Monday Night Reading Series

Monday 5/17/2021 7pm EST / 4pm PST

The Last Crankie

Written by: P H Lin

THE LAST CRANKIE is not a play about someone having a bad day. Rather it’s a cautionary tale, told through a 19th century storytelling device known as a Crankie.

This wicked-smart fun, funny romp imagines a post-apocalyptic society in which creativity isn’t valued and the very act of “imagining” is endangered.

In a magical journey the girls meet Nana, her family, and the Angel sent to help save Nana’s Great Books collection. But time is short. If the Agency that’s tracking her overtake Nana, her books will be seized and destroyed.

THE LAST CRANKIE forces us to consider the value of a liberal arts education in a future world where STEM has dominated the curriculum for more than a century. What values do we really want to pass on to future generations?


Readings begin promptly at 7pm EST / 4pm PST

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Monday 4/26/2021 


Written by: John Thorburn Hall
Directed & Developed by: David Lamberton

DASH, a new play by John Thorburn Hall, directed and developed by David Lamberton, is based on actual events in 1976 war-torn Nigeria, when an African-American government envoy arrives on a US trade mission, as well as a personal mission to explore his racial identity. After witnessing the murder of an innocent hotel worker by a fellow American, he is forced into a crisis of conscience.


Monday 4/5/2021 

By: Joel Krantz

Directed by: Michelle Batt

Called “The Miracle of the Pandemic,” and back on CreateTheater again by audience request, OCEAN IN A TEACUP, a new musical in development by Joel Krantz, is a musical drama based on the true story of a broken American, Red Cross medic Ray Hauserman, who gets a second chance at life in war torn India in 1946. Running time is 2 hours and 10 minutes, with talkback following.

If you haven’t seen OCEAN IN A TEACUP, treat yourself to this experience on YouTube.


Monday 3/15/2021 

By Chris Sherman
Directed by: Michelle Batt

Chris’s new comedy LIFE ALERT is being co-produced by eMBer Women’s Theater of Columbus, OH. Watch the premiere here on YouTube 3/15 at 7pm. I’m proud to help raise donations for this excellent women’s theater.

Annie Sussman and her husband, Ben are two happily married empty nesters living on Manhattan’s Upper West Side. Annie, a retired teacher, has big plans to restart the playwriting career she left behind so many years ago. And she’s actually starting to get somewhere, when her mother, Rose, has a sudden fall and must come and live with them.

This is a very funny new play, with a running time of approximately 90 minutes. I personally think that Chris Sherman is the 21st century Erma Bombeck!


Monday 3/8/2021 

By Donna Hoke

Synopsis: When frenemy nail techs Cha-Cha and Katie are privileged to hear a favorite customer’s bizarre dying wish, they set off to make it come true–and learn that success is relative but friendship doesn’t have to be.

This is a wonderful new play, with a running time of approximately 90 minutes.


Monday 3/1/2021 7pm EST / 4pm PST

By Vynnie Meli
Directed by Melissa Foulger, with Lauren BoydScott and Eric Mendenhall

ORBITAL DEBRIS is a bittersweet romantic comedy about the risk taken when two random, fast-moving forces circling Earth accidentally collide. Scott is an Aerospace Engineering grad student at Georgia Tech working to prevent asteroids from crashing into the planet. Claire sells jams she makes from the mayhaw berries she skims off a low country swamp. Scott closes himself off from relationships; Claire sabotages her own. Every Sunday they are both at the same flea market, but their meeting one Saturday night is entirely random. Opposites attract, but so does gravity. An unseen presence hovers over Claire while she and Scott linger at the line between connection and collision.

Monday 2/22/2021 7pm EST / 4pm PST

by Rodney Hicks
Directed by: Demone Seraphin

Produced by Rhymes Over Beats Theater Collective

A 2019 Eugene O’Neill Playwriting Conference Semi-Finalist, MS. PEARL’S CABARET is based on Hick’s own coming of age told through the eyes of a Black Drag Kween named Ms. Pearl. Jamal and Louis are brother’s growing up in the 1980’s. Children of divorced parents, their young father is raising them and himself the best he can while their misguided mother spins. Ms. Pearl’s Cabaret is a story of survival, finding your You to live your best life despite the original cards that were dealt. The reading features Jennifer Fouche, T. Oliver Reid, and J. Cameron Barnett as Ms. Pearl.

