Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Directors Announced for Winning Plays

James Betts, producer of the winning plays from this year's 517 Playwrights' 10-Minute Play Contest, announced the directors for the plays that will be produced under the auspices of the Kentucky Playwrights' Workshop, Inc. October 9-11, 2009 at the Thoroughbred Community Theatre in Midway, KY.

The plays and their directors, listed alphabetically by playwright are:

Scott Turner, director of Crish Barth's Hill Cattle.
Bob Singleton director of Len Cuthbert's Enigmatic Lucidity.
Ross Carter director of Lawrence DuKore's The Day Brando Died.
Lief Rigney director of Leon Kaye's More Pasta.
Lillie Ruschelle director of Thomas Pierce's Almost Connect....
Lief Rigney director of Kay Rhoads', Last Church of Lost Souls.
Jim Betts director of Steven Schutzman's The Weight.

More about Crish Barth's New York Success

San Francisco area emerging playwright Crish Barth has found success in New York. Alright, his play General Admissions didn't open in a Broadway theatre-- but at least he's in the same city. What began for Barth as an opportunity to be noticed, had its intended result. Barth's play was named a semifinalist in the The Strawberry One-Act Festival. And one of the actor's in his play, Andrew Guilarte, was awarded the festival's "best actor" award.

General Admissions is a 25 minute one act play in which a couple's (Dan and Sheila) night at the theatre turns into a relationship changing event. And it's all sparked when Dan (Andrew Guilarte) notices that they are seated in handicapped seating and Sheila refuses to move.

In 2009 The Strawberry One-Act Festival embarked on its 16th season this summer. The Strawberry Festival, the brainchild of The Riant Theatre Artistic Director, Van Dirk Fisher, is a play competition in which the audience and the theatre's judges cast their votes to select the best play of the season. Twice a year, hundreds of plays from across the country are submitted for the competition, of which 40 are chosen to compete. Plays move from the 1st round to the semi-finals and then the finals. The playwright of the winning play receives a grant and the opportunity to have a full-length play developed by the Riant.

Crish Barth is also the author of Hill Cattle that is being presented as part of "An Evening of One Act Plays" October 9-11, 2009 at the Thoroughbred Community Theatre in Midway, KY. Hill Cattle is one of seven winning 10-minute plays selected for production through the 517 Playwrights' 10-Minute Play Contest. His play and the other six winning plays are being produced by the non-profit Kentucky Playwrights' Workshop, Inc.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Tim: A Christmas Story

Bruce Williams author of Tim: A Christmas Story is seeking a group that would like to produce the second coming of the play. Produced first in 2008 by the Georgetown Community Theatre, Georgetown, KY where it was directed by Gil Thurman following a developmental workshop, Tim is a modern re-telling of the Charles Dickens classic A Christmas Carol. Updated for modern audiences with a diverse characters that include Indian (as in natives of India) and Mexican characters as well as Lebron James and settings that include a Mexican restaurant Tim: A Christmas Story is a play that will truly get audiences in the 'Christmas Spirit.'

If you or your theatre wants to find out more about this play that is well suited for community theatre or high school productions leave a comment or write to

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Next Meeting: Sunday September 13, 2009

The next meeting of 517 Playwrights will be Sunday September 13, 2009 at the Beaumont Branch of the Lexington Public Library. The meeting will run from 2:00 to 5:00 pm solely for the purpose of reading and discussing new works by our playwright members.

The play to be read and discussed will be Bill McCann, Jr.'s full-length play It's Who You Know: A Play about Identity and Opportunity. The play, set 30 years in the future, is about the selection of a nominee to serve on the Supreme Court of the United States. With two unit sets, ten scenes that all take place in the White House, seven characters (President, Mac and Bernard aides to the president, and four potential nominees for the court), this is a play of ideas and comedy which asks several question including: is the country ready for a trans-gendered female to serve on the highest court in the land?

Bill McCann, Jr., is a cofounder of 517 Playwrights and Treasurer of the Kentucky Playwrights' Workshop, Inc. His play There is No Wrigley Field was a 2007 finalist in the Lakeshore Players' 10-Minute Play Contest. As an actor Mr. McCann is currently in rehearsal for On Golden Pond that is being produced by Little Colonel Players in Pewee Valley, KY; Mr. McCann is playing the role of Charlie Martin.

If you would like to read an excerpt from It's Who You Know prior to September 13 please request it by writing ky.playwright@yahoo,com

Though we need playwright members, you need not be a playwright to attend our meetings. Meetings of 517 Playwrights are open to anyone having an interest in reading and supporting the development of new works for the stage.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Crish Barth Play Named Semi-finalist

Crish Barth's play, General Admissions, has advanced from the 1st round to the semi-finals of the Strawberry One Act Fest in New York. The next performance will be Tuesday, August 18 at 7pm at Theatre St. Clements. To obtain tickets go to Barth's facebook page or go to; and search for Strawberry One Act Festival.

Barth is one of seven winners of this year's 517 Playwrights' 10-Minute Play Contest; his play Hill Cattle will be produced at the Thoroughbred Community Theatre in Midway, KY October 9, 10, and 11, 2009 by the Kentucky Playwrights Workshop, Inc.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Audition Notice: A Night of 10-Minute Plays

Auditions for the seven 10-minute plays to be produced by the Kentucky Playwrights Workshop, Inc. will be held on Tuesday August 18 and Wednesday August 19, 2009 from 6:00 - 9:00 pm in CONFERENCE ROOM B, fourth floor, of the Main Branch, Lexington, Public Library. Directors of all seven plays will be present to select actors for their plays. A total of 9W and 8 M are needed. Actors may audition to appear in multiple plays/play multiple parts.

