Welcome to Avant Bard Theatre’s seventh annual Scripts in Play Festival. For the first time we’re taking Scripts in Play outside the theatre and into Arlington County art galleries: the newly named Museum of Contemporary Art Arlington, (MoCA Arlington) and the Fred Schnider Gallery of Art! Additionally, we are collaborating with Arlington’s Jane Franklin Dance, for our first set of staged readings, Torn by John Becker. We are thrilled to partner with these fellow Arlington arts organizations to bring you captivating and exciting readings amidst inspiring and thought-provoking visual art.
As in prior years, Avant Bard invites audiences attending this free festival to join us for both readings for each script. Avant Bard invites the audience to provide feedback and perspectives to the participating playwright after the initial reading. Following the initial reading, the playwright may choose to make changes based on the first reading and audience feedback. Avant Bard then hands the updated scripts to the director and actors during a mini workshop rehearsal before the second reading. We encourage audience members attending the initial reading to join us again for the second reading to see the new developments!
The festival is free to attend.
by John Becker
Directed by DeMone Seraphin, with dance interludes performed by Jane Franklin Dance
When: Thursday, November 10, at 7:30 p.m. // Saturday, November 12, at 2 p.m.
When Booker T. Washington was invited by Teddy Roosevelt to dinner at the White House, both gentleman were unaware of the shock waves this meeting would cause in communities across the nation. In 1901, the public was nowhere near ready to accept a former slave and an American president eating together as equals. The extreme right wing found its voice in the form of Senator Ben Tillman, whose sly words echo eerily in the hateful speech we hear today. In this play, Torn, we see that American history is still being written, as though the conflicts of Washington and Roosevelt are lingering under our modern surface. In many ways, we are still torn.
Avant Bard is grateful to MoCA Arlington, who will be co-hosting the Torn staged readings.
by Doug Robinson
Directed by Randy Baker
When: Friday, November 18, at 7:30 p.m. // Sunday, November 20, at 2 p.m.
The Figs is a very loose adaptation of a 19th century Bavarian folk tale of the same name. The Figs is a play about the nature of storytelling and the tellers of stories. With a Mad King obsessed with figs, a headstrong Princess in love with an innkeeper, a boy whose only friend is a swan, and a storyteller with many tricks up their sleeve, The Figs is a call for audiences to remember the wonder held inside a good story.
Avant Bard is grateful to MoCA Arlington, who will be co-hosting the The Figs staged readings.
A Lovely Light
by Hannah Land
Directed by Megan Behm, Producing Partner Emerita
When: Friday, December 2, at 7:30 p.m. (face masks strictly mandatory at this performance) // Sunday, December 4, at 2 p.m.
Based on true events, A Lovely Light follows poet Edna St. Vincent Millay on a 1921 trip to Paris that was supposed to make her career. Instead of finding literary success, she spends her time abroad dealing with a disabling illness, heartbreak, writer’s block, and the consequences of her own mistakes. In order to save her writing career and seize a second chance at love, Edna must do something previously unthinkable: admit her weaknesses and ask for help. A Lovely Light introduces audiences to the queer, disabled poet whose writing still captures readers a century later.
Avant Bard Theatre is committed to making its programming accessible for all people. Because of the shared nature of Scripts in Play, and the many patrons and artists who participate in this unique program, we kindly request that visitors to each reading please wear a fitted face mask to protect the health and wellbeing of our community. Together, we can ensure an uninterrupted return to live theatre.
Tickets: Please note that Scripts in Play is a FREE festival. Avant Bard encourages audience members who are able and willing, to consider making a donation following your visit. Support from the community is essential to keeping Avant Bard programming affordable and, in the case of Scripts in Play free, and allows us to fairly and competitively compensate the artists and directors involved with our programming.
Accessibility: All venues for the 2022 Festival are accessible to anyone with limited mobility. Please note, the Museum of Contemporary Art Arlington is fully ADA compliant and wheelchair accessible. Please use the elevator entrance on the parking lot side of the building. If you require additional accommodations (such as an ASL Interpreter), please contact our team at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will endeavor to secure the appropriate accommodations for the requested performance(s).
Public Transportation: Each venue is located within walking distance of the Virginia Square-GMU metro station, on the Orange and Silver lines of the Washington Metro. From D.C., visitors may take the 38B bus toward Ballston-MU from Farragut Square. Within Arlington, patrons may use local bus lines 41, 42, or 75 of Arlington Rapid Transit.