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August 2015 Newsletter

29 Aug 2015 8:34 PM | Mona Curtis

Member Spotlight  Alan Woods

by Debbie Miller

Alan L. Woods is a retired teacher of theatre at Ohio State University and an active dramaturg in Columbus, Ohio who says he's been a member of ICWP "since at least 1990 or thereabouts."

Q: What do you write? 

A:  I write short plays for seniors and prequels/sequels to Shakespeare.

Q:  Where have your plays been produced?

A:  In academic and senior theatre companies in the United States, Canada, Japan, and South Africa.

Q:  What does writing plays teach you about yourself as a writer? 

A:  Writing plays forces me to listen to the characters as their voices are highly individual. It also teaches me to edit myself with a firm hand.

Q:  What other activities associated with theatre do you do?

A:  I work as a dramaturg and organizer of readings. I've been a dramaturg since about 1990 at local theatres in Columbus (CATCO, Players' Theatre, Available Light Theatre, Bread & Circus Theatre Company, Evolution Theatre Company) and at Indiana Reperatory Theatre and in Kentucky at Horse Cave Theatre.

Q:  What has dramaturgy taught you?

A:  Being a dramaturg helps me to constantly question, re-evaluate, rework. And revise, revise, revise.

Q:  What's your most recent project?

A:  The Food Plays: 5-minute plays centering on food, at the Clintonville Community market in Columbus, as part of the neighborhood festival "CrestFest" on August 22nd. The project received some 65 plays and a panel of evaluators (which included some ICWP members) selected five plays to be given staged readings.

Q:  As a former theater professor, what is the most important thing you'd like theater students to know about plays and playwriting? 

A:  That it's a group exercise, whether one artist is central or artistic direction is arrived at by some variation of consensus. No one creates alone--no one!

Q:  How can men support women playwrights?

A:   By promoting their work, by agreeing to collaborate, by auditioning, by being aware of women writers, and by encouraging them.

Welcome New Members

Rosalie Greenfield Matzkiin, Philadelphia, USA

Rosalie Greenfield Matzkiin, Ed.D  Born in NYC American Citizen, I currently reside in Philadelphia PA.  First an English teacher, then editor and newspaper reporter in NYC, all the while writing songs and short pieces of fiction.  I collaborated with a NY composer,  Robert Trien, and we wrote a musical, Curse You Jack Dalton which was performed in NY at a street fair and then went to the BMI Music Theater Writing Workshop for several years.  Wrote an adaptation of Jane Austen's Persuasion and used it as doctoral pre-dissertation coursework.

Subsequently have been working with a Philadelphia composer, Al Blatter, (teaches at the Curtis Institute of Music) and we have had two workshops of our musical No Complications Please!  one at MITF in NY and the other at the University of the Arts in Philadelphia, for which I wrote libretto and lyrics and Al Blatter the music.

I have been taking playwriting workshops at HB Studios and Primary Stages in NY and this spring wrote a new play in a Philadelphia playwriting workshop, at PlayPenn, called Unexpected. (It is not about her, but  does use Gabby Gifford as inspiration.). I have also recently completed drafts of 5 ten minute plays and am writing a new play, Sarah and Max, that takes place near the Swiss border of Austria during WWII.  Most of my work posits strong women protagonists.

 l am interested in women's work, and I enjoy sharing and collaborating and being supportive.

Mercedes Cohen, San Francisco, USA

Playwriting has been my passion for most of my life, but like many, survival and making a living got in the way.  Now I’m retired and working two plays. Living in California in the San Francisco Bay area suits me well. My play, Giovanni Is Here won the Ross Alternative Works award in 2014 and had wonderful production with a great cast. The plot revolves around three diverse viewpoints during World War II in Italy.

I’m interested in women playwrights and what’s new.

A video of my work: 

Kay Adshead, USA & UK

Kay Adshead is a poet, playwright and theatre maker. She has written over 25 plays including Thatcher’s Women for Paines Plough at The Tricycle (nominated for the Susan Smith Blackburn Award), Bacillus for the Royal Court, Animal for Soho Theatre Company (nominated for Encore Best Play of Year), Lady Chill for the RNT‘s BT Connections, and Juicy Bits for The Lyric Hammersmith main house. In 2013, she contributed I am sad you are dead Mrs T for Theatre 503’s Thatcherwrite. In 2014, she wrote Happy Ending for Natural Shocks’ Peep. Her plays have been published by Oberon, Methuen, and Faber and Faber. In 1999, with the late Lucinda Gane, she co-founded award-winning theatre company Mama Quilla, producing The Bogus Woman (Fringe First, Adelaide Fringe Sensation Award, M.E.N. award for best actress, nominated for E.M.M.A. and Susan Smith Blackburn Award), playing the Traverse and The Bush. Their second production Bites played the Bush (nominated for Susan Smith Blackburn Award) and their third production Bones premiered at Haymarket Leicester, transferring to the Bush. All plays have subsequently been produced internationally. She has devised and directed over 15 plays for Mama Quilla, working in communities with casts of over 50. Theatre of Protest at the Roundhouse in 2012 involved over 80 performers and 8 new commissions. In 2014, she wrote Veil the Poem, directed by Kully Thiarai for Shanaz Gulzar’s immersive installation, playing The Alchemy Festival at The South Bank. In 2015, she wrote and directed The Singing Stones at The Arcola. She is currently producing Acts of Defiance, a multimedia online project, contributing five short plays and two three-minute films shot in Houston, Texas, and New York. Kay lives in Houston and London.

