This is an in-person event. To best protect everyone present for these gatherings, all patrons 5 and older will be required to present proof of full vaccination upon entry. Additionally, all patrons must wear face masks. For more information, please see our full COVID Safety Guidelines.
**Please note, the plays contain adult language, themes, and references.
Let’s Try That Again by Anthony Delfi
A Colored Girl in Yellow by Nina Riley
marcus d. harvey
October 23, 3:00pm
The Actors Theatre Workshop
145 W 28th St, 3F New York, NY 10001
Join us for the invited readings of our 2022-2023 Mark Plesent Commission Fund Recipients, Anthony Delfi and Nina Riley. As the culmination of their commission, we invite our Working Theater community to join us in support of the development of these brand new one-act plays as our playwrights hear their work out loud for the first time with an audience. The afternoon runs approximately 90 minutes with a brief intermission between the two plays. Reservations are on a first come, first served basis, and space is limited. Please use the link below to save your space today.
These pieces were commissioned through the Mark Plesent Commission Fund. To learn more about the fund and its history, please click here.
Let’s Try That Again
Jean’s father Patrick is in his last months of life, when the doctor’s orders give him a chance at rebirth. A sci-fi twist on aging, caregiving, and making the most of the time we have left with the ones we love.
A Colored Girl In Yellow
A family is torn apart by the loss of their grandma. With the help of a backyard garden, they learn to handle loss, grief, and conflict in their journey back home.
Anthony Delfi (Playwright) is originally from NYC but currently residing in New Jersey, and has spent 18 years laboring as part of NYC’s working class. After trying something new on a whim a few years ago, he’s found a fulfilling and creative path in writing for the stage. He’ll be hoping and trying his best to make you laugh and cry as often as possible. Sharing your creative voice is one of the greatest ways to live. It’s a lesson the theater has taught him and one he hopes his work can adequately express.
Geanina (Nina) Riley (Playwright) is a multi-hyphenate storyteller based in Brooklyn, and born and raised in Philly. As a lifelong learner with a passion for decolonization and collaborative arts, she’s created curriculums, theater performances, and justice campaigns alongside nonprofits that advocate for black, queer, and marginalized communities. Organizations include ExpandED Schools, The African American Policy Forum, vibeTheater Experience, and now the National Urban League; all of which have supplemented her artistic practice and activism agenda. Her work interrogates and centers the intersection between black femme identity, sex, spirituality, and community. She will further explore these interests come fall 2022 at New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts M.A. program for Art and Public Policy. Geanina holds a B.A. in Political Science with a minor in Environmental Art and Social Practice from Pace University. She is a recipient of The Pace University Jurors Prize in Art, and the LGBTQ Center Division of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Advocate of the Year.
J. Holtham (Anthony’s Mentor) is a screenwriter, playwright, comic book writer and blogger. TV:PITCH (Fox), MARVEL’S CLOAK & DAGGER (Freeform), MARVEL’S JESSICA JONES (Netflix), SUPERGIRL (CW), THE HANDMAID’S TALE (Hulu). Theatre: Ensemble Studio Theatre, Williamstown Theatre Festival, Second Stage Theater, Bespoke Plays. Essays and reporting: American Theatre, Thrillist, Slate. Comics: Star Trek: The Mirror War, Marvel Voices: Legacy (2022), Spider-verse Unlimited. Podcasts: Marvel’s Wastelanders: Hawkeye. On the board of the 24 Hour Plays and Ojai Playwrights Conference. He is a proud product of public education.
Chisa Hutchinson (B.A. Vassar College; M.F.A NYU – TSoA) (Nina’s Mentor) has presented her plays, which include She Like Girls, Somebody’s Daughter, Surely Goodness & Mercy, Whitelisted and Dead & Breathing at such venues as Atlantic Theater Company, Contemporary American Theater Fest, the National Black Theatre, Second Stage, and Arch 468 in London. Her radio drama, Proof of Love, can be found on Audible (with a boss rating). She’s been a New Dramatist, a Dramatists Guild Fellow, a Lark Fellow, a Humanitas Fellow, a NeoFuturist, and a staff writer for the Blue Man Group. Chisa has also won a GLAAD Award, a Lilly Award, a New York Innovative Theatre Award, a Helen Merrill Award, and the Lanford Wilson Award. She staffed on two television series currently in production—Three Women (Showtime) and Tell Me Lies (Hulu)— and is currently creating another with producers Karamo Brown (Queer Eye) and Stephanie Allain (Hustle & Flow, Dear White People) for Showtime. Her first original feature, THE SUBJECT, in which a white documentarian deals with the moral fallout from exploiting the death of a black teen, is available on various VOD platforms after a successful film festival circuit during which it won over 30 prizes. To learn more, visit www.chisahutchinson.com.
