Actors Theatre of Louisville Announces Lineup for 36th Annual Humana Festival of New American Plays

by on November 13, 2011

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Featuring World Premieres by Courtney Baron, Michael Golamco, Idris Goodwin, Lucas Hnath, Greg Kotis, Carson Kreitzer, Lisa Kron, Mona Mansour, Steve Moulds, Tanya Saracho and Matt Schatz

Actors Theatre of Louisville Announces Lineup for 36th Annual Humana Festival of New American Plays


Courtney Baron, Michael Golamco, Idris Goodwin, Lucas Hnath, Greg Kotis, Carson Kreitzer, Lisa Kron, Mona Mansour, Steve Moulds, Tanya Saracho and Matt Schatz



Louisville, KY – Actors Theatre of Louisville is thrilled to announce the lineup of the 36th Annual Humana Festival of New American Plays.  This year’s Festival will feature 10 world premieres that celebrate 14 vital voices in American theatre today.  Described by Gordon Cox at Variety as “one of the most prominent showcases of fully staged new plays in the U.S.the Festival is a driving force of new play development in America and attracts a national and international audience of nearly 40,000 theatre professionals and enthusiasts each year.  This season, the Humana Festival runs February 26 through April 1, 2012.

Managing Director Jennifer Bielstein states, “I am incredibly proud of our artistic team and the selections in the 2012 Humana Festival.  The plays that we announce today will join a prestigious catalogue of work we have launched into the American theatre repertoire.  The Humana Festival remains a standout event in the American theatre, drawing local, national and international attention and attracting arts professionals and theatre enthusiasts from across the country. Last year’s Humana Festival boasted more than 100 performances and attracted visitors from 44 states and 9 countries.  We are extremely grateful to the Humana Foundation, whose commitment to support the Festival’s mission is unmatched.”

This year’s Festival showcases seven full-length plays, including a play by five writers commissioned by Actors Theatre and featuring the Acting Apprentice Company, and an evening of three ten-minute plays (yet to be announced). The productions will run in rotating repertory in Actors Theatre’s 633-seat Pamela Brown Auditorium, 318-seat Bingham Theatre and 159-seat Victor Jory Theatre.

We are tremendously excited to support an array of remarkable voices in this festival lineup that brings together a diverse collection of aesthetics, cultural perspectives and original stories,” remarked Amy Wegener, Actors Theatre’s Literary Director. “This constellation of amazing playwrights includes a mix of men and women, experiences that range from the suburban Midwest to the Middle East, veterans of Broadway and writers who’ll see their work produced on this scale for the first time.  The Humana Festival’s commitment to production as a vital stage of new play development, with the writer’s imagination as our compass, allows the creative teams to fully engage with the possibilities of the plays’ rich theatrical worlds—and for audiences to share in that discovery.”

Idris Goodwin, who will make his Humana Festival debut, said, “How We Got On launches my most recent theatrical endeavor: to pay homage to Hip Hop in the Midwest, the culture that shaped me as a writer. What greater affirmation than to participate in this country’s most essential new play festival.”

I’m tremendously grateful and thrilled that my odd play about a vampire with second thoughts will premiere at the Humana Festival,” said playwright Greg Kotis on having his play selected. “I’ve had the honor to participate in the Festival twice before, first as a co-author of BRINK! (an anthology show written for and performed by Actor Theatre’s Acting Apprentice Company), and then as a performer in and an author of one of the ten-minute plays.  The Humana Festival continues to be one of the essential events of our national theatre season, and I’m very happy to be a part of it once again.

Mona Mansour said, “I am thrilled to be invited to be in this year’s festival, where so many plays I admire were launched. And I am equally thrilled to be there with Mark Wing-Davey, who directed the very first reading of The Hour of Feeling at the Public Theater.”

This year’s festival program will feature (in chronological order):

  • Seven full-length world premieres, including
    • The Veri**on Play by Lisa Kron
    • How We Got On by Idris Goodwin
    • The Hour of Feeling by Mona Mansour
    • Eat Your Heart Out by Courtney Baron
    • Death Tax by Lucas Hnath
    • Michael von Siebenburg Melts Through the Floorboards by Greg Kotis
    • Oh, Gastronomy! by Michael Golamco, Carson Kreitzer, Steve Moulds, Tanya Saracho and Matt Schatz, performed by the Actors Theatre Acting Apprentice Company.