Jo Brisbane, Cape Cod, USA

Jo Brisbane is an actor, author and playwright, writing year round on Cape Cod, MA. Abandoned machinery and people frequently appear in her plays, prose and poetry. Her professional writing has ranged from print journalism to broadcast interview and editing. She walks the wrack line frequently, unless a Nor'easter is predicted.

Khai Dattoli, Wisconsin, USA

Originally from Wisconsin, Khai Dattoli has spent the past twelve years in Los Angeles writing and performing comedy. The USC graduate has worked in film, webseries, and stand-up, but her greatest passion has been bringing original comedies to the theatre. Dattoli has had four of her plays successfully produced in Los Angeles. The latest, "Off Book," is currently playing at the Secret Rose Theatre in North Hollywod, and this summer also brings her writing debut in NYC with Theatre 68's production of "Off White," the first in her series of "Off Comedies."

Kelly DuMar, Boston, USA

Kelly is a playwright, poet and creative arts workshop facilitator from the Boston Area. She founded the Our Voices Annual Festival of Boston Area Women Playwrights, held at Wellesley College, now in its 9th year. She's a former President of Plawrights' Platform, Boston, and an Advisory Board Member of the International Women's Writing Guild and the Transformative Language Arts Association. Learn more at

Anne Flanagan

Anne Flanagan is a writer/actor, theatre teacher and Women's Health Care consultant. She has also worked as a private investigator, which is not nearly as exciting as one might think.

Anne has won many playwriting awards and has been produced throughout the United States and Canada.

Publications include her full length comedy, Artifice, (Dramatic Publishing); Best Women's Monologues 2013 (Smith and Kraus), Best Contemporary Monologues 2014 (Applause)

Residencies include the Kennedy Center Playwright's Intensive, StonyBrook/South Hampton Writer's Conference, and the Kenyon College Playwright's Institute.

Catherine Pearson Tully, USA

Playwright, Screenwriter, Actress,Voice-over

Born and educated in the United Kingdom. Catherine, is a prize winning author. She has written many plays, screen plays, short stories and poetry and children’s books.

March 2014 – Winner of 7th Annual International Jewish, Short Play Contest, THE LOST CHILDREN.


Winner Florida International Play contest: KISS ME, EDNA (Full length play)

Strand: Winner play contest: PLACEMENT (Full length play)



Tori Rice, San Diego, USA

Tori Rice is a playwright, teaching artist (with Playwrights Project, San Diego, CA) and actress (stage/film = Tori King). Plays include PARTIAL RIGHTS (Playwrights Project, San Diego, CA); BOTTLED IN, BABY (New Perspective Festival, San Diego, CA); COMMON SKIPPERS (Lyceum Theatre, Tempe, AZ); and personal narrative pieces YARD SALE (SMoCA Lit Lounge, Scottsdale, AZ), IMPERFECT (Spark! Powerhouse Theatre, Venice, CA) and MAGNET & STEEL (Scripps Ranch, San Diego, CA). She is a founding member of the San Francisco-based Club Solo, as well as a former ensemble member of the groups New American Theatre (Los Angeles, CA) and Aurora Mime Theatre (Tempe, AZ). Favorite roles include her critically acclaimed one-person show, THE MORE MEN WEIGH (Edmonton Fringe); Patti, STRAIGHT TALK (LA, Odyssey Theatre); Ophelia, THE HAMLETMACHINE (ASU and Emporia State University); and Annelle, STEEL MAGNOLIAS (Winterstock Regional Theatre, AZ, Best Supporting Actress). She has appeared in dozens of commercials and films, with the latest film production opening soon on the Midway Museum in San Diego, CA (VOICES OF THE MIDWAY).

Results of the August Board Meeting

During the Annual Meeting new Board members where elected.  During the Board Meeting this month, officers were assigned and committee assignments given. 

Karen Marijke Jeynes,  South Africa, President 2013-2015

Lucia Verona, Rumania, Vice President 2013-2015, Membership Committee

Sophia Romma, USA, Vice President 2013-2015, On-line Communication Co-Chair, Fundraising Chair

Sharon Wallace, USA, Secretary 2013-2015, Networking Committee

Laurie Smilan, USA, Elected July 2015

Eliza Wyatt, UK, Elected July 2015

Patricia L. Morin, USA, Elected July 2015

Rita Kniess Barkey, USA, Elected July 2015

Mona Clair Curtis, USA, Newsletter Editor, 2013-2015, Membership Committee

Coni Ciongoli-Koepfinger, USA, Networking Chair,  On-line Communication Co-Chair


Elana Gartner, Volunteer Manager, Applause Awards Co-Chair, Networking Committee

Note:  Kris Bauske  is staying on as co-chair of the Applause Awards Committee, although she is not returning to the Board

We also want to recognize our member volunteers. 

Thank You to all our Volunteers

50/50 Applause Award

Ibadete Abazi

Diane Baia Hale

Rita Barkey

Elise Geither

Sylvie Grimm (non-member. Committe and translator)

Chi Wei Hlivka (non-member. Committee and translator)

Mami Kimura (non-member. Translator)

Arwen Mitchell

Debbie Tan

Sharon Wallace

Maximillian Hollander  (non-member:  Video Editor)

Guest Tweeters

Laura Shamas

Pat Morin

Jenni Munday

Sarah Bewley

Script Reading Groups

Nina Gooch

Spotlight Writer

Debbie Wilson

Articles of Interest


Israeli Stage in Boston has announced a full season of Israeli women playwrights.

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