. She co-teaches a Contemporary Theater class at Dartmouth College, is a New Georges Affiliated Artist, a Target Margin Associated Artist, a 2016-17 Civilians R&D Lab Member, a Clubbed Thumb 2017-18 Directing Fellow, a 2018 New Georges Audrey Resident, and a 2018-2020 WP Theater Directors Lab member. www.sarahcameronhughes.com
Julia May Jonas is currently developing ALL LONG TRUE AMERICAN STORIES (a 5-play cycle reimagining contemporary classic American-male-experience plays for other people (mostly women) including the plays A Woman Among Women, in which Kim Sparrow is Prey to Unfortunate Circumstances, Problems Between Sisters, and We Used to Wear Bonnets & Get High All the Time. Jonas recently developed Michigan Murders with Meghan Finn and composer Brian Cavanagh-Strong as part of the New Works Initiative at Montclair State University. Other recent work includes Emily Climbs (Machine Mechant), Raise Your Voice in Medieval Counterpoint, Evelyn, For Artists Only, and Your Own Personal Exegesis. Her work has or is currently being presented/developed with JKB Theater at Skidmore College, NACL, Great Plains Theatre Festival, The Bushwick Starr, PRELUDE Festival, New Georges, Target Margin Theater, Incubator Arts Center, The International Revolutions Festival, The Brick, Dixon Place, PS122 (with TerraNova), HERE, Chashama, BAX, International Theater Society of Vietnam and others. Founder and Artistic Director of Nellie Tinder, she has been granted support by The Mental Insight Foundation, NYSCA and The Rockefeller Foundation. 2018/19 member or Ars Nova Playgroup, 2018 Artist-In-Residence with Target Margin Theater, 2016 Audrey Resident, Co-Leader of The New Georges Jam, New Georges Affiliated Artist. MFA: Columbia University. She teaches playwriting at Skidmore College.
Dara Malina is a director of theatre, performance, opera and video. Past credits include Alexis Roblan’s Ours at Dixon Place, Daaimah Mubashshir’s Live Essay at New Ohio Theatre’s American AF festival, and Jillian Walker’s Structure/Race at JACK. Original works include This is a Protest of What Happened (The Brick), Clarice Lispector’s The Hour of the Star (Connelly Theater), Müller’s Hamletmachine, Lilith (Columbia Stages), Blanche in a Box, Hysteria Project/Beautiful Women Eating Cake (chashama), Les Boudoirs des Deux Femmes (chashama; Bushwick SITE Festival), and The Post-Structuralist Utopia: Now, with Cats! (chashama; Ugly Ducking Presse 2015 Emergency INDEX). She has collaborated with playwrights at EST, The Tank, Dixon Place, JACK, The Flea, Chez Bushwick, New Ohio, and Rattlestick. She recently directed Much Ado About Nothing through the lens of 1970s second-wave feminism. Next, she will direct Machinal at PACE University (March 2019). MFA Theatre Directing, Columbia University. www.daramalina.com
Rebecca Martinez is a Brooklyn-based director, choreographer, deviser, and ensemble member of Sojourn Theatre. Recent projects: [Director] Miss You Like Hell (Baltimore Center Stage), Wolf at the Door (Milagro Theatre, NNPN rolling world premiere), Anna in the Tropics (Fine Arts Center, Colorado Springs, Henry Award for Outstanding Direction) Songs About Trains (Radical Evolution, Ice Factory). Rebecca has worked with INTAR, Working Theater, Signature Theatre, Manhattan Theatre Club, the Lark, The Playwrights Realm, New Dramatists, the 52nd Street Project, Brave New World Repertory Theatre, and Artists Repertory Theatre among others. Member of: Sol Project Collective, Lincoln Center Theater Directors Lab, INTAR’s Unit52, SDCF Observer, Latinx Theatre Commons Advisory Committee, 2019 Audrey Resident, New Georges Jam, 2018-2020 WP Lab, 2017 Drama League Directing Fellow, Member of SDC. Awards: four Portland, Oregon Drammy Awards; Lilla Jewel Award. Rebeccamartinez.org
Daaimah Mubashshir is based in NYC. Awards include a 2018 Audrey Residency (New Georges), a MacDowell Colony Fellowship, a Catwalk Institute Residency, and a Foundation of Contemporary Arts Emergency Grant. Published works include The Zero Loop (No Tokens Journal), Come with Me – Solve for X in The Occasional 2, edited by Will Arbery (53rd State Press), The Immeasurable Want of Light (3 Hole Press), and Molasses and A Blue Coat – Kenyon Review Online June Issue. Selected full length plays include The Immeasurable Want of Light (3 Hole Press), Room Enough (Magic Time @ Judson Church, Clubbed Thumb), The Chronicles of Cardigan and Khente (Soho Rep) and Emily Black is Total Gift (New Georges).
