Proscenium Live 2016

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All photos by David Kinder. 

Supported by a generous grant awarded by the Donald A. Strauss Foundation, Proscenium Journal partnered with Portland Shakespeare Project to hold the second annual Proscenium Live Festival of New Works. This four-night, free festival featured staged readings of six new plays by playwrights Amy Freed, Ellen Margolis, C.S. Whitcomb, Wei He, and Simon Fill, performed by 20 local actors. Over 600 people attended this festival, and several participated in post-show discussions with the playwrights, which were held after every performance.


Day One, August 18Dracula’s Father by C.S. Whitcomb


Day Two, August 19: An Evening of New One-Acts
Feauturing Shrew! by Amy Freed, Night Visits by Simon Fill, and My Birthday 

Shrew! by Amy Freed
Directed by Michael Mendelson


Night Visits by Simon Fill
Directed by Adrienne Flagg


My Birthday Party by Wei He
Directed by Addriene Flagg


Day Three, August 20Them That Are Perfect by Amy Freed
Directed by Jon Kretzu**


Day Four, August 21
Pericles Wet by Ellen Margolis
Directed by Matthew Zrebski


Tobias Anderson*
Orion J. Bradshaw*
Joe Costa*
Robert Hamm*
Gavin Hoffman*
Chris Karczmar*
Michael Mendelson*
Ben Newman*
Ariel Puls*
Amanda Soden*
Ryan Tresser*
Lolly Ward*
Danielle Weathers*
Don Burns
Shannon Mastel
Lucy Paschall
Rebecca James Ridenour
Helena Fisher-Welsh
Crystal Ann Muñoz

*Member of Actors’ Equity Association

**Member, Stage Directors and Choreographers Society

Proscenium Now Available in PRINT!

COax6gTVAAAfTQwIn response to our demand for making Proscenium available in print, we are thrilled to announce that Proscenium is now an online and in-print publication! Starting now, ALL issues of Proscenium Journal are available to order in-print starting at only $16. Click here to choose an issue you would like to purchase. And of course, all issues are still available to read for free online. 

And if you would like to stay updated about all things Proscenium, including the release of new issues, our new works festival, and more, subscribe to our mailing list

Announcing the fifth play for our third issue!

photo2It is our great pleasure to announce that “Between Two Nevermores” by Sherod Santos will be the fifth play published in the third issue of Proscenium Journal!

Poet, playwright, and translator, Sherod Santos is the author of six books of poetry, most recently “The Intricated Soul: New and Selected Poems.” In 2005 he published “Greek Lyric Poetry: A New Translation,” for which he received the Umhoefer Prize in Translation. Mr. Santos has received fellowships from the Ingram Merrill Foundation, the Guggenheim foundation and the National Endowment for the Arts. In 1999 he received an Award for Literary Excellence from the American Academy of Arts and Letters. Productions of his plays include: 10-minute play, “Star,” Algonquin Theatre, New York City, 2010; one-act play, “Coffee Shop,” The Flint Michigan Play Festival, 2010; full-length play, “Lives of the Pigeons,” The Side Project, Chicago, 2013; two-minute play, “Beginning of the Revolution,” Royal Court Theatre: “Grit,” 2015. His work has also appeared in literary journals and magazines including The Antioch Review, The New Yorker, The Paris Review, The Nation, Poetry, The Yale Poetry Review, The American Poetry Review, The New York Times Book Review, The Kenyon Review andParnassus Books. His book, “The Pilot Star Elegies,” was a finalist for the 1999 National Book Award and he is a recipient of the The Pushcart Prize. Congrats, Sherod!

We will be announcing the final play tomorrow — stay tuned!

Announcing the fourth play for our third issue!

Screen Shot 2015-08-27 at 4.23.20 PMWe are excited to announce that “My Birthday Party” by Wei He will be the fourth play published in the third issue of Proscenium Journal! 

Wei He is a bilingual playwright and fiction writer who grew up in Inner Mongolia, China and now lives in Cleveland, Ohio. She holds an MFA degree in Dramatic Writing from Carnegie Mellon University. Her fiction, poetry and plays in English and Mandarin have been published internationally in the United States, Mainland China and Taiwan. Her screenplay, “Paper Dragonfly,” will be published by China Film Press next year. And she is proud of her secret recipe of the “Sand-Wei-ch.”

Congrats Wei He!

Stay tuned — we will be announcing the last two plays in the next few days. 

Announcing the third play for our third issue!

We ame with a tiere delighted to be publishing Aurin Squire for a second time in Proscenium Journal! Aurin’s play “Defacing Michael Jackson,” a winner of the Samuel French Off-Off Broadway Festival, will be the third play published in our third issue. 

Aurin Squire is an award-winning playwright, screenwriter, and reporter. He is a two-time recipient of the 2014 Lecomte du Nouy Prize from Lincoln Center and a recent graduate of The Juilliard School and its Lila Acheson Wallace Playwright Fellowship. In 2014-2015 he has fellowships at The Dramatists Guild of America, National Black Theatre, Brooklyn Arts Exchange, and the Royal Court Theatre’s US Writers’ Residency in London. Squire is the winner of the 2014 Act One Writing Prize Lincoln Center Theatre. He graduated with honors from Northwestern University and has been a reporter for the Miami Herald, The New Republic, Talking Points Memo, ESPN, and Brooklyn Rail. Squire’s enjoys long-term collaboration and new challenges. There’s not enough room to include everything, but several of his projects have received multiple development and productions around the world. His comedy “Obama-ology” was developed at Juilliard New Play Festival in September 2014, before receiving a critically acclaimed European premiere at London’s Finborough Theatre in December 2014, and being remounted in May 2015 at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts. “To Whom It May Concern,” a dark comedy won LGBT awards for best play and best playwriting at Fresh Fruit Festival before being optioned and remounted off-Broadway at Arclight Theatre. “Freefalling” was first produced at Barrington Stage, earning a Fiat Lux Award with the Catholic Church in New York, was published at Dramatist Play Service, and won the grand prize in InspiraTO Theatre’s International Play Festival in Toronto. Defacing Michael Jackson won Samuel French International Play Contest, was published as a one-act, expanded into a full-length play that was workshopped at Nuyorican Poets Cafe, and earned an Act One Prize from Lincoln Center in 2014. His play “African Americana” started at Brooklyn Arts Exchange before being produced at Theatre 503 in London. In the fields of film and multimedia, Squire adapted the novel ‘Velocity’ into a screenplay for Moxie Pictures, and has served as a writer/producer for numerous web and multimedia projects. Squire wrote “Dreams of Freedom,” the installation video about Jewish immigrants in the 20th century for the National Museum of American Jewish History in Philadelphia. “Dreams” won 3 national museum awards and is currently in the permanent exhibit at NMAJH. Squire’s plays, movies, and multimedia art has been produced across Europe, the United States, Great Britain, and Canada. His plays have been developed and produced at venues like Ars Nova, Abingdon Theatre, Cherry Lane, Lincoln Center Lab, National Hispanic Cultural Center. He lives in New York City. Welcome Back, Aurin! 

We will be announcing the three other plays later this week — Stay tuned!

Announcing the second play for our third issue!

We are ttolchinskypichrilled to announce that “Clear” by David E. Tolchinsky will be the second play published in
the third issue of Proscenium Journal!

David E. Tolchinsky is the Chairman of Northwestern University’s Department of Radio-TV-Film and Founder/Director of Northwestern University School of Communication’s MFA in Writing for Screen+Stage. Some of his work centers on teen subcultures, particularly in relation to social decay. He is also interested in horror, mental illness, and psychiatrists. He has been commissioned by such studios as Touchstone/Disney, MGM, and Ivan Reitman’s Montecito Pictures to write screenplays, and his feature film Girl (screenwriter, associate producer) is distributed by Sony. He has designed the sound for interactive computer environments and video installations seen internationally, and was nominated in 2003 for a Motion Picture Sound Editors Guild Golden Reel Award for his sound design for Dolly. He has cocurated gallery exhibits including The Horror Show in 2009 at Dorsky Gallery Curatorial Programs in New York City which explored horror in film, video, installation, photography, sculpture and painting and which was featured as a “Voice Choice for Art” in The Village Voice and on their blog, and which was accompanied by a 32-page catalog. He co-produced Debra Tolchinsky’s 2011 feature documentary, Fast Talk which investigated the accelerated speed of argumentation in college debate and which is available on iTunes. More recently, he published “Where’s the Rest of Me?” a reflective essay about Spalding Gray and monologue writing in Paraphilia Magazine and cocurated The Presence of Absence sponsored by the Contemporary Arts Council at Hairpin Arts Center, Chicago. Most recently, he was ranked #14 on New City’s Film 50: Chicago’s Screen Gems 2013was the recipient of a 2014 Illinois Arts Council Artist Fellowship in Literature (Poetry, Prose, Scriptworks) and made his premiere as a playwright and theatrical director at the 2015 Strawberry One-Act Play Festival, Hudson Guild Theatre, New York City, with Where’s the Rest of Me?, an adaptation of his essay. His play was nominated for Best Play and he was named Best Director. He is a graduate of Yale (BA, magna cum laude) and USC School of Cinematic Arts (MFA). Read more at

We will be announcing the four other plays later this week — Stay tuned!  

