In recent years, I have noticed just how much the music that I listen to has been influencing my work as a playwright. From the way my characters talk, to how music is integrated into the plays, and so on. Last year, I began to think about how a piece of music can more greatly inform the creation of a new work, and how works of art speak to one another. And I wanted to bring other artists, in this case playwrights, who thought about music like I do, who are inspired by music like I am, into the process to provide a variety of perspectives… And thus “The Album Plays” were born. -Beto O’Byrne, playwright
The Album Plays are a commission-based project where a series of new plays will be developed inspired by full-length albums of music. Artists develop the plays in ways that reflect the spirit, musicality, and other reference points to the original work, using their specific voices to view an existing piece of art in a new light. Each writer works with an album as the inspiration point, with each track of the album working to inspire scenes, moments, story, characters, etc of the play.
Currently three playwrights have been commissioned and are in the process of writing the first drafts of their plays. Check back in to follow their development!
In addition, to the full-length plays, each writer is given a song, or single mp3 to write a short, five minute play that responds the music. We are in the process of developing these short plays and producing them via podcast as radio plays. The first one will be out in Fall 2015.
Megan Breen (Los Angeles, CA)
Megan Breen received her BFA in Dramaturgy at The Theatre School at DePaul University in Chicago and her MFA in Dramatic Writing at USC’s School of Dramatic Arts in Los Angeles. Her work in L.A. has been directed by O-Lan Jones and Juliette Carrillo, and her USC thesis play My First, My Fist, My Bleeding Seeded Spirit, a contemporary sequel to Lorca’s The House of Bernarda Alba, was part of the 2010 MFA Playwrights’ Workshop at the Kennedy Center and the National New Play Network’s Showcase of New Plays before receiving its world premiere at Miami’s New Theatre in November of 2013. Her Cain and Abel story set to the Blues - The Dirt and Its Harp in Her Mouth - was produced at OC Centric’s 2012 New Play Festival, and made the OC Examiner’s Best New Plays of Orange County list. Her sexy desert noir Serpentine Pink, was produced as a part of L.A.’s Son of Semele’s Company Creation Festival, and was a finalist for Washington D.C.’s 2015 Source Festival.
Beto O’Byrne (Brooklyn, NY)
Beto O’Byrne hails from East Texas and is the co-founder of Radical Evolution. As a theatre artist, his plays have been produced and supported throughout the U.S. He is the former Artistic Director of the Austin Latino Theater Alliance and is an alumnus of INTAR’s Maria Irene Fornes Hispanic Playwrights in Residence Lab, the Texas Black and Latino Playwriting Festival, Lincoln Center Theater’s Director’s Lab, and was twice the recipient of residences at the Tofte Lake Arts Center in Ely, MN. He is an Artistic and International Programs Associate for Theatre Communications Group as well as a steering committee member of the Latino/a Theatre Commons.
Joe Luis Cedillo (San Juan Bautista, CA)
Joe Luis Cedillo is a left-handed, Chicano Playwright-Director-Dramaturg & Sound Designer. Graduate of Iowa’s Playwright’s Workshop & Cal State Northridge’s Playwright’s Workshop. Former Literary Manager/Production Dramaturg for the Alley Theatre, interned for Center Theatre Group, created/produced work for the Edge of the World Theatre festival, Minneapolis & Hollywood Fringe, LA History Project, Highways Performance Space, and venues across the country.