Eli Nixon builds portals and gives guided tours to places that don’t yet exist, or already exist but call for DIY translation. They are a genderqueer clown, a cardboard constructionist, and a maker of plays, puppets, parades, pageants, suitcase theaters, and low-tech spectaculah- on their own, and in collaboration with artists, dancers, and musicians of all ages, abilities and persuasions. Their performances and installations occur in galleries and garages, on street corners and stages. For 20 years, Eli has also been creating theater with museums, schools, senior centers, and addiction recovery and mental health programs. Eli’s current creative efforts include identifying opportunities to dismantle Manifest Destiny and white supremacy, foster intra and interspecies kinship, probe the ethics, perils and possibilities of anthropomorphization, and co-parent a 10 year old human. Eli graduated from Brown University’s MFA in Writing for Performance program in 2018.
Jolene Noelle is an NYC-based dramaturg with Colorado roots, specializing in developing and generating new work through physical, collaborative, and research-fueled means. In addition, she has been investigating the efficacy and application of the horror genre on stage, writing and producing a number of horror works, including co-founding Traumaturgy Productions and directing the company’s newest plays Remains, Sunset Park, and Trypophobia. Recent dramaturgy projects include: Dramaturg on Wendy, Peter, Peter, Wendy written by Joshua Conkel for Single Carrot Theatre in collaboration with Baltimore-based LGBTQ+ communities; Story Consultancy on the upcoming webseries Tuesday Nights, Associate Director and Dramaturg on Emmy award-winning comedian Ted Greenberg’s one-man show ACE (Philadelphia, NYC); Dramaturgy on Julie (25f), a new adaptation of Strindberg’s Miss Julie (Colorado Mesa University); Dramaturgy on an original adaptation of Clarice Lispector’s novella The Hour of the Star (Connelly Theater, NYC). Program Director: Theaterlab. MFA: Columbia University. shinyobjectsdramaturgy.com
Caitlin Ryan O’Connell is a freelance director and teaching artist based in Brooklyn. Recent credits include King Philip’s Head is Still On That Pike Just Down the Road by Daniel Glenn at Clubbed Thumb Summerworks and Twin Size Beds by Sam Max at The Public’s Under the Radar Festival. She has directed and developed work at Bushwick Starr, Ars Nova, The Lark, Roundabout, Fault Line Theatre, Actors Theatre of Louisville, Trinity Repertory Company, The Denver Center and Clubbed Thumb. She teaches at NYU’s Playwrights Horizons Theater School, Powerhouse Theater Training Company, The Eugene O’Neill Theater Center, Ridgewood Bushwick & Roundtable Senior Centers, and with the International Theatre Project in Rwanda. Caitlin was a 2018 New Georges Audrey Resident, a former Clubbed Thumb directing fellow, and a former Actors Theatre directing apprentice. BA Wellesley College, MFA Brown University.
