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The Seven: Worlds Collide

Ninth Annual New Works Festival

One of the nation's premiere new works festivals!

June 5-15, 2014

Gala Opening: Thurs., June 6, 7pm

Who is going to Broadway?

 

 

 

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click to learn about auditions at FUSION Theatre
click to learn more about The New Works Fest

 


 

 


Seven fully-produced world premieres.

Seven different directors.

A professional ensemble cast.


Theme for 2014 is "Worlds Collide"!
Click for play submission info


2013 Winners Announced!!

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FUSION Theatre Company is excited to announce
The Seven for this year's competition!

Our audiences have votee for their favorite,
the esteemed Bob and Gail Bosser Audience Choice Award:

"Are You David Mamet?" by John Kane from W. Hollywood, CA

2013 Jury Prize Winner
End of the Rainy Season
Mark Rigney--Evansville, IN

The barn door is closed and the final tally turned out to be an astounding 748 submissions from 43 states, D.C., and nine countries!

2013 Winners

The Writer
Chip Bolcik--Thousand Oaks, CA

Take the Words from Out of My Mouth
Christopher Lockheardt--Andover, MA

Reaching Out to the Dark
Tony Pasqualini--Los Angeles, CA

Spark
Barbara Blumenthal-Ehrlich--Needham, MA

Paradise Lost
Jeffrey Neuman--Denver, CO

2013 Bob and Gail Bosser
Audience Choice Prize Winner

Are You David Mamet?
John Kane--West Hollywood, CA

2013 Finalists

George D. Morgan--Santa Paula, CA
J. Thalia Cunningham--Delmar, NY
Deanna Alisa Ableser--Los Angeles, CA
Christine Foster--Campbellville, ON, Canada
Erin Grogan--Eden, NY
Lawrence Kessenich--Watertown, MA
Connie Schindewolf--Bradenton, FL
James Armstrong--New York, NY
Joshua Drimmer--Brooklyn, NY
Michael Tooher--Portland, ME
Ariadne Blayde--New Orleans, LA
Amy Crider--Chicago, IL


Hurry!


The Seven now runs for two weekends only and sells out!
Don't delay!

All entries to FUSION's "The Seven" short works contest are read "blind" (all identifying information withheld from the judges), ensuring a level playing field for all. The script quality was excellent this year necessitating tough choices with these, our additional...

 


Interviews With 2013's Winners

1) How did you hear about The Seven?
2) What was the impetus/basis/inspiration for writing the piece?
3) Is this play representational of your writing style? Is it similar to or different from your other plays?
4) What is the role of the short work in your playwriting career?
5) What is your favorite play? Who is your favorite playwright?
6) What is your next playwriting venture?
7) Is there anything you would like to add?


M Rigney

C Bolcik

C Lockheardt

T Pasqualini

B Blumenthal-Erlich

J Neuman

J Kane

click on a playwright's photo to read his/her response!

FUSION a Perenial Contributor to Samuel French Festival!


Since the inception of The Seven: New Works, FUSION Theatre Company has been honored to be represented regularly at the nation's premiere short works celebration, Samuel French's Off Off Broadway Festival. Whether it works we've premiered or entire productions airlifted to NYC, FUSION is a regular, key contributor. This years' Festival details are available at the OOB web site. If your travel plans take you to Manhattan this July, we hope to see you there


 


click to play a YouTube slideshow of "The Seven:Tangled Webs" New Works '12

Barry Gaines, review, December 11, 2011 of 2011 The Seven winner Matt Hanf's full-length play You Can't Get a Decent Margarita At The North Pole produced by FUSION Theatre and running Dec. 8-24, 2011.

Lynn Miller, review, June 19, 2011 TalkinBroadway.com:

The Seven, the 6th annual New Works Festival from FUSION Theatre Company, featured seven short plays from around the country. This year's theme, "Tangled Webs," provided the audience with complex, often ironic, psychological dramas. Short one-acts, ten to fifteen minutes long, are hard to write and sometimes hard to watch, as a bevy of characters, plots, styles and themes burst one after another—the whole is not always greater than the sum of the parts. I'm happy to say that this year's festival was thoroughly enjoyable, often brilliant, theatre. Fusion@The Cell did a fine job of creating an organic production that delved into our collective American psyche, past and present.

Kudos to the production staff—including Dennis Gromelski as Coordinator, Maria Lee Schmidt as Stage Manager, and Richard K. Hogle, Set & Lighting Design—for establishing complete environments with great efficiency and maximum metaphoric value for the diverse subject matter. The seven directors established foregrounding rhythms and a masterful sense of rising and falling action within each brief time frame. The cast, several of whom played multiple roles, showed remarkable fluidity as well. The following gives a snapshot of each play.

Jamie Pachino's Status Update played with our obsessions about social media, particularly Facebook. A couple's relationship pivots 180 degrees over the issue of whether or not to "publish" their changed status online after they've slept together. The play, directed by Josh Klein, puts the dilemma of what is public vs. what private literally center stage. In a summer where the sexual peccadilloes of politicians occupy the headlines, the play ironically sends up our cravings to be special in the internet age.

Water/A Shot in the Dark, written by Christopher Kent, is a story of war buddies in an episode of friendly fire. The play hinges on the revelation that one soldier has accidentally (or not) shot the other. Director Laurie Thomas did a fine job of keeping the action taut, but the predictable outcome of the play is a weak point in the script.