  • An evening of three Ten-Minute Plays (to be announced)


The 2012 Humana Festival schedule also features special industry weekend packages, networking opportunities, discussions and soiree events, making Louisville the place to be in American theatre this spring.  For more information on individual plays, see below.

Actors Theatre celebrates the 36th Annual Humana Festival with its underwriter The Humana Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Humana, Inc.   Additional support is provided by the National Endowment for the Arts and The Harold and Mimi Steinberg Charitable Trust.

The Humana Festival represents the largest and longest-running active partnership between a corporation and a theatre in the United States.


Designer Wayne Brezinka has been commissioned by Actors Theatre of Louisville to create the illustration for the 36th Annual Humana Festival of New American Plays.  As an illustrator and contributing artist, Brezinka has been commissioned by the New York Times, Neiman Marcus, the Johnny Cash family, the Washington Post and the Chicago Tribune. He has also illustrated for many ads, posters, music packaging and consumer packaging, and is always looking for new venues for his work. His illustrations have appeared in Communication Arts, Print Magazine and most recently, The Society of Illustrators: Illustrators 52 in New York. Through a unique combination of vintage and found ephemera, collage and mixed mediums, Brezinka creates and sculpts these items into unique images and works art. Wayne lives with his wife and three children in Nashville, Tennessee.


Descriptions of the 36th Annual Humana Festival of New American Plays world premiere lineup and biographies of each of the playwrights and directors now follow in chronological order:


The Veri**on Play

by Lisa Kron

directed by Nicholas Martin


February 26-April 1

Bingham Theatre


When Jenni called customer service, all she wanted was to fix a minor problem with her cell phone bill.  Instead she was sucked into a vortex of unimaginable horror.   Now she wants revenge—or to get her cell phone service turned back on.  Part thriller, part screwball comedy, part inspired by events that have undoubtedly happened to YOU.


Lisa Kron’s plays include In the Wake (included in Best Plays of 2010-2011, Lortel and GLAAD best play nominations), Well (included in Best Plays of 2003-2004, Tony® Award-nominated) and 2.5 Minute Ride (Obie, L.A. Drama-Logue, GLAAD Media Award). Honors include Guggenheim, Lortel, Lark, Creative Capital, Sundance and National Endowment for the Arts/Theatre Communications Group fellowships, and Helen Merrill and Alpert Awards.  Kron is a founding member of the Obie and Bessie Award-winning theatre company The Five Lesbian Brothers.  Upcoming: a musical adaptation of Alison Bechdel’s graphic novel Fun Home with composer Jeanine Tesori.  Kron’s short plays Charity and Monticore were part of Neon Mirage at the 2006 Humana Festival and she brought her solo play 101 Humiliating Stories to Actors Theatre in 1995.

Nicholas Martin has directed The Circle, A Cheever Evening and The Substance of Fire for Westport Country Playhouse.  On Broadway, he staged Present Laughter, Butley, Match, Hedda Gabler, The Rehearsal and You Never Can Tell.  Off-Broadway, he directed Christopher Durang’s Why Torture Is Wrong, and the People Who Love Them at The Public Theater; Observe the Sons of Ulster… (Drama Desk Award nomination), The Time of the Cuckoo, Chaucer in Rome, Saturn Returns and Paul Rudnick’s The New Century at Lincoln Center Theater; Fully Committed at Vineyard Theatre and Cherry Lane Theatre; Full Gallop at Manhattan Theatre Club and West Side Arts; Betty’s Summer Vacation (Obie Award, Drama Desk Award nominations) and Sophistry at Playwrights Horizons; and Bosoms and Neglect at Signature Theatre.

News points

  • Kron’s work previously appeared at the 2006 Humana Festival as part of the multi-writer project Neon Mirage, performed by the Acting Apprentice Company.
  • Kron also appeared at Actors as part of the Flying Solo and Friends Festival in 1995, with her show 101 Humiliating Stories.
  • Kron’s play Well ran on Broadway after premiering at the Public Theater in New York, and received two Tony® Award nominations.
  • Kron’s play 2.5 Minute Ride won numerous awards, including an Obie Award, and has been produced at theatres all over the country including at La Jolla Playhouse and the Public Theater.


How We Got On

by Idris Goodwin

directed by Wendy C. Goldberg

March 2 – April 1

Bingham Theatre

Hank, Julian and Luann are the flip side to the A story of hip hop’s rise in the late 1980s—kids who forge a cultural identity in the white suburbs by dueling with poetry in parking lots and dubbing beats on a boom box. In this coming-of-age tale remixed, A DJ loops us through the lives of three Midwestern teen rappers who discover the power of harmony over discord.