Monday 2/15/2021
On TheThird Day

By Amina S. McIntyre
Directed by Mia Kristin Smith

ON THE THIRD DAY follows the The Lansing family, especially the second son, Omar, who experienced a great loss when Nathaniel, Jr. was killed over 3 years ago. The family has tried to move on without much success, scattering them physically and emotionally. When the trial is nearly over and they are asked to make a recommendation on the death penalty, Omar comes home and the Lansings must come together to agree upon a decision.

Monday 2/8/2021
Swimming Uptown

By Cheryl L. Davis
Produced by Rhymes Over Beats

Swimming Uptown is the story of an affluent and educated African-American woman who must take in her ghetto-raised niece when her sister is imprisoned.

February 1, 2021 & April 5, 2021

Book by Joel Krantz

Music & Lyrics by Joel Krantz & Neil Selden

Into the most divided country in human history, India in the 1940’s, comes a disillusioned American idealist.  Based on the true story of Ray Hauserman, a conscientious objector during World War 2 who becomes a medic for the Red Cross in the jungle war in Burma. When Ray betrays his vow “never to kill” he meets an Indian doctor and spiritual guide who offers him a path to redemption by taking care of the sick and hungry during the Moslem/Hindu riots that started the partition of India.  Will he leave behind everything (and everyone) he knows and loves to follow him?

“Ocean in a Teacup” is a love story, a war story, and a “spiritual quest” musical.

September 21, 2020

LADY CAPULET: What Caused the Feud? A Prequel to Romeo & Juliet

LADY CAPULET written by Melissa Bell

A prequel to Romeo & Juliet, Inspired by William Shakespeare

Synopsis: What caused the feud between the Montagues and the Capulets? This prequel to Romeo and Juliet follows the journey of Rose from country girl to matriarch, navigating her repression and power in 16th Century Verona.

Directed by Emily Gallagher

“Melissa Bell reimagines the life of Juliet’s mother in the years before the events of Romeo & Juliet in this classical prequel.” –Time Out NY


ROSE, Lady Capulet – Jianzi Colón-Soto

Montague – Preston Fox

Capulet – Andrew Dunn

Nurse – Marlena Holman

Lucio – Jefferson Reardon

Stage Directions – Heather Sawyer


BAD DAUGHTER an award-winning new comedy by Julie Weinberg, Directed by Shelley Butler


When Maddie’s father falls ill, she has to leave her secret life in Paris to return to the old family drama in New Jersey. But this is a comedy. If her family gets their way, it’s babka instead of baguettes forever. And that would be a tragedy.

BAD DAUGHTER, winner of the Kennedy Center’s Mark Twain Prize for Comic Playwriting, is a fast-paced romp to keep you laughing through dark times. Think Neil Simon meets Wendy Wasserstein on a lousy day in New Jersey.

The reading features three time Tony Award nominee Mary Testa, Tony Award Winner Frank Wood, Maria-Christina Oliveras, Lindsay Brill, RJ Vaillancourt and Kelechi Ezie. Stage directions will be read by Mac Stevenson. Brianna Rafidi will serve as production stage manager.

A talkback will follow the reading.


2 Anxious Bisexuals

 Written by Dianne Gebauer, Marie Incontrera, and Megan A. Zebrowski

Directed by Megan A. Zebrowski

Dianne and Marie, two 30-something aspiring comedians, are tricked into a blind date. Invite anxiety to the table! Will it be love at first sight, a debacle to forget, or will friendship take them “bi” surprise?

With Casie Girvin, Cat Greenfield, Adam B. Shapiro (Fiddler on the Roof in Yiddish, The Normal Heart), HJ Farr, AJ Lockhart, Diana Easter, Nikita Chaudhry, Megan A. Zebrowski, Sean Thompson, Rachel Beck, Sammie James, Ann Kreitman, Naomi Jichita and Merrie L. Davis present BIRD AT THE WINDOW by Barbara Kelly 


In BIRD AT THE WINDOW, on the anniversary of a tragic event, a long-separated couple and their new mates are forced to spend the night together in a cottage as a major storm approaches.

But the prickly foursome soon discovers… some storms you cannot outride.

by Barbara Kelly

Directed by Steve Marsh

With Catherine Zambri *, Ian Whitt*, Rob Gallagher*, Daniele Pafundi

(*Member AