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A Lakewood Center Associates Fundraiser

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Young Playwrights Festival 2023

Monday March 20, 2023
7:00-9:30 PM / $10 Admission

Presented on the SIDE DOOR STAGE At Lakewood Center For the Arts in the lower level of the building

This year's Young Playwright's festival is being coordinated and directed by Matthew B. Zrebski

Young Playwrights Festival (YPF) is a collection of theatrical "microworks" short plays by High School playwrights from the Portland metro area who have been selected to work with professional directors, actors and playwrights to gain insight, experience and feedback to develop their writing. The culmination of this process is to experience the audience response at this presentation of their work.

Playwrights West is a non-profit theatre company in Portland whose mission is to provide platforms for playwrights in the Pacific Northwest. Its education arm offers the Teen West Ink residency program for playwriting. Playwriting Mentors go into 5-8 regional public schools each season, serving around 275 students annually. The young playwrights featured in YPF this year have all gone through this program. Their talent, drive, and professionalism are considered exceptional, and so these five gifted artists were invited to participate in this exciting developmental process.

This year's Young Playwrights are:
Niku Edlund-Farsad (Lincoln) / Elias Kaplan (Wells) / Amelia Schafer (Lincoln)
Ian Lafrenz (Wells) / Alissa Cohen (Sam Barlow)

The Actors bringing the characters in these plays life are:
Tom Walton / Melissa Whitney / Connor French / Crystal Ann Munoz

Mentoring the Actors are DRAMATURGS:
Cynthia Whitcomb and Conor Eifler About the Director

Matthew B. Zrebski is a multi-award winning director, playwright, composer, script consultant, teaching artist, and producer whose career has been defined by new play development and innovative productions. Recent directing credits include How I Learned to Drive, Hide, Orlando, I Want to Destroy You, Up the Fall, and Bob: A Life in Five Acts. His recently produced writing includes Arm, One Move, Shiver: a musical ghost story, Red in the Cloud, In a Single Breath, Offended!, Carnivora, Chrysalis, and Ablaze: an a cappella musical thriller, which received its New York City premiere in 2019. The cast albums of both Ablaze and Shiver along with his electronic albums We Persist and Chamber have all been distributed by Woodsway Entertainment. And the recently released short film, Swipe Left, features his original score. A passionate advocate for arts education, he's the former Resident Teaching Artist at Portland Center Stage and is on staff with the Acting Academy at Oregon Children's Theatre. He is the current Director of Education for Playwrights West, overseeing both the Teen West Ink Playwriting Residency Program as well as the Teen West Project New Work Development Production Program. He is a proud member of the Dramatists Guild of America and is an alumnus of The Recording Academy. He holds a BFA in Theatre Studies from the Meadows School of the Arts at Southern Methodist University where he graduated summa cum laude.

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