Idris Goodwin is a playwright, poet, essayist and hip hop performer. Goodwin’s stage work has earned awards from The National Endowment for the Arts and The Ford Foundation. His play How We Got On was developed at the 2011 National Playwrights Conference at The Eugene O’Neill Theater Center. His play Braising was selected for the National New Play Network’s 2005 National Showcase of New Plays. Praised by the New York Times for his “grown man rap,” Goodwin appeared on HBO’s Def Poetry, The Discovery Channel, and most recently, Sesame Street. These Are The Breaks, his debut collection of essays, was nominated for a Pushcart Prize. This spring, Goodwin will teach playwriting at Northwestern University.

Wendy C. Goldberg: At Actors: Doubt, The Chosen. Regional Theatre: Dollhouse (Guthrie Theater), The Crowd You’re in With (Goodman Theatre), Two Things You Don’t Talk About At Dinner, Third, Sweetest Swing in Baseball, Living Out, The Clean House (Denver Center Theatre Company), Durango, Doubt (Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park), False Creeds (Alliance Theatre), Master Class (Paper Mill Playhouse), The Goat, Proof, Book Of Days, On The Jump, K2 (Arena Stage) Broadway: Creative Consultant for Rock Of Ages. Off Broadway: Reading Under the Influence (Daryl Roth 2), Deathbed (Mc Ginn-Cazale) Awards: 2010 Tony® Award for Outstanding Regional Theater, Eugene O’Neill Theater Center. Ms. Goldberg is in her eighth season as Artistic Director of National Playwrights Conference, Eugene O’Neill Theater Center.  Goldberg was the Artistic Associate at Arena Stage from 2000-2005 and is a Stage Directors and Choreographers Society Executive Board Member. Goldberg received her M.F.A from UCLA and is a graduate of the University of Michigan.

Development of How We Got On was supported by New Leaf Theatre’s Treehouse Reading Series, 2011

and by the Eugene O’Neill Theater Center during a residency at the National Playwrights Conference of 2011, Wendy C. Goldberg, Artistic Director; Preston Whiteway, Executive Director.


News points

  • Goodwin is making his Humana Festival debut with How We Got On.
  • Goodwin was praised by The Root Magazine as one of the top 30 performance poets in the world.
  • Goodwin’s original poem Rhyme Time will be featured on the 2011/12 season of Sesame Street.
  • Upcoming projects include a new one-act play, The Story Farm, and an album, Break Beat Poems.


The Hour of Feeling

by Mona Mansour

directed by Mark Wing-Davey

March 6- April 1

Pamela Brown Auditorium

It’s 1967 and the map of the Middle East is about to change drastically. Fueled by a love of English Romantic poetry, Adham journeys from Palestine to London with his new wife, Abir, to deliver a career-defining lecture. As the young couple’s marriage is tested, Adham struggles to reconcile his ambitions with the pull of family and home. But what if seizing the moment means letting go of everything he knows?

Mona Mansour’s plays include Urge For Going, The Hour of Feeling, Girl Scouts of America (co-written with Andrea Berloff) and Broadcast Yourself (part of Headlong’s Decade).  Mansour’s work has been presented at the Public Theater, New York Stage and Film, New York Theatre Workshop, Dance Theater Workshop, The Public’s New Work Now and Emerging Writers Group’s Spotlight Series, Golden Thread, Ojai Playwrights Conference, NYC Fringe Festival and Headlong Theatre (U.K.). Broadcast Yourself was published by Nick Hern Books. Television credits include Dead Like Me and Queens Supreme. Newest works include a piece on journalist Anna Politkovskaya for Continuum Theater and Across the Water for New York University’s graduate program. Mansour received an honorable mention for the 2010 Middle East America Playwright Award. She is a 2011-2012 Playwriting Fellow at the Lark.