Kareem Fahmy (Anthony’s Director) is a Canadian-born director and playwright of Egyptian descent. He is happy to be back at Working Theatre after directing the world premiere of Adam Kraar’s Alternating Currents in 2018. The world premiere of Kareem’s play Dodi & Diana is currently running at HERE Arts Center. Kareem has developed and directed work at Atlantic Theatre Company, New York Theatre Workshop, MCC, Ensemble Studio Theatre, The New Group, New Dramatists, Geva Theatre, Portland Stage, Northlight, San Diego Rep, Contemporary American Theatre Festival, Berkeley Rep, and more. Fellowships/Residencies: Sundance Theatre Lab, The Old Globe (Classical Directing Fellow), Oregon Shakespeare Festival (Phil Killian Directing Fellow), The O’Neill (National Directors Fellow), Second Stage (Van Lier Directing Fellow), Soho Rep (Writer/Director Lab), Lincoln Center (Directors Lab). Kareem is Co-Founder and Chair of the Middle Eastern American Writers Lab. MFA in Theatre Directing: Columbia University. www.kareemfahmy.com
marcus d. harvey (Nina’s Director) is an award-winning performer, writer, director & educator. He holds his MFA in Acting from Brooklyn College, MA in Dramatic Writing for Social Change from NYU and dual undergraduate degrees in Dramatic Arts and Performance Studies from UNC-Chapel Hill. As an actor, he has performed for such companies as Lean Ensemble (Hilton Head, SC), National Black Theatre (Harlem, NY), Triad Stage (Greensboro, NC), The Old Vic (London), Playmaker's Rep (Chapel Hill, NC), Illinois Shakespeare Festival (Normal, IL), WAM Theatre (Lenox, MA), and TADA! Theatre (New York). He has been on the small and big screen. As a writer, he has written three solo shows, homegrown, Are We Not
Men? and baba: a black boy’s cry. He is currently at work on a play, a bright light, centered around suicide/depression and mental health in Black & Latin communities in Trenton, NJ. As a director, he has directed for Lean Ensemble, Arts Center of Coastal Carolina, Bernards High School, Passage Theatre Company, Marymount Manhattan College, LaGuardia Community College, Potomac Theatre Project, The National Black Theatre, Luna Stage and Harlem 9 working with Nikkole Salter. As an educator, marcus has taught at NJCU, Bernards High School, LaGuardia High School, Franklin & Marshall College, Marymount Manhattan College and Borough of Manhattan Community College. He is currently on faculty at Montclair State University.
Robert Arcaro has been performing and producing theater for the last 48 years. He has appeared in the first professional New York productions of many original plays with the Working Theater, the Abingdon Theater, the Drilling Company, the Workshop Theater, the Italian American Repertory Theater and Theater for the New City. Robert is a founding member of the Working Theater Company. He has served on its Board of Directors since 1987 and as artistic director from 1996 until
2004. Most recently Robert appeared in the Drilling Company production of The Winter’s Tale, the Theater for the New City’s production of A Healthy House and a Working Theater workshop reading of That’s Life by Steve Monarque on Theater Row. On television, he has appeared on Law and Order, Fringe and Katy Keene and in film No Pay, Nudity written and directed by Lee Wilkoff starring Gabriel Byrne. Robert continues to be an active Board member with the Working Theater and performs in their educational programs for working people. He is pleased to be working with the cast and crew of Let’s Try That Again and the Working Theater.
Maggie Bofill Founding member of LAByrinth Theater Company, member Ensemble Studio Theater (EST) Most Recent: Wrote and featured in nationally televised PBS Short CubanAmericanGothic, STAGE: Stage: Elena, All of Me, Barrington Stage Co. (World Premiere) Dir: Ashley Brooke Monroe: Miranda, The Formula (World Premiere) Queen Alonso, The Tempest, Santa Cruz Shakespeare: Bella, The Sound Inside, Theater Works Hartford, Dir. Rob Ruggiero: Nora, A Doll’s House Part Two, The Longwharf Theater, Dir. Will Davis: Armida, Mojada: A Medea in Los Angeles, St. Louis Rep. Dir: Rebecca Martinez: Blanca in The 24 Hour Plays Viral Monologues, Writer Michael John Garcés: TV/FILM: High Town, The Path, Smash, Law&Order SVU. And most proud to have been Carlos Cotto’s mentor as part of the first the Mark Plesent Commission fund at Working theater last year.
Bob Jaffe is honored to be working once again with The Working Theater. Previous projects include the IBEW PLAYS, the staged reading of THAT’S LIFE, and various other readings. Theater: Under the Radar/Public Theatre; Ensemble Studio Theatre; Queens Theater; Ars Nova; Berkshire Theatre Festival; the cell; HERE; JACK; WHAT; Theater for a New City; La MaMa E.T.C.; The Brick; Amios; FringeNYC; Trinity Rep; Providence Black Rep; Perishable Theatre; others. Film/TV: “FBI” (CBS); “Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon” (viral video with Brad
Pitt & Jimmy Fallon); Showtime’s “Brotherhood;” “Law & Order: SVU;” “Time After Time;” STARZ’ “Sweetbitter;” many films, including CHAPPAQUIDDICK; IMAGINE I’M BEAUTIFUL; CRAZY FAMOUS; BITE ME; INEZ & DOUG & KIRA. Bob is an Ensemble Artist at Ensemble Studio Theatre and Artist-in-Residence at the cell. Agents: U-Shin Kim and Chiara Licciardello at UGA Talent. He has also been playing blues harmonica since the age of 14.
Gerardo Rodriguez Select credits include: The Hombres (Two River Theater), It’s a Wonderful Life (Hartford Stage), Terra Firma (The Coop), Summer and Smoke (CSC), Neighbors: A Fair Trade Agreement (INTAR), It Can’t Happen Here (Berkeley Rep.), Se Llama Christina (INTAR), To the Bone (Cherry Lane), Seven Spots on the Sun (Cincinnati Playhouse), La Ruta (Working Th.), Lucy Loves Me (INTAR), Elemeno Pea (Humana Festival), Dramatis Personae (Playwrights Realm), Chad Deity (Mixed Blood). TV/Film: “Elementary”, “The Blacklist”, “Blue Bloods”, “Shades of Blue”, “Search Party”, “Person of Interest”,“Law & Order”, “CI” & “SVU”, Blind, Misty Button, The Artist’s Wife, Cruzando, Last Night at Angelo’s, Fish. MFA-ART/MXAT.
Neeta Thadani (she/they) is a queer Desi-American actor, activist, writer, director, comedian, podcaster, and producer for theatre and film. They have produced and directed multiple plays and musicals and have also worked as a lighting and sound designer on other productions. Recently, they directed a short film in association with the Nine Muses Production Company created by Bryce Dallas Howard.
Joseph Distl (Stage Manager) is a queer Puerto Rican theater artist from Queens. They advocate for diversity and representation for marginalized communities. Using their background in research and theatre they push to create intersectional conversations on gender, sexuality, and race. Joseph would like to open a mental health facility for queer youth to receive affordable alternative methods of therapy. Their goal is to produce unconventional theater for unconventional audiences. Recent credits include playing Grizz in ¡Oso Fabuloso & The BearBacks!(INTAR) and stage managing THIS AND THAT(Chocolate Factor & Bushwick Starr). Joseph would like to thank his partner and his sisters for always providing him with a safe space to express himself.
Nia Shuko Curd is an aspiring actress. She has been performing since the age of 7, studying various forms of art including theater, dancing and the visual arts. She went to LaGuardia high school majoring in Drama and has experienced workshopping a variety of new plays. This includes Dirt Rich, by Chisa Hutchinson and Women Like a River Falling From the Sky, by Emily Ritger, Claribel Gross and Mekala Sridhar. Outside of acting Nia enjoys singing, spending time with family, hanging out with friends and reading. She also works with middle school children teaching them visual arts. In the future Nia hopes to continue in her pursuit of theater, as well as to get the ball rolling on her career in film.
Elain Graham Ruby, in King Headly II. Mrs Dickson, Intimate Apparel, Two River Theater. Elain can currently be seen as June , Tye’s Lawyer, on Amazon Prime’s HARLEM! Other stage credits include: Intimate Apparel, Dorset Theatre Festival; Dolores, While I Yet Live, Primary Stages; The Picture Box, Negro Ensemble Company; Mum in SoHo Rep’s critically acclaimed Born Bad; The Woman in Lynn Nottage’s Banana Beer Bath, Going to the River Festival/EST; Lena Younger, A Raisin in the Sun, Virginia Stage Company; Permanent Collection, Baltimore Center Stage; Mama Benin, Playboy of the West Indies, Lincoln Center. Film/Television: The Last O.G., The Breaks, The Detour, Law & Order: SVU, Law & Order, 666 Park Avenue, Smash, Unforgettable, Across the Universe, City Teacher, Arthur!: A Celebration of Life, The Jury, Messengers, 100 Centre Street, Oz, Third Watch, Turn It Up. She was also Etta Mae Burrell on the daytime soap opera, Another World.
