Artemisia FALL FESTIVAL 2018 Preview

Fall Festival Playwrights from Top left to right: Charly Evon Simpson, J. Thalia, Cunningham, Anthony Fiorentino. Bottom left to right: Callie Kimball, Carolyn Kras, and Lauren Ferebee.


Artemisia launches its 2018-19 Theatre Season with six all-new feminist plays featured in its Fall Festival 2018. This year’s playwrights were chosen after a dedicated search by Artemisia’s Artistic Staff.  Each play is staged only once by Chicago actors. From this lineup, one play will be chosen by Artistic Director, Julie Proudfoot, whose dedicated development process with the playwright will be shared directly with Artemisia’s audience and lead to the play’s premiere production in Chicago. This year’s festival follows diverse and fascinating female characters, all on a journey of empowerment.

Special events at the festival include audience discussions and a closing night party and all performances.

Charly Evon Simpson


Charly Evon Simpson is a playwright and performer from New York City. Her plays include Jump, Scratching the Surface, Hottentotted, While We Wait, and more. Her work has been seen and/or developed with NNPN at its Kennedy Center MFA Playwright's Workshop, Ensemble Studio Theatre, Ars Nova, The Flea, and others. She's a member of 17/18 Clubbed Thumb Early Career Writers' Group, The Amoralists' 2018-19 'Wright Club, and is The Pack's current playwright-in-residence. Charly holds a Bachelor of Arts from Brown and Master of Fine Arts from Hunter College.

Simpson says“I was so excited to hear that Scratching the Surface would be included in Artemisia's Fall Festival. I can't wait to share this play with a new audience in Chicago and for the opportunity to possibly work with Artemisia on the development of this piece!”

J. Thalia Cunningham


Thalia Cunningham is a playwright, travel writer, and photographer. Her plays have been commissioned, produced, and developed in United States and internationally. She has been published by Smith & Kraus and Applause. She is a proud member of: Actors Studio; League of Professional Theatre Women; The WorkShop Theater Company. J. Thalia holds a Bachelor of Arts from Johns Hopkins University has traveled to 120 countries, and has written for national travel publications.

Cunningham says, “I am honored that Witch Camp was selected as one of the plays for Artemisia Theatre's Fall Festival. At this particular moment in our history, when both women's issues and racial issues have moved to the forefront of American social consciousness, I am grateful that Artemisia Theatre champions the vehicle of theatre as a means of engaging and encouraging us to explore these matters.”

Anthony Fiorentino


Anthony Fiorentino is a Chicago-based playwright whose plays have been produced at the Athenaeum Theatre, Stage 773, Prop Theatre, the American Theatre of Actors, the Actors' Theatre of Santa Cruz, and the Attic Playhouse. His plays “All My Love” and “The Feast” have been nominated for the Jeff Award for Best New Play. He is an affiliated artist with the National New Play Network. He was a finalist for the Stanley Drama Award in 2011, and a Semi-finalist for Eugene O'Neill Theatre Center National Playwright's Conference (2008).

Fiorentino says, "I am delighted and honored to have my play presented as part of Artemisia's 2018 Fall Festival.  I have wanted to work with Artemisia since I first attended its fall festival as an audience member, and am thrilled for the opportunity to be a part of its important mission of using the power of drama to empower women."

Callie Kimball


Callie Kimball is a MacDowell Fellow, a two-time winner of the Rita & Burton Goldberg Award, a finalist for the O'Neill, a semifinalist for the Princess Grace Award, and a four-time nominee for the Susan Smith Blackburn Award. Her plays have appeared in NY, Chicago, LA, and DC, at the Kennedy Center, Portland Stage Company, Lark Play Development Center, Dramatic Repertory Company, Halcyon Theatre, Stoneham Theatre, Echo Theatre, The Brick Theater, Project Y Theatre, Team Awesome Robot, Washington Shakespeare Company, Mad Horse Theatre, and more. She is currently writing a commission for ShadowCatcher Productions inspired by the letters of her grandparents during World War II. Things That Are Round will have its world premiere this November at Rep Stage. Plays include: Sofonisba (Clauder Gold Prize Winner, Kilroys' List), Rush, Alligator Road, Dreams of the Penny Gods.

Kimball says, "I'm thrilled to have my play 'Things That Are Round' chosen for this year's festival. The play departs in style and tone from last year's 'Rush,' yet it dovetails neatly with Artemisia's mission. I am so thankful to Julie and everyone at Artemisia for the work they do in highlighting plays that don't hew to traditional storytelling narratives. Their mission and work are breaking down stereotypes and offering audiences unique and original voices."

Carolyn Kras


Carolyn Kras is an LA-based playwright from Chicago.  She was Playwright in Residence at Selladoor Worldwide through the support of the Fulbright LUSK Award to the United Kingdom.  Her play The Subject has had 20 readings, including a United Nations Orange Day Reading in London. Carolyn is the recipient of the Visionary Playwright Award, Hamptons International Film Festival Screenwriters' Lab selection, Alfred P. Sloan Screenwriting Award, Aspen Ideas Festival Scholar selection, Disquiet International Short Play Award, and Plume & Pellicule Award.   Her plays have been developed and or produced at The Blank Theatre, The Road Theatre, Chicago Dramatists, Stage Left Theatre, Centenary Stage Company, Pittsburgh Irish & Classical Theatre, 20% Theatre Company Chicago, Williams Street Rep, Theater Masters, Found Stages, and the Edinburgh Festival Fringe.  She is a member of The Playwrights Union LA and holds a Masters of Fine Arts from Carnegie Mellon University.

Kras says, "I love Artemisia Theatre's mission to support stories with women at the center and feel honored to bring Mine & Yours to the Fall Festival.  Mine & Yours is a play close to my heart, and I'm delighted to share this Chicago story with Chicago audiences."

Lauren Ferebee


Lauren's plays have been praised as "exquisite" (Applause, Applause) and "a fine balance between laugh-out-loud absurdity and gut-wrenching human drama" (DC Metro Theater Arts). Her play The Meeting was recently a national finalist for the Kennedy Center's Gary Garrison 10-Minute Play Award. Previous plays include The Reckless Season (finalist, 2016 Princess Grace Award, semi-finalist, 2014 Shakespeare's Sister Fellowship), and Sexual Geography (finalist, 2015 Reva Shiner Comedy Award). Smith & Kraus will publish four monologues from The Reckless Season in the 2018 Best Stage Monologues series.  She was a nominee for the 2016 USA Fellowship in theatre. She holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts from NYU/Tisch.

Ferebee says It means so much to me to be working with a theatre that privileges the complex and intricate narratives of women's lives. It is especially meaningful for this play, which looks at different generations of women and what strength has meant to them. I am proud to be working with a theatre whose namesake was one of the greatest women artists of all time, a theatre whose work carries her legacy into our shared future.” 


Artemisia is dedicated to the development and production of new feminist plays.  The theater’s goal is to give playwrights career-altering opportunities andengage the audience directly in the development of groundbreaking feminist theatre that culminates in a one-of-a-kind production in Chicago.


Monday, September 24th - SCRATCHING THE SURFACE, by Charly Evon Simpson
Tuesday, September 25th - WITCH CAMP, by J. Thalia Cunningham
Wednesday, September 26th - CASH COWS,by Anthony Fiorentino
Monday, October 1st - THINGS THAT ARE ROUND, by Callie Kimball
Tuesday, October 2nd - MINE & YOURS,by Carolyn Kras
Wednesday, October 3rd - EVERY WAITING HEART, by Lauren Ferebee


The Edge Theatre
5451 North Broadway



For ticket information go to Artemisia's Website.

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