Mark Wing-Davey: Regional: Carson Kreitzer’s Behind the Eye at Cincinnati Playhouse, Sarah Ruhl’s Passion Play at Epic (NYC), Yale Repertory and the Goodman Theatre (Chicago), Unconditional (LAByrinth), Craig Lucas’s The Singing Forest (New York Shakespeare Festival/Public Theater), workshops of Brett C. Leonard’s musical Harold’s Harem,  and Stephen Adly Guirgis’ Untitled Ass Play. Wing-Davey has also directed at New York Theatre Workshop, Manhattan Theatre Club, Lincoln Center, Playwrights Horizons, American Conservatory Theater, American Repertory Theater, Berkeley Repertory, Mark Taper Forum, McCarter Theatre, Milwaukee Repertory Theater, Pittsburgh Public, New York Shakespeare Festival/Delacorte, PlayMakers Repertory, Seattle Repertory Theater; London’s Royal Court Theatre, Royal National Theatre, the Actors Center; in the West End, the Edinburgh Festival; and Australia. He is currently the Chair of Graduate Acting at New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts.

News points

  • This is Mansour’s first production in the Humana Festival.
  • The Hour of Feeling received a reading as part of the Public Theater’s Emerging Writers Group Spotlight Series; at Noor Theatre, a company dedicated to supporting and presenting the work of theatre artists of Middle Eastern descent; and at Theater J, as part of their Voices of a Changing Middle East Festival.
  • The Hour of Feeling also received workshops with New York Stage and Film and The Playwrights’ Center, where Mansour is a Core Member.
  • Mansour and Lisa Kron curated a piece together for gay, lesbian and transgender youth called Nuff Said which was performed at Dance Theater Workshop.



Eat Your Heart Out

by Courtney Baron

directed by Adam Greenfield


March 9-31

Bingham Theatre

Alice and Gabe are desperate to adopt a child.  Nance, a single mom just starting to date, struggles to connect with her teenage daughter Evie. And Evie wishes her best friend Colin could fall for her rather than just trying to fix things. With both humor and aching insight, these lives are woven together in a tale of parental hopes and fears, and of hearts consumed by longing.

Courtney Baron: At Actors: The Blue Room as part of Life Under 30 (1999 Humana Festival); Black Fish as part of Back Story (2000 Humana Festival). Baron’s play A Very Common Procedure has been produced at MCC Theater (Dir. Michael Greif), under the title Morbidity and Mortality at the Magic Theatre in San Francisco (Dir. Loretta Greco), and as a part of the Cherry Lane Mentor project, mentored by David Auburn (Dir. Peter DuBois). Eat Your Heart Out was developed with Primary Stages and the Perry-Mansfield New Works Festival. Baron is working on a play commission for P2 Productions titled Good Men Project. Baron holds an M.F.A. from Columbia University.

Adam Greenfield has been Director of New Play Development at Playwrights Horizons since 2007.  Most recently he directed the premiere of Madeleine George’s The Zero Hour for 13P.  From 1997-2006, he was Associate Artistic Director at The Empty Space, where he directed West Coast premieres of Stupid Kids, Adam Baum and The Jew Movie, The Convention of Cartography and Underneath the Lintel. He has also directed and developed new works with The O’Neill, Portland Center Stage, Seattle Repertory, ACT Theatre, Printer’s Devil, Hartford Stage, The Playwrights’ Center, Orlando Shakespeare, Cornish College, Sundance, Washington Ensemble Theatre, Alliance, Philadelphia Theatre Company, New Dramatists, The Lark, Harvard, Clubbed Thumb and Soho Rep.  He attended the University of Michigan and Reed College.

Eat Your Heart Out was developed at the Perry-Mansfield Performing Arts School New Works Festival, June 2011.


News points

  • Baron’s short play The Blue Room received the Heideman Award and was produced as part of Life Under 30 in the 1999 Humana Festival.
  • The Blue Room was also nominated for the American Theatre Critics Association’s Osborn Award.
  • In 2000, Actors Theatre commissioned Baron to write a piece for Back Story, Actors Theatre’s first-ever multi-writer Apprentice Anthology Project.


Death Tax

by Lucas Hnath

directed by Ken Rus Schmoll

March 20 – April 1

Victor Jory Theatre


Maxine is rich. Maxine is dying. Maxine thinks Nurse Tina is trying to kill her. When the patient confronts her caretaker, her accusations have unforeseen—and irrevocable—consequences, in this tightly-wound thriller about money, power and the value of a human life.

Lucas Hnath is thrilled to return to Actors Theatre where his ten-minute play, The Courtship of Anna Nicole Smith, was performed in 2010.  Hnath’s work has also been presented and developed at Ensemble Studio Theatre, Rattlestick Playwrights Theatre, Target Margin and Ontological Theater. He has enjoyed playwriting residencies with The Royal Court Theatre and 24Seven Lab and is currently a resident playwright at New Dramatists. Hnath is a two-time winner of the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation Grant for screenwriting and is a recipient of an Ensemble Studio Theatre/Sloan Project commission for his play, Isaac’s Eye.  Hnath received a B.F.A. and M.F.A. from New York University’s Department of Dramatic Writing. He is a lecturer in NYU’s Expository Writing Program.

Ken Rus Schmoll: New York: Mark Smith, Aphrodisiac, The Internationalist (13P), FUREE in Pins & Needles (Foundry Theatre/FUREE), Middletown, The Internationalist (Vineyard Theatre), What Once We Felt (LCT3), Telethon, Amazons and Their Men, Demon Baby (Clubbed Thumb, affiliated artist), Telephone (Foundry Theatre, OBIE Award), October/November (EST Marathon), Hello Failure (PS 122), Millicent Scowlworthy, Honor and the River (Summer Play Festival), Cause for Alarm (New York Fringe). Regional: Seven Homeless Mammoths Wander New England (Two River Theater Company), Aphrodisiac (Long Wharf Theatre), Honor and the River (New York Stage and Film). Opera/New Music: It Happens Like This (Tanglewood, world premiere), Proserpina (Spoleto Festival USA, American premiere). Upcoming: A Map of Virtue (13P), It Happens Like This (Guggenheim), The Peripherals (The Talking Band).

News points

  • This is Hnath’s first Humana Festival production.
  • Hnath’s ten-minute play The Courtship of Anna Nicole Smith was a finalist for the Heideman Award, and was produced at Actors Theatre in the Apprentice/Intern Tens in 2010.
  • Hnath is a two-time winner of the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation Grant—a grant that awards funding to science- or technology-related narrative projects—for his feature-length screenplays, The Painting, the Machine, and the Apple and Still Life.



Michael von Siebenburg Melts Through the Floorboards

by Greg Kotis

directed by Kip Fagan

March 22 –April 15

Pamela Brown Auditorium

Meet Baron Michael von Siebenburg: a 500-year-old Austrian bachelor living in an American city, whose secret of eternal youth involves endless first dates and a special meat tenderizer. But when his landlady gets suspicious and the ghost of a medieval comrade commands him to take Constantinople back from the Turks, Michael finds himself haunted by past and present. A hilariously dark comedy about the rigors of vampiric immortality.

Greg Kotis is the author of Yeast Nation (Book/Lyrics), The Truth About Santa, Pig Farm, Eat the Taste, Urinetown (Book/Lyrics, for which he won an Obie and two Tony® Awards), and Jobey and Katherine.  Kotis’ work has been produced and developed in many theaters including Actors Theatre of Louisville, American Conservatory Theatre, American Theater Company, Henry Miller’s Theatre, Manhattan Theatre Club, New York Stage and Film, Perseverance Theatre, Roundabout Theatre Company, Soho Rep, South Coast Repertory, and The Old Globe, among others.  Kotis is a member of the Neo-Futurists, the Cardiff Giant Theater Company, American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers, and the Dramatists Guild.  Kotis grew up in Wellfleet, Massachusetts and now lives in Brooklyn with his wife Ayun Halliday, his daughter India, and his son Milo.

Kip Fagan: At Actors: Jennifer Haley’s Neighborhood 3: Requisition of Doom. Regional: Sam Hunter’s A Permanent Image (Boise Contemporary Theater), Jordan Harrison’s Futura (Portland Center Stage), Tommy Smith and Gabriel Kahane’s musical Caravan Man (Williamstown Theater Festival), Kenneth Lonergan’s The Waverly Gallery (Empty Space Theatre). NYC: Jesse Eisenberg’s Asuncion, Heidi Schreck’s There Are No More Big Secrets, and Sheila Callaghan’s That Pretty Pretty; or: The Rape Play (Rattlestick Playwrights Theater); Sheila Callaghan’s Roadkill Confidential and Rachel Hoeffel’s Quail (Clubbed Thumb); Zayd Dohrn’s Reborning and Cory Hinkle’s Cipher (Summer Play Festival); Sheila Callaghan’s Recess and Christopher Durang’s Not a Creature Was Stirring (The Flea Theater); Sam Hunter’s Jack’s Precious Moment (P73); Greg Keller’s The Young Left (Cherry Lane Theatre).  He was a 2003-2004 National Endowment for the Arts/Theatre Communications Group directing fellow and the 2007 Bill Foeller directing fellow at Williamstown Theatre Festival.