Announcing first play for third issue!

Over the next few ellen-margolisweeks, we will be announcing the six playwrights we will be publishing in the third issue of Proscenium Journal, coming early September.

The first play is “Pericles Wet,” an adaptation of Shakespeare’s Pericles by Portland playwright Ellen Margolis commissioned by Proscenium Journal. You may have seen “Pericles Wet” performed in July at Proscenium Journal’s Proscenium Live Festival of new work, where it had two very well-received performances.

Ellen Margolis is Chair of Theatre & Dance at Pacific University in Forest Grove, Oregon. Her plays include “How to Draw Mystical Creatures” (2004 NY Fringe Festival Award for Excellence in Playwriting, 2004 Jane Chambers Finalist, produced by ToyBox Theatre and Theatre Limina of St. Paul); “Trying Not to Stare” (Workshop, Portland Theatre Works through a grant from the Regional Arts & Culture Council); “Picking Up the Baby” (2006 NY International Fringe Festival); “American Soil” (Produced by Vital Theatre, New York); “A Little Chatter” (Commissioned and produced by Mile Square Theatre, produced by City Theatre, Finalist 2008 National 10-Minute Play Contest, forthcoming Playscripts, Inc.); “When It Stands Still” (produced by ToyBox Theatre); and others that have been produced throughout the United States. Some of her monologues have appeared in the Smith & Kraus Audition Arsenal series, and she is the editor of two recent volumes, Singular Voices: Monologues from the International Centre for Women Playwrights and The Politics of American Actor Training. Ellen is a member of Playwrights West and the Dramatists Guild.

Stay tuned — we will be announcing the five other plays later this week!

Proscenium Live Festival of New Work

Photos by David Kinder.

Partnering with Portland Shakespeare Project and supported by a grant from Stanford’s Haas Center for public service, Proscenium Journal held a 3-Night Festival of New Work called Proscenium Live. This festival included 5 new plays performed by 15 Portland-area actors on the beautiful Artists Repertory Theater Alder Stage. One of these plays, “Pericles Wet,” by Ellen Margolis, was a adaptation of Shakespeare’s “Pericles,” commissioned by Proscenium Journal, that was performed alongside the original text. Over 300 people attended this festival, and several people participated in post-show discussions with the playwrights which were held after every performance. And, like Proscenium Journal, the festival was completely free and open to the public.If you missed Proscenium Live, you can read our upcoming third issue, which will include the plays “The Widow of Tom’s Hill” by Aleks Merilo and “Pericles Wet” by Ellen Margolis, both of which were produced in the festival. You can also read “Black Coffee Green Tea” by Damon Chua, “Ski Lift” by Chris Holbrook, and “Tango Mike” by Aleks Merilo in past issues of Proscenium Journal.


Pericles Wet – A Commissioned Adaptation of Pericles
By Ellen Margolis
Directed by Michael Mendelson
Tuesday, July 14
Proscenium Journal commissioned Portland playwright Ellen Margolis to write an adaptation of Shakespeare’s Pericles. This adaptation, Pericles Wet, was performed alongside the classical Shakespearian text of Pericles.

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Featuring David Bodin, Chantal DeGroat, Heath Koerschgen, Kayla Lian, Ryan Tessler, Ashley Williams, and Cordelia Schimpf.

Black Coffee Green Tea
By Damon Chua
Directed by Steve Rathje
Sunday, July 19
Read this play in the first issue of Proscenium Journal.ProsceniumLive-0042-150719Featuring Brian Demar Jones, Jane Vogel, Samson Syharath, and Cordelia Schimpf.

Ski Lift
By Chris Holbrook
Directed by Steve Rathje
Sunday, July 19
Read this play in the first issue of Proscenium Journal.ProsceniumLive-0055-150719Featuring Nathan Dunkin and Matthew Faranda.

Tango Mike
By Aleks Merilo
Directed by Paul Angelo
Sunday, July 19
Read this play in the second issue of Proscenium Journal.ProsceniumLive-0107-150719-XLFeaturing Joe Costa and Chris Porter.

The Widow of Tom’s Hill
By Aleks Merilo
Monday, July 20
The Widow of Tom’s Hill will be presented Off-Broadway this fall 59E59 Theaters. Read it in the upcoming third issue of Proscenium Journal.IMG_4413

Thank you for coming! See you next year. ProsceniumLive-0213-150719-XL