Dramaturgy, a largely emerging profession is secretly, in my opinion, the key to moving forward in changing the face of the American Theatre. Approaching pieces with a dramaturgical perspective, whether it be production dramaturgy, or new play development dramaturgy, inherently creates a sense of holistic responsibility to the story being told and audiences experiencing it. I would like to focus especially on the importance of the dramaturg in new play development as I believe that the creation of new stories is the strongest manner to move the traditional theater into a more inclusive, direction that genuinely reflects the human experience.
As a young playwright trained in dramaturgy in a university setting, I have had the opportunity to execute some dramaturgical tasks like writing program notes for a play, or being a dramaturg on my friend’s new play for a span of a couple of months. These two exercises in combination with the our current semester of studying contemporary plays in a deep and efficient manner, has created a nice rich bed of tools and knowledge for my first post grad project. I am very privileged to have Jess Malone as my first dramaturg as I finish my play “Lithosphere Heart” in preparation for the Theater Offensive workshop and staged reading performance at the end of August. Jess has also gone through the same progression of classes and projects and let me just say that this woman is a brilliant new work dramaturg. Yesterday was our first meeting after having read what I had of the play. We met at Panera across the street from the CFA, and given the very biographical content of the play, she slyly just started asking me questions about my life which then progressed into me giving here the main plot-points of my life from the age of 2 to 18. She then proceeded to feed back to me all I said in a way that prompted a rich conversation about images, tension, and ideas for how to play with time, and actions building on each other. I left the meeting feeling so excited and ready to delve into some major writing and structuring. THE JOURNEY OF THIS PLAY HAS BEGUN!!!