News points

  • Kotis’ previous Humana Festival credits include: BRINK! as part of the 2009 Apprentice Anthology, and the ten-minute play An Examination of the Whole Playwright/Actor Relationship Presented as Some Kind of Cop Show Parody in 2010, in which he also played a writer under interrogation named Greg Kotis.
  • Kotis won an Obie Award and 2 Tony® Awards for Urinetown: The Musical (Book/Lyrics).
  • He is the author of many plays and musicals including: Yeast Nation (Book/Lyrics),

The Truth About SantaPig FarmEat the Taste, and Jobey and Katherine.

2012 Apprentice Anthology

Oh, Gastronomy!

by Michael Golamco, Carson Kreitzer, Steve Moulds, Tanya Saracho and Matt Schatz

directed by Amy Attaway

co-conceived and developed with Sarah Lunnie

Performed by the 2011-2012 Acting Apprentice Company

Commissioned by Actors Theatre of Louisville.

March 16- April 1

Bingham Theatre


Food, that most delicious human unifier, is rife with contradiction. It can signal both comfort and compulsion, imply both nourishment and deprivation, and make your mouth water—or your stomach turn. Get ready to dig in, as five hungry playwrights join forces with twenty-two ravenous Acting Apprentices to serve up the pleasures—and paradoxes—of food.

Michael Golamco is a Los Angeles-based playwright and screenwriter. His play Year Zero received acclaimed runs at Victory Gardens Theatre in Chicago and New York City’s Second Stage Theatre; it was also the Grand Prize Winner of Chicago Dramatists’ Many Voices Project. His play Cowboy Versus Samurai has had several productions since its premiere in New York City, including in Canada and Hong Kong. Golamco is the recipient of the 2009 Helen Merrill Award and is a member of New Dramatists. He is currently working on new play commissions for South Coast Repertory and Second Stage Theatre (NYC).

Carson Kreitzer’s plays include Behind the Eye, 1:23, and The Love Song of J. Robert Oppenheimer which premiered at the Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park, directed by Mark Wing-Davey.  Other work includes The Slow Drag (The American Place Theater, The Whitehall Theater, West End), and SELF DEFENSE or death of some salesmen (New Georges).  Grants: National Endowment for the Arts New Play Development Program, New York Film Academy, New York State Council on the Arts, Theatre Communications Group, Jerome and McKnight Foundations, Loewe Award, and the first Playwrights Of New York (PONY) Fellowship through the Lark Play Development Center. Kreitzer is a resident playwright at New Dramatists, and a member of The Workhaus Collective and The Playwrights’ Center. She is currently writing a play for Marin Theatre and a musical with Matt Gould for Yale Repertory. More information at

Steve Moulds is currently the National New Play Network Playwright in Residence at Curious Theatre Company in Denver. A former member of the Actors Theatre literary office, three of his ten-minute plays have been produced here. He also directed the Humana Festival premiere of Dream of Jeannie-by-the-Door. Other productions include Emergency Prom, published by Playscripts; Compound/Complex (Brouhaha Comedy Festival); Von Rollo (Illusion Theater, Minneapolis); Principles of Dramatic Writing (Source Festival); and three plays in the Minnesota Fringe Festival: Killer Smile, Buyer’s Remorse, and See You Next Tuesday. Upcoming work includes a new adaptation of Pirandello’s Six Characters for The Hypocrites (Chicago). Steve holds an M.F.A. in playwriting from the Michener Center for Writers at the University of Texas at Austin.

Tanya Saracho was born in Sinaloa, México and is a resident playwright emerita at Chicago Dramatists, a Goodman Theatre Fellow at the Ellen Stone Belic Institute for the Study of Women and Gender in the Arts and Media at Columbia College Chicago, an Artistic Associate with About Face Theatre and founder and former Artistic Director of Teatro Luna. Plays include: Enfrascada (Clubbed Thumb); El Nogalar (Teatro Vista/Goodman Theatre), an adaptation of The House on Mango Street for Steppenwolf Theatre SYA and Our Lady of the Underpass with Teatro Vista. Awards: Ofner Prize, 3Arts Award, National Endowment for the Arts Distinguished New Play Development Grant. Commissions: Two Mellon Foundation commissions for Steppenwolf Theatre, Goodman Theatre, Oregon Shakespeare Festival, and About Face Theatre.