Tracey Conyer Lee A multidisciplinary artist in NYC, Tracey has acted in original Off-Broadway companies and across the globe. A career highlight is six productions as Billie Holiday in Lady Day At Emerson’s Bar & Grill. Forthcoming performances include development of a new musical about Marian Anderson and a regional production of Chicken & Biscuits. She recurs as Det. Claudia Ross in seasons 3-5 of FBI on CBS. She’s a proud audiobook narrator and even prouder member of the Tony awarded Broadway Inspirational Voices. She is co founder of Be Ready, a non-profit offering Black and brown students, for free, the professional presence training she teaches in corporate America. Tracey’s award winning playwriting includes selection alongside her most lauded peers, colleagues and inspirations in 25 Plays From The First This Time Festival, an anthology published by Bloomsbury Press (Methuen Drama). Tracey has also directed for The Fire This Time Festival and off-Broadway. www.traceyconyerlee.com
Candice Mckoy is a New York based actor who has worked in film, tv, and theater. She began studying her craft at Laguardia High School of Performing Arts. She received her MFA from American Conservatory Theater in San Francisco and is a lifetime member of The Actors Studio. Some of her favorite theater roles are Esther in INTIMATE APPAREL, SBF 1 in the two person comedy SINGLE BLACK FEMALE, Titania/Hippolyta in A MIDSUMMER NIGHT’S DREAM and Jessica in LOVE & MARRIAGE & NYC, for which she and her cast received an Audelco Award nomination for Best Ensemble. Candice has the luxury of range and is great with comedy and drama.
Lori Sinclair Minor is a NY based actor, playwright, singer and visual artist. She was a member of the Braata Folk Singers 2015-19. Her work includes STM- Skinfolk: An American Show, March On, Jabari Dreams Of Freedom, Boy From Troy. She feels blessed to be a part of this play
Jasai Chase-Owens is excited to be a part of The Working Theatre’s reading series developing new work and new voice. Theatre credits include: Sanctuary City(New York Theatre Workshop) , The Tempest(The Public Theatre), A Midsummer Night’s Dream(The Public Theatre), Native Son(Yale Repertory Theatre). TV credits include: The Expanse(Amazon Prime), Uncoupled(NetFlix), The Deuce(HBO).
Keivana Wallace was born in Washington D.C then moved to Maryland but her heart is in both. She will be graduating with a BFA in acting from Rutgers University’s Mason Gross School of the Arts in May. Some of her Rutgers theater credits include The Tragedy of Antony and Cleopatra as Cleopatra, Midsummer Night’s Dream as Oberon, and Men on Boats. She is thrilled to be making her acting debut! Outside of acting, Keivana is also a singer, dancer, natural hair enthusiast, “an athlete at heart”, poet, and loves being black. Her goal is to continue to spread
light in a dark world. She is a walking miracle and beyond blessed for the life she was given. If you ever need a word of encouragement she will willingly give.
Le’ianna Nicole (stage manager) is a southern black woman storyteller weaving stories through film, poetry, theatre, and photography. She seeks to intimately explore the lived experiences of Black women across the Afro-Diaspora creating havens of collective healing and empowerment. Through her work, she hopes to explore black ancestral memory, contribute to liberation movements, uncover/dismantle systems of oppression, and live
in the duality of black joy and rage, all while creating bastions of healing. Le’ianna received her Bachelor of Arts (2020) from Winthrop University where she majored in Theatre Performance and minored in Film/Content Production. Outside of the art she creates, Le’ianna is a lover of nature, a hopeless romantic for words, an admirer of all things black culture, astrology, beaches, and a chicken wing connoisseur! She seeks to actualize all the things she’s imagined and live her life as a love letter to all black women including herself.
Working Theater is supported in part by generous community members like you, and major gifts from: The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation New York Theater Program in partnership with the Alliance of Resident Theatres/New York; The Howard Gilman Foundation; The Shubert Foundation; The Axe-Houghton Foundation; The Howard Bayne Fund; The Michael Tuch Foundation; New York State Council on the Arts with the support of the Office of the Governor and the New York State Legislature; Public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council; An award from the National Endowment for the Arts.
SEASON SPONSORS: PLATINUM SPONSOR: MagnaCare.
GOLD SPONSORS: Cigna, EmblemHealth, Empire BlueCross BlueShield.
SILVER SPONSORS: CWA Local 1180, NYC Central Labor Council, Segal Consulting, United Federation of Teachers, Vision Screening Inc/DDS Inc