Playing with Fire, by the New Mexican playwright Lyn Kidder, has the import of history behind it. Set in Los Alamos at the end of WWII, the play explores the impact of the development of the atomic bomb on one couple. The man (played with quiet tension by Ryan Jason Cook) is one of the physicists working on the bomb with Oppenheimer. His pregnant wife, well played by Kate Costello, symbolizes the simple patriotism and belief in the nation's integrity that characterized the times. Sound design (by Brent Stevens) and direction (Robb Sisneros) added much to this intriguing play.

The fourth play, And What a Damn Fine Morning It Is, is a hilarious send-up of consumerism in a neighborhood where aspiration is gospel. There were excellent comic turns by Paul Blott and Bruce Holmes as they escalate their oneupmanship, and director Aaron Worley's timing matched theirs. Playwright Trace Crawford has his mischievous hand on our mercantile pulse here.

The second act, opening with Two Minutes of Heroism, juxtaposes the desires and motives of a small community of people who are all affected by a convenience store shooting. Nicely choreographed by director Jacqueline Reid, the play's idea is more profound than the limited interactions allow. Playwright Matt Hanf is hampered here by the requirement of brevity. It would be satisfying if this concept could be developed at greater length where the characterizations could reach beyond stereotype.

Brian Walker's Neighborly Do's & Don'ts is utterly original and madly comic as a woman kidnaps a man who has stolen her girl scout cookies for three years running. The thief, played by Neil Faulconbridge with masterful cunning and wonderful self-deprecation, reveals that his addiction to the cookies developed during a childhood of helping his sister sell the most cookies in their town. Jen Grigg as the over-the-top neighbor seeking vengeance and the economic direction of Bruce Holmes made this short play a crowd pleaser.

Ending the sequence of plays was a dark story of family dysfunction, Formaldehyde, the jury [and Bob and Gail Bosser Audience Favorite] prize winner in the festival. The longest play featured and the most complexly drawn, this story of an anger-addicted husband, a desperate but passive wife, and a gutsy daughter constantly took new and unexpected turns. The cast—Bruce Holmes, Wendy Scott, and Lauren Myers—were inspired in this unpredictable drama well-directed by Jen Grigg.

The Seven played June 9-12, 2011 at The Cell Theater at 700 1st St. NW in Albuquerque, NM. For more information on this excellent company with a history of polished, professional productions, go to www.fusionabq.org.

 

Marissa Greenberg, review, June 21, 2008 (on-line), Albuquerque Journal:

In Jen Silverman’s The Education of Macoloco, Anessa teaches her son bizarre trivia and the so-called “facts of life.” But Anessa withholds the truth of Macoloco’s paternity and, until the play’s conclusion, of her inner life. Such silences befit the winner of the Jury Prize of The Seven: Something Left Unsaid, FUSION Theatre Company’s New Works Festival.

Now in its third year, the festival received 417 short works from 41 states and 6 countries. The jury reads submissions “blind” and chooses 7 for performance. This year’s winners suggest a bright future for the international stage. In particular, expect to hear again from Silverman. Silverman, who graduated from Brown University in 2006 and begins the MFA program at Iowa Playwrights Workshop this fall, had 2 plays in the festival.

Like Macoloco, Silverman’s Notes on Drowning (For the Man Who Cannot Make the Journey) withholds essential information until the end. The final revelation belittles mundane suffering yet proves oddly life affirming. Strong direction (Jen Grigg and Elizabeth Huffman) and solid performances energize Silverman’s learned, witty and affective scripts. Laurie Thomas gives an especially impressive performance as Anessa, a physically and emotionally demanding role.

Other plays invite the audience to deduce what is left unsaid. The title of Craig Abernethy’s That Day refers to September 11, 2001. Kirsten and Toby (compellingly performed by Ravenna Fahey and Michael Finnegan) never specify the date, but as they describe an exhibition of photos taken in the tragedy’s aftermath, the audience can fill in the blank. Despite its intentional evasions, That Day is rawly honest. Like the exhibited photos, it demonstrates that art can render reality “too real.”

Perhaps the most amusing play, Teddy Knows Too Much by Matt Hanf (Jacqueline Reid directs), also includes a profoundly disturbing silence. A mustached and uproarious John Hardman stars as 3-year-old Billy, who surreptitiously torments his family in order to secure his parents’ attention. Mom and Dad (Lou Clark and Bruce Holmes are hilarious) look for simple solutions to Billy’s behavior. First they give him a stuffed teddy bear who becomes privy to all Billy’s secrets and therefore must be silenced. Teddy’s flushing is followed by medication. In a final tableau, Hanf’s implicit commentary on parenting in America ceases to evoke laughter.

What ought not go unsaid is that The Seven is worth seeing.


With the inception in 2006 of our The Seven: New Works Fest, FUSION Theatre Company has been pleased to host a wonderful new way to fulfill our mission of presenting fresh, new works of extraordinary merit.

To view our previous "Seven" productions, click here.

With an annual theme selected by our patrons via on-line voting, FUSION Theatre Company has seen exponential interest from talented playwrights the world over. Our inaugural festival in 2006, with the theme Games People Play, drew over 70 submissions, from which the top seven were selected by our artistic staff. They are always professionally produced, acted and directed and enthusiastically received by full houses.


 


 

 

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