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Tuesday, December 18 , 2018, 10:15 am | Partly Cloudy 61º


PlayFest Santa Barbara Selects Diane Grant as Honoree Playwright

Diane Grant has been selected as PlayFest Santa Barbara’s 5th Annual Festival of New Plays Honoree Playwright for her play, The Last of the Daytons.

Finalists for the festival were Paula Cizmar for her play, Strawberry; Donna Hoke for Brilliant Works of Art; Steve Karp for Reunion, and Laura Schmidt for The Eleventh Chapter. Fifty-seven plays and musicals were submitted from around the globe. The honoree and finalists hail from California, Canada, Minnesota and New York.

The Last of the Daytons will be presented as a staged reading at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 28, at Center Stage Theatre, upstairs in Paseo Nuevo. The reading will immediately be followed by a moderated audience talk-back.

Grant is an award-winning playwright and screenwriter, whose film, Too Much Oregano won the Cannes Film Festival Jury Prize. She is cofounder of Toronto’s Redlight Theatre, the first professional women’s theater in Canada. Her plays have been produced and published in the U.S. and Canada.

Grant is a member of the Female Playwright Initiative, the Dramatists Guild, the Playwrights Guild of Canada, the International Center for Women Playwrights, and is the former vice chair of the Los Angeles Alliance of Los Angeles Playwrights. Her full-length plays include The Piaggi Suite, Has Anybody Here Seen Roy?, Sunday Dinner and A Dog’s Life.

Grant will be in residence during the rehearsal and presentation of The Last of the Daytons. A panel discussion with her and other festival playwrights is planned for the festival at 10:30 a.m. Sunday, Jan. 29.

At 10 a.m., Jan. 28, festival partners Dramatic Women and Speaking of Stories are presenting Breakfast with Smartasses, Five Sassy Plays by Five Sassy Women Writers. The five playwrights for these short pieces are Ellen Anderson, Tania Israel, Brooke Mackenzie, Shannon Noel and Chelsea Sutton. These original plays are presented as staged readings and are directed by Maggie Mixsell.

Following the readings, there will be breakfast “goodies” and mimosas to accompany the post performance discussion with the playwrights, actors and director.

At 1:30 p.m. Saturday festival partners, DramaDogs, will conduct an acting workshop lead by co-artistic directors E. Bonnie Lewis and Ken Gilbert that will focus on “physicalizing the text,” using elements of the honoree play, The Last of the Daytons.

All festival events are currently scheduled at Center Stage Theatre. For more information, visit www.playfestsantabarbara.org. For ticket information contact Center Stage box office, 963-0408, or visit http://www.centerstagetheater.org.

— R. Michael Gros for PlayFest Santa Barbara.


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