2019 RESIDENT DIRECTORS
Molly Beach Murphy
Molly Beach Murphy is a playwright and director from Texas. Her work has been developed at New York Stage & Film + Vassar's Powerhouse Theater, New York Theatre Workshop, Williamstown Theater Festival, Yale Institute for Musical Theater, Ars Nova, The Civilians' R&D Group, UArts' Polyphone, Fresh Ground Pepper. She is a Page 73 Fellowship semi-finalist and member of P73’s I-73 writer’s group. New Georges Affiliated Artist. She has worked as an associate director for Tina Landau and Jo Bonney among others. Published works in The Hairpin and Santa Ana River Review. Most recently, Molly spent two months in Galveston, TX working as a Field Organizer for the Beto O’Rourke campaign. mollybeachmurphy.com
Ike: A father and daughter wake up in their home and nothing seems amiss, until they walk outside to find that their house is the only one left standing. IKE takes place just after a storm that devastated the Texas Gulf Coast in 2008, and follows a myriad of storm survivors as they try to make sense of a town reduced to rubble, a collapsing US economy and the heartbreakingly surreal, funny, devastating nature of what happens when your entire life gets washed away in an instant.
Lily Whitsitt is founder of Door 10, a performance laboratory currently creating sound-based theatrical works. Door 10's most recent production, This is the Color Described by the Time, premiered at The Flea (Feb 2018) and was produced by New Georges. Door 10's work has been supported by The Drama League, Baryshnickov Arts Center, LMCC, and WP. Lily is a two-time recipient of the Princess Grace Award and a New Georges Affiliated Artist. She also work witht the TED Fellows program where she develops and supports this dynamic network of global visionaries. www.door10.org
Untitled Femme Maison is the second in a series of sound-based theater works by Lily Whitsitt and Door 10. The first, This Is The Color Described By The Time, examined the controversial politics of writer Gertrude Stein in World War II France. Untitled Femme Maison is inspired by sculptor Louise Bourgeois, known for her work around themes of sexuality, motherhood, and her subconscious. The audience will wear individual headphones for the performance in an attempt to drop them inside Bourgeois' imagined unconscious.
Principal Collaborators: Ben Williams (sound design), Sophie Bortolussi (choreography, performance), Morgan Jenness (dramaturgy)
Nell Bang-Jensen is a theater director/creator who has created five full-scale, original works, in addition to directing and producing for many of Philadelphia’s major theater institutions including Pig Iron, the Wilma and the Painted Bride. Her interests in radical models for community engagement, social practice, devising, and new play development guide much of her artistic work. She recently served as the Associate Artistic Director of Pig Iron through a Leadership U Grant, funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and administered by the Theatre Communications Group; a fellowship given to eight rising artistic leaders nationally. Recent directing credits include The Caregivers (Pig Iron), The Real Whisper (César Alvarez’s Polyphone Festival), and Practice Wedding (Painted Bride).
Nosejob is an original theater work that examines the relationship between desire, seduction, consent and masculinity. It weaves together narratives from a 9th century abbey, a contemporary college campus, and an imagined future where the patriarchy has actually crumbled. This piece was inspired by the story of Ebba, a nun who lived in Scotland circa 870 A.D. When Viking invaders pillaged her abbey she famously cut off her nose; an act of self-mutilation that she hoped would help her avoid being raped and ensure her ascent to heaven. It's been suggested that this is the origin of the saying “cutting off your nose to spite your face”. Nosejob explores this story and how women who compensate for violent male behavior have continued to be glorified in the twelve centuries since.
Shayok Misha Chowdhury
Shayok Misha Chowdhury is a queer Bengali director, writer and performance-maker. He is currently a Resident Artist at Ars Nova, a member of the SohoRep Writer/Director Lab, a Resident Director at The Flea, and a recent New York Theatre Workshop Directing Fellow. His work has also been developed and seen at Signature Theatre, SPACE on Ryder Farm, HERE Arts Center, NYMF, the New Orleans Film Festival, and the Hemispheric Institute of Performance and Politics. Upcoming projects include rasgos asiaticos (SohoRep & CalArts Center for New Performance) and MukhAgni (Ars Nova). He is on faculty at Williams College. MFA: Columbia. shayokmishachowdhury.com
Beast Thing: A ghost town emaciated by its own secrets. A Saint charged with eating the town’s sins. The animals are dying mysteriously, the dogs are barking incessantly, and underneath it all there’s a lurking frustration that we’ve heard this story before. Aleshea Harris’ Beast Thing is a critique of our racialized national mythology: the nostalgia-inducing tropes, at once violent and pastoral, that we call Americana. We are playing with estrangement to pull apart the seams in those same-old small town tales.