Matt Schatz is thrilled to return to Actors Theatre after writing the music and lyrics for Michael Lew’s Roanoke (2009 Humana Festival). Other plays and musicals include The Tallest Building in the World (Luna Stage, 2011), Love Trapezoid (Astoria Performing Arts Center, 2012) and Richie Farmer Will Have His Revenge on Durham with Diana Grisanti (“Best of Fest” at Austin’s FronteraFest 2011). Schatz is a three-time recipient of an Ensemble Studio Theatre/Sloan Commission, and has been a finalist for the Fred Ebb Award for excellence in musical theatre songwriting and the P73 Playwriting Fellowship. Schatz is a member of the Ensemble Studio Theatre, the BMI Advanced Musical Theatre Workshop and the Dramatists Guild, and is an alumnus of P73’s “Interstate 73,” and Youngblood at EST. Schatz holds an M.F.A. from Carnegie Mellon University.

Amy Attaway (Director – Oh, Gastronomy!)  Attaway is the Associate Director of the Apprentice/Intern Company at Actors Theatre, and a Co-Artistic Director of Theatre [502].   At Actors: The End, 2011 Humana Festival; Marco Ramirez’s 3:59am: a drag race for two actors, 2009 Humana Festival; The Laramie Project: Ten Years Later (staged reading); many new works with the A/I Company.  Regional Theatre: Assistant Director under Ed Stern on God of Carnage at the Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park.  Other theatre: Broadsword (Theatre [502]); The Last Five Years (Crossroads Repertory Theatre); The Drunken City, Sailor’s Song, Impossible Marriage (The Necessary Theatre).  Attaway is a graduate of the University of Evansville and a proud member of the League of Professional Theatre Women and Actors Equity.

Actors Theatre’s Apprentice/Intern (A/I) Company celebrates its 40th Anniversary. As members of one of the nation’s oldest continuing pre-professional resident training companies, Acting Apprentices and Professional Interns undertake a nine-month program that provides practical training and real-world experience designed to help young theatre artists and administrators in transition from undergraduate study to a professional career in theatre.

News points

  • Every year, Actors Theatre of Louisville commissions a group of playwrights to write a piece about a specific theme for our 22-member Acting Apprentice Company.
  • This year the multi-playwright commission will explore the relationship people have with food in daily life. Previous themes have included the apocalypse, rites of passage, sports in American culture, the rich tradition of vaudeville and the mythology of Las Vegas.
  • Michael Golamco, Carson Kreitzer and Tanya Saracho are all making their Humana Festival debuts.
  • Golamco’s play Year Zero received an acclaimed run at Victory Gardens Theatre in Chicago in the 2008 Ignition Festival. The play was also the Grand Prize Winner of Chicago Dramatists’ Many Voices Project.
  • Kreitzer’s plays Behind the Eye, 1:23, and The Love Song of J. Robert Oppenheimer premiered at the Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park and were directed by Mark Wing-Davey. She is currently writing a musical with Matt Gould for Yale Repertory.
  • Moulds is currently the National New Play Network Playwright in Residence at Curious Theatre in Denver.
  • Saracho is the founder and former artistic director of Chicago’s Teatro Luna. She has recently been commissioned by the Goodman Theatre, Oregon Shakespeare Festival, About Face Theatre, and twice by Steppenwolf Theatre.
  • Schatz was a finalist for the 2009 Fred Ebb Award for excellence in musical theatre songwriting. He recently co-wrote a musical about University of Kentucky basketball with Louisville native Diana Grisanti.


36th Annual Humana Festival of New American Plays Events:


Numerous community-wide events will be held throughout the Humana Festival at Actors Theatre of Louisville. Some highlights include:

March 1 at 6 p.m. – 36th Humana Festival of New American Plays Opening Party and Kickoff  Celebration. Free to the public.

March 3, 7 p.m. – Behind-the-Scenes Tech event for The Hour of Feeling


March 27, 7 p.m. – Behind-the-Scenes Tech event for Michael von Siebenburg Melts Through the Floorboards

March 31, 9-10 p.m. – Harold and Mimi Steinberg/American Theatre Critics Association New Play Award and Citations followed by the Ten-Minute Plays


Locals’ Week (March 1-11): Get your feet wet with Louisville locals! Sample the first few productions of the Humana Festival while enjoying behind-the-scenes tours and more as we kick off the Festival during Locals’ Week.