Taylor Reynolds is a New York-based director from Chicago and one of the Producing Artistic Leaders of The Movement Theatre Company in Harlem. She has worked as a director, assistant, and collaborator with companies including Clubbed Thumb, Radical Evolution, Atlantic Acting School, NY Madness, Ally Theatre Company, JAG Productions, The United Solo Festival, and The 24 Hour Plays. Select directing credits: Plano by Will Arbery, Allond(r)a by Gina Femia, Songs About Trains (co-directed with Rebecca Martinez), Think Before You Holla (creator/deviser), An Informal Presentation…(Or, BURN) by Pascale Smith, Food by Rhonda Marie Khan, Accidental Burlesque by Gina Femia (developed through the Audrey Residency at New Georges). She is a member of NY Madness and the Lincoln Center Theater Directors Lab, a New Georges Affiliated Artist, and a 2017-2018 Clubbed Thumb Directing Fellow. BFA, Carnegie Mellon University. iamtaylorreynolds.com
Christina Roussos is a director and teaching artist. She has worked with Clubbed Thumb (‘16/’17 Directing Fellow), the New Georges Jam, and Theater Breaking Through Barriers (Associate Director ‘9-’12). Her work has appeared at the Kennedy Center, Rattlestick Theater Jam, Judson Church, and on Norwegian radio. She was a ‘15/’16 teaching fellow at Brooklyn College, and teaches project building and character creation in the MFA Visual Narrative program at the School of Visual Arts. BA Emerson College, MFA Brooklyn College. More info at: christinaroussos.com
Zarina Shea‘s plays include Just up the road, slightly; I Am Here; The Part Where Peter Leaves; Stella Stein; and The Peggy Project. Her work has been produced and/or developed by Berkeley Rep, Clubbed Thumb, Two River Theater, New Georges, New York Theatre Workshop, JACK, and Actors Theatre of Louisville, among others. She has been a resident at Berkeley Rep’s Ground Floor, the Ucross Foundation, and Norm’s Fish Camp at Tofte Lake. She is an alum of Clubbed Thumb’s Early Career Writers Group and a member of The New Georges Jam, and is a recipient of a Clubbed Thumb Short Play Commission and Brown University’s David Wickham Playwriting Award. Zarina has performed at the Williamstown Theatre Festival, Actors Theatre of Louisville, Trinity Rep, and Ars Nova, among others. BA: University of Chicago, MFA in Acting: Brown University, MFA in Playwriting: Brooklyn College. www.zarinashea.com
Charly Evon Simpson’s plays include Behind the Sheet,
Jump, form of a girl unknown, it’s not a trip it’s a journey, and more. Her work has been seen and/or developed with Ensemble Studio Theatre, The Lark, P73, The Eugene O’Neill Theater Center, PlayMakers Repertory Company, Chautauqua Theater Company, Salt Lake Acting Company, and others. She is a recipient of the Lanford Wilson Award and was nominated for the John Gassner Award. She has received commissions from the EST/Sloan Project, MTC/Sloan, The Movement/NYU and The Flea. Charly is currently a member of WP Theater’s 2018-2020 Lab and The New Georges Jam. She’s a former member of SPACE on Ryder Farm’s The Working Farm, Clubbed Thumb’s Early Career Writers’ Group, Ensemble Studio Theatre’s Youngblood, and Pipeline Theatre Company’s PlayLab. She received her BA from Brown University, a master’s in Women’s Studies from University of Oxford, New College, and her MFA in Playwriting from Hunter College. www.charlyevonsimpson.com
Caitlin Sullivan is a New York-based director and theatre-maker. Directing credits range from collaboratively created new plays and experimental musicals to solo performances and large-scale, site-specific events. Caitlin’s recent work has been presented by Ars Nova, the New Ohio, New Georges, Danspace, Fusebox Festival, the Drama League, On the Boards and the Seattle Rep. She is Associate Director of Hundred Days and The Lucky Ones (by The Bengsons and Sarah Gancher, dir. Anne Kauffman). Before moving to New York, Caitlin co-founded and served as Artistic Director of Seattle’s critically acclaimed Satori Group. She is a graduate of Williams College, an alum of the Drama League Directors Project and Next Stage Artist Residency, a New Georges Affiliated Artist and a current Clubbed Thumb Directing Fellow.
Want to join The Jam? Watch for application season in spring 2020.
The Jam was founded here in 2010 by playwright Lucy Alibar and directors Jess Chayes and Portia Krieger, and its alumni are a happening bunch! They are: Tara Ahmadinejad, Lucy Alibar, Sofia Alvarez, Kathleen Amshoff, Helen Banner, Kate Benson, Eliza Bent, Mary Birnbaum, Rachel Bonds, Katherine Brook, Charise Castro Smith, Adrienne Campbell-Holt, Jess Chayes, Jihan Crowther, Kim Davies, LaShea Delaney, Lee Sunday Evans, Meghan Finn, Morgan Gould, Morgan Green, Dipika Guha, Mary Elizabeth Hamilton, Lindsay Joelle, MJ Kaufman, Krista Knight, Portia Krieger, Sarah Krohn, Kristine Haruna Lee, Caroline V. McGraw, Anna Moench, Louisa Proske, Colette Robert, Celine Rosenthal, Mia Rovegno, Normandy Sherwood, Caitlin Saylor Stephens, Lisa Szolovits, Kate Tarker, Danya Taymor, Nicole A. Watson, Emma Weinstein, Kat Yen and Pirronne Yousefzadeh