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American New Writing Festival

At Theatre503

ObamAmerica, was a festival of fifteen- minute plays about life under the Obama administration, looking at all aspects from political to personal. Barack Obama is a powerful and charismatic figure, one whose election promised great change and provided hope for a difference to American society and the world at large after eight years under George W Bush.


We asked, did Obama fulfil those dreams of the American people or did he offer more of the same? We received over 250 submissions from playwrights and chose just fourteen to be performed in ObamAmerica:

Week One

1. Knock Knock by Charles Evered, directed by Lisa Cagnacci         

2. Bong Hits 4 Jesus by Eric Henry Sanders, directed by Jennifer Bakst      

3. Off the Cliff by Alexis Roblan, directed by Suzette Coon            

4. Crowd by Judah Skoff, directed by Lydia Parker

5. Water Under the Board by Christopher A Adams, directed by Jonathan O'Boyle

6. Reflection Day by Chuck Cummings, directed by Omar F Okai

7. Bradley-Chelsea-Nameless by Al Sjoerdsma, directed by Benet Catty

Week Two

1. African Americana by Aurin Squire, directed by James O'Donnell

2. Let Me Be Clear by Kevin Armento, directed by Abbie Lucas

3. They Float Up by Jacquelyn Reingold, directed by Lydia Parker

4. To Defend Freedom by Annalisa Dias, directed by Daniel Burgess 

5. Whistleblower by Nasi Voutsas, directed by Jasmine Woodcock-Stewart           

6.  Alban's Garden by Rich Espey, directed by Robyn Winfield-Smith

7. $<0RP!0 by Kevin Kautzman, directed by Matt Steinberg

An Algerian prisoner is finally freed from Guantanamo Bay but what awaits him? An African-American university graduate campaigns for Obama in rough East Cleveland, Ohio but keeps getting stopped by armed and racist state troopers. A drone pilot in Arizona hides out in a nail bar. Edward Snowden chats to an Obama souvenir salesman in Washington DC. Bradley Manning dances in his jail cell. An ineffectual gun law is hotly debated on a TV news show. ObamAmerica will give snapshots of the challenges that Barack Obama faces and the sometimes controversial choices he has made during his term of office.

Playwrights included renowned TV and film writers Charles Evered (Adopt a Sailor starring Peter Coyote, USA’s Monk), Aurin Squire (The Good Fight, This is Us) and Jacquelyn Reingold ( The Good Fight, Grace and Frankie, Smash, Law and Order, In Treatment), many award winning playwrights from around the United States whose work has been seen at Primary Stages, Naked Angels, Manhattan Repertory Theater (NYC), Milwaukee Rep, Kennedy Center and New Jersey Rep as well as several American writers who have studied at the Royal Court Young Writers Programme and had work produced in London.

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