Kentucky Playwrights Workshop, Inc. is producing the seven winners of 517 Playwrights' 10-Minute Play Contest. Production of the plays will be the second weekend of October, 2009 (9, 10, 11) at the Thoroughbred Theatre in Midway, KY:

Crish Barth, Hill Cattle, 2 F (30s - 40s)
Will the man of her dreams show up to carry her away, as she contends?

Len Cuthbert Enigmatic Lucidity 1M 1F (20s to 50s)
Is the woman he loves trying to kill him? Or is he dreaming?

Lawrence DuKore, The Day Brando Died 2M (40s to 50s)
Two tennis players meeting for tennis learn about the common girl friend in their pasts

Leon Kaye More Pasta 1 M (20's) 1 M 1F (50s)
More is at stake than pasta when a family sits down together.

Thomas Pierce, Almost Connect 2 M 2W (20s to 40s)
A couple almost meet over coffee.

Kay Rhoads, Last Church of Lost Souls, 2 F (20s to 40s)
A female inmate and a guard look for the inmate's mother's grave.

Steven Schutzman, The Weight 1 F (16-18) 1 M (20's)
A girl runs away from home and shows up at the apt. of an older musician she admires.

The plays allow for great casting flexibility; nearly all plays can be cast with people of any race, ethnicity or age. So if you have an interest in acting this is a great opportunity to be showcased in new, interesting and challenging new work.

Come audition August 18 or 19 at the main branch, Lexington Public Library, 4th Floor, Conference room B, from 6 to 9 pm. Join in the fun of being in a play, or two, or maybe more! For additional information contact Jim Betts at (859) 321-2852.

MEETING Sunday August 16, 2009

The meeting scheduled for August 9th was cancelled at the last moment due to a death. So, this coming Sunday, August 16, 2009, 517 Playwrights and Kentucky Playwrights Workshop, Inc. will be meeting at the Thoroughbred Community Theatre 127 Main Street in Midway, beginning at 2:00 pm. The purpose of the meeting is to allow 10-minute play directors an opportunity to view the venue where the plays will be produced, take measurements, determine sight lines etc.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

NEXT MEETING: Sunday August 9, 2009

The next meeting of the 517 Playwrights will be held this Sunday, August 9, 2009, at the Thoroughbred Community Theatre 127 Main Street, Midway, KY. The purpose of the meeting is to allow directors of our 10-Minute Plays to view the venue where the plays will be produced. Discussion will also focus on audition times and locations and other matters related to getting each play cast and rehearsed. As always the meeting will begin at 2:00; it is expected that the meeting will conclude by 4:00 pm.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Help the arts, support the artist: Leon Kaye

Leon Kaye, author of More Pasta, is an insurance agent who has written four full length comedies and many one acts and short works. He is published by: Brooklyn, Baker's, Heuer, and Playscripts. He lives in NY with his wife and children and owns the Kalayjian, Oaks & Associates insurance agency.

If you have auto or other insurance needs contact Kalayian, Oaks & Associates at 10 New King St., White Plains NY 10604. Leon Kaye may also be contacted by phone at 914-428-3200 or by e-mail at Help the arts, support the artist!

Sunday, August 2, 2009

We CAN accept donations but....

517 Playwrights is an unincorporated entity: basically, though we hold public meetings, we are a private group. We charge no dues and have no expectations of our members except that they come to meetings and share in them either as a playwright or as a supportive individual who is trying to help playwright members improve their scripts. That's all we do. The organization can accept no donations; it has no bank account, officers or official "existence."

On the other hand, just this past week, a group of us have incorporated the KENTUCKY PLAYWRIGHTS' WORKSHOP (KPW), Inc. as a nonprofit and registered that name with the Kentucky Secretary of State's Office in Frankfort. We are NOT registered with the US Dept. of the Treasury, Internal Revenue Service as 501(c)3 tax exempt organization; I do not know if we will ever do that, though we may.

The KPW is the producing group that is putting on the evening of 10-Minute Plays that will be produced at the Thoroughbred Community Theatre in Midway in October of this year. If you wish to make a donation to help us underwrite production costs for that event, that would be appreciated. At this point though the future of the KPW is simply unknown.

We have not made plans beyond the October production. After that production, presumably sometime in late October we will work on doing the things necessary to get the organization organized: writing a mission statement, electing officers, setting dues, establishing an annual meeting date and all such similar matters. In the meantime, we will be raising funds solely for the purpose of underwriting production costs that are ANICIPATED to be in the neighborhood of $1,000.00

It is anticipated that there will be two primary sources of funding for the production: selling advertising in the program; donations. We will be charging admission for the Friday, Saturday and Sunday shows. What we don't know is whether people will drive to Midway for an evening of 10-Minute shows since the community is roughly 10 miles or more from the nearest other towns: Lexington, Georgetown, Frankfort and Versailles.

If you would like information about how you can support the Kentucky Playwright's Workshop and the production of the 517 Playwrights' 10-Minute Play Contest please either leave a comment or write to us at

Check with your accountant or other knowledgeable person about whether not, to what degree (if ANY) your donation to KPW is tax deductible.

If you would like to take out an ad in the program for the 10-Minute plays to be produced in October please leave a comment or write us at

Thank you for your interest in supporting our work and the playwrights whose works we are producing.