Ashley Brooke Monroe
Ashley Brooke Monroe is a Brooklyn-based theatre director whose primary interest is in developing new plays and musicals. Recent credits: Julius Caesar (CSC), Tommy’s Girls (Fordham/Primary Stages), Fun Home (Cape Rep), and Orlando (Fordham). She assistant directed Indecent (Broadway) and assisted Sam Gold on the Tony-winning musical Fun Home, The Glass Menagerie (Broadway), The Mystery of Love and Sex (Lincoln Center). She often creates site-specific work, including What We’ll Do by Sheila Callaghan, Red Sky at Night by Blake Bishton, Age of Extinction by Willie Johnson. She's developed work with NYTW, The Public, Musical Theater Factory, The Flea, Soho Rep, IRT, New York Theatre Barn. Originally from Austin, Ashley holds a BFA in Dramaturgy: University of Oklahoma.
Biting Hands: New couple Lucy and Alfonso have a lot in common: they both love jazz, hate incompetent ER nurses, and are quadriplegics who use an identical computerized voice. Their mothers only see differences. Alfonso’s mom writes off anyone who isn’t a Spanish-speaking PhD candidate. Lucy’s mom won’t let her date, period. With Lucy’s 18th birthday and legal independence looming, she hopes to defy her mother through an illegal and irreversible plan. Laura Winters’ new play Biting Hands is equal parts hilarious coming of age story and a brutal dissection of disability, class, and race in present-day America.
Resident Director: Hamilton, An American in Paris (Broadway). Director: Every Path (La Jolla Playhouse, Moxie Theatre), Still Life (Keller Gallery), The Guys (Davenport Theatre), The Big Announcement (Drama League Rough Draft), Let’s Misbehave: A Tribute to Cole Porter (Mr. Finn’s Cabaret), Cendrillon and Gianni Schicchi (Point Loma Opera Theatre), Twelfth Night, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, The Forced Marriage, Only in New York (Point Loma Playhouse). New musicals in development: All Dressed Up and Nowhere to Go, The Black and White Ball, and The Sandman. Drama League Director’s Project Fellow. SDC Foundation Denham Fellow. Founding member of Nettleworks. hannahmryan.com.
Riot Song: A homeless trans woman living with HIV. A 74-year-old bartender at the Stonewall Inn. A gay Lutheran priest. A party boy. A hardened activist. These are the characters brought together by Riot Song, a documentary play that recounts the tragedies and triumphs of New York’s LGBT community through the voices of people who witnessed them first-hand. Using the 2013 homophobic murder of Mark Carson as a point of departure, Riot Song is scripted from hours of interviews with real-life characters in the West Village. Interweaving oral history and archival documents with music, song and dance, Riot Song presents a world that is sometimes heartbreaking but always fiercely fabulous and incredibly brave.
Madeline Sayet is a director of new plays, classics and opera who believes the stories we pass down inform our collective possible futures. For her work as a director she was named to Forbes’ 2018 30 Under 30 List in Hollywood & Entertainment, and has been honored as a TED Fellow, a MIT Media Lab Director’s Fellow, a National Directing Fellow, and a recipient of The White House Champion of Change Award. Upcoming directing: Whale Song by Cathy Rexford (Perseverance Theatre), Henry IV (CT Repertory Theatre), Midsummer Nights Dream (South Dakota Shakespeare). www.madelinesayet.com
Hart Island Requiem: Larson Award recipients Ty Defoe (Book & Lyrics) and Tidtaya Sinutoke (Composer) invoke the silenced voices of the land on which we stand. Hart Island is a real place that you can take the MTA Ferry to, which most of us will never hear about. It is a potter's field located in the Bronx, where over one million people have been buried, from 1869 to the present day. This immersive, investigative theatre piece reveals the stories of the people who were tossed out and buried there, because America did not want them. Their ghosts gather at an abandoned theme park where they remember their lives and deaths. Amidst them, one young spirit wonders what it would be like to be one of the living.