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Assembly Series

A tradition of convening thought leaders since 1953

McKelvey School of Engineering

A.E. Hotchner Playwriting Festival 2021

Saturday, September 25 | 7:00 PM

A. E. Hotchner Studio Theatre
6445 Forsyth Blvd., St. Louis, MO 63105

This year three aspiring playwrights will take part in a two-week workshop to develop their plays from the page to the stage. Guest dramaturg, Liza Birkenmeier AB '08, a recent playwright-in-residence at New York talent hub Ars Nova will mentor the writers during the workshop, supported by faculty directors and PAD actors.  We invite you to become a part of the playwriting process at the script-in-hand staged reading of each play.  After each presentation there will be a post-show discussion with the playwright and guest dramaturg in which you, the audience, are an integral part of the process and an ongoing participant in the development of each play.

All readings will take place in-person in the A.E. Hotchner Studio Theatre.  Admission is free and open to the public.

Please note that for all in-person events, attendees must adhere to Washington University’s public health requirements, including the latest events and meetings protocol. Guests will be required to show a successful self-screening result and wear a mask at all times.

Front Porch Steps
by Megan Gooden

directed by Jacqueline Thompson

Friday, September 24, 2021
7:00 p.m.

Ally and Eric lead an imperfect life filled with moments of happiness and plagued by echoes of uncertainty. One morning an 18-year-old girl named Tawni arrives on her bicycle and invites herself in. She brings with her, immediacy, honesty and the memories of a sister who is no longer standing beside her. With an unsubtle presence akin to blunt force trauma, Tawni confronts the couple, exposes their friends, and gently indicates a better way to go forward, until her sister calls her back.

Kent Styles
by Zachary Stern

directed by Pannill Camp

Saturday, September 25, 2021
2:00 p.m.

Kent Styles is probably not a nice guy. He’s fresh out of prison and needs a quick score to avoid some harsh local consequences. With an assist from his sometimes girlfriend, he targets his blind, but reliable Uncle Fred, and far less patient wife, Liz. Having been burnt before, should they trust Kent? It’s a rock and a hard place, as this time, Kent is suggesting they pull the plug on their long comatose and vegetative son, to accommodate his situation.

Decadents Gone Wilde
By J. Myles Hesse

directed by Annamaria Pileggi

Saturday, September 25, 2021
7:00 p.m.

In 1896, the infamous celebrity Oscar Wilde languishes in a prison cell for crimes of "gross indecency," while his best friend and sometimes lover, Robbie Ross, plans a desperate bid to expedite his release. All proceeds according to his plan until Oscar's estranged wife and his tempestuous boyfriend threaten to undo all of Robbie's work as they seek to supplant the other as Oscar's favorite. Robbie is left to negotiate an impossible truce, all the while coming to terms with his blossoming affection for a seductive rent-boy who refuses to leave his home.

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Speaker Information

The 2021 A.E. Hotchner Playwriting Festival Announces Featured Playwrights.

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