Press DUTF 2015
Published on: Mar 4, 2016
Transcripts - Press DUTF 2015
Click for More Articles on NEW YORK CITY...
13th Annual Downtown Urban
Theater Festival Launches
👤by BWW News Desk
This page has been shared 1 times. View these Tweets.
The Downtown Urban Theater Festival (Reg E. Gaines, Artistic Director) will
present its 13th annual season in New York City today, May 13th - 30th, 2015.
Founded in 2001 with the purpose of building a fresh repertoire of stories that
echo the true spirit of urban life while speaking to a whole new generation whose
lives defy categorizing along conventional lines, the 13th annual Downtown
Urban Theater Festival (DUTF) will be presented on the Mainstage at HERE (145
6th Avenue, Enter on Dominick St. -- one block south of Spring St. -- in NYC).
This year, DUTF will present seventeen new stage works by eighteen of
America's finest emerging playwrights, all sharing stories that interpret our history
and our times through live performances fusing theatre, dance, music, media and
The 13th annual Downtown Urban Theater Festival commenced with a special
Opening Night event, which took place tonight, May 12th at 8:00 p.m. at 40/40
Club (6 West 25th Street, NYC). Acclaimed playwright/director/actor Danny Hoch
(Pot Melting, Some People, and Jails, Hospitals, & Hip-Hop) will receive the 2015
DUTF Playwright Masters Award, awarded to a writer that embodies the spirit of
the Downtown Urban Theater Festival, at the event. Previous honorees of the
DUTF Playwright Masters Award include Nilo Cruz (Pulitzer Prize winner for Anna
in the Tropics) and Adrienne Kennedy (OBIE Award winner for Funnyhouse of a
Founded in 2001, The Downtown Urban Theater Festival held its inaugural
festival in 2002 at HERE in SoHo to help revitalize the NYC downtown arts
scene, which was at the time experiencing a severe downturn following the WTC
disaster. For the past thirteen years, DUTF has presented 147 plays written by
119 writers from across America's burgeoning multicultural landscape. Many of
DUTF's previous playwrights have gone on to have their work presented in
venues across the country, earning awards and other distinctions, including:
Dominique Morisseau (DUTF 2006), whose play Detroit '67 was the 2014
Edward M. Kennedy Prize winner for Drama Inspired by American History; Karen
Anzoategui, whose play Ser (DUTF 2012) went on to be produced by the Los
Angeles Theatre Company and to win two LA Weekly Awards from five
nominations in 2014; Helena D. Lewis, who won the 2014 AUDELCO Award for
Best Solo Performance for Call Me Crazy (DUTF 2006); Darian Dauchan, whose
play Death Boogie (DUTF 2012) won two awards for Best New Music and Best
Innovation at the 2012 Edinburgh Fringe Festival in Scotland; Mayda Del Valle
(Culture Bandit - DUTF 2002 and 2004), who went on to be take part in the Tony
Award winning Russell Simmons Def Poetry Jam on Broadway in 2003, and also
to present excerpts of her poetic writings before President Obama and the First
Lady at the White House in 2009.
DUTF has been recognized as "one of the world's best festivals for new works"
and described as "not only prestigious, but a slice of heaven for playwrights who
want the chance to freely express themselves." (Lisa Mulcahy, Theater Festivals,
Allworth Press, 2005).
Two-time Tony Award nominee Reg E. Gaines (Bring in Da Noise, Bring in Da
Funk) returns as DUTF's Artistic Director. The Downtown Urban Theater Festival
is staffed by T. Marc Newell, Founder and Producer; Bill Toles, Production
Manager; DeVante Lewis, Playwright Coordinator; and Edgardo Miranda-
Rodriguez, Graphic Design/Creative Services.
The 13th annual Downtown Urban Theater Festival will showcase emerging
voices from all over the New York City area as well as from around the country.
Their stories express ideas on love, social change, human existence, and
survival as we travel from the beautiful city of Paris to the Renaissance of Harlem
and the slums of present-day Chicago.
This year, DUTF will proudly launch the New York International Urban Film Fest
(NUFF) as part of its programming to provide an outlet for diverse emerging
filmmakers to share stories and artistic reform. NUFF's mission is to create a
marriage between theater and film by presenting works with strong theatrical
elements that focus more on dramatic text and less on visual effects. DUTF has
been inspired by several of its past playwrights who have incorporated film
elements into stage plays or later adapted their plays into films, such as The
Northern Kingdom and Crush (winner of the Best Short Film Script Competition
at the 2011 NY International Latino Film Festival). As DUTF allows writers to
bring their work from the page to the stage, NUFF will include works adapted
from the stage to the screen. Desmond Hall, acclaimed filmmaker and former
Creative Director for Spike Lee, is the Curator for NUFF.
For more information, selected films and screening schedule, visit
RUN. HIDE. BE QUIET.
By Shyla Idris (New York)
Thursday, May 28th at 8:30 PM (presented in a double bill with Outside the Box)
A woman finds herself confined to a seclusion room on an inpatient psychiatric
ward. Here she will have to wrestle with her sanity, her family, a dark secret and
her future . . . if she can get out.
SHYLA IDRIS is a self-taught painter, photographer, actor, writer and filmmaker.
Her first film, RELEASED, is a Documentary Short on suicide and the failure of
the mental health system, premiering at The Reel Recovery Film Festival Fall
2015 at Quad Cinema NYC. She is currently writing her memoir "Committed"
about her childhood and later commitment to the infamous Creedmoor
Psychiatric Center. She dedicates her work to her late twin brother Robbie and
survivors everywhere. susanspangenberg.com.