College Days (March 16-18): An energizing opportunity to enjoy fresh new work during this educational weekend that hosts the theatre professionals of tomorrow.  Get inspired by new work and new leaders. You can also take advantage of package perks such as guaranteed reserved seating and great hotel discounts.  For more information, contact Sarah Peters at (502) 585-1210 or


Theatre Industry Weekends: Join us for one of two customized weekends for industry professionals, press, producers, directors and agents—the ultimate experience of the Humana Festival of New American Plays. Receive the best available seats, exclusive benefits and Actors Theatre of Louisville’s exceptional hospitality. There is no better place to gain inspiration through a continuing conversation with your peers. The Festival creates an atmosphere of exchange, stimulation and devotion to new writing that makes it one of the nation’s great theatrical events.


  • Industry Weekend # 1 (March 23-25): An engaging theatre retreat, this is an intimate weekend with theatre professionals and enthusiasts alike. Meet others who share your interest in great theatre and take advantage of the many exclusive Festival benefits, including networking events, shuttle service and discounted hotel rates.
  • Industry Weekend # 2 (March 30 – April 1): A marathon weekend of world premieres that attracts the theatre industry’s elite.  It’s fast-paced playgoing at its finest, with Festival benefits that include networking events, shuttle service, discounted hotel rates and the closing Gala. Don’t miss your chance to take part in this prestigious theatre weekend!

For more information on Industry Weekends, contact Stephanie Spalding at 502-584-1265 or


If you are planning on attending an Industry Weekend, please note that the Ten-Minute Plays are running March 31 & April 1 only.

New Play Getaway packages offer you a unique opportunity to see a variety of Humana Festival plays over a weekend. Whether you are looking for a leisurely weekend in Louisville, a marathon of theatregoing or something in between, Actors Theatre has a package for you.   For more information, contact Sarah Peters at (502) 585-1210 or



Humana Festival single ticket prices start at $25. Tickets will be available to season ticket holders as of November 14. Festival packages are on sale on November 15. Single Tickets go on sale to the general public on November 18.

For information or reservations call (502) 584-1205 or 800-4-ATL-TIX, or visit our website.

Humana Festival Locals Pass. Locals Passes enable you to see six Humana Festival productions on an extra seat pass basis and can be used throughout the run of the Festival. Passes are only $99 and will go on sale in November 18, 2011.


About the Humana Festival of New American Plays at Actors Theatre of Louisville

The Humana Festival is an internationally acclaimed event that has introduced more than 400 plays into the American and international theatre’s general repertoire, including three Pulitzer Prize winners—The Gin Game by D. L. Coburn, Crimes of the Heart by Beth Henley and Dinner with Friends by Donald Margulies—as well as Rinne Groff’s The Ruby Sunrise, Jane Martin’s Anton in Show Business, Charles L. Mee’s Big Love, Theresa Rebeck’s The Scene, Gina Gionfriddo’s After Ashley and Becky Shaw, UNIVERSES’ Ameriville, Jordan Harrison’s Maple and Vine, Stephen Belber’s Tape and The Civilians’ This Beautiful City. Over 380 Humana Festival plays have been published in anthologies and individual acting editions, making Actors Theatre a visible and vital force in the development of new plays.

The Humana Festival is the premier event of its kind in the nation, drawing audiences of nearly 40,000 last year. For the past 36 years, hundreds of the industry’s most distinguished leaders, producers, critics and admirers have descended upon Louisville for a month-long celebration of new writing for the stage. The Festival culminates in two industry weekends which bring together a collection of amazing new plays with one-of-a-kind panels, cocktail parties, discussions and networking events. It is the perfect opportunity to see new work, make new connections and support the creation of new American theatre.


About Actors Theatre of Louisville

Jennifer Bielstein, Managing Director

Now in its 48th season, Actors Theatre of Louisville, the State Theatre of Kentucky, has emerged as one of America’s most consistently innovative professional theatre companies. Actors Theatre’s programming includes a broad range of classical and contemporary work, presenting more than 500 performances each season. The company performs annually to nearly 200,000 people and is the recipient of the most prestigious awards bestowed on a regional theatre: a special Tony® Award for Distinguished Achievement, the James N. Vaughan Memorial Award for Exceptional Achievement and Contribution to the Development of Professional Theatre, and the Margo Jones Award for the Encouragement of New Plays. Actors Theatre’s international appearances include performances in over 29 cities in 15 foreign countries. Currently, there are more than 40 books of plays and criticism from Actors Theatre in publication and circulation.

Actors Theater of Louisville
316 West Main St.
Louisville, KY 40202
Box Office: 502.584.1205
502.371.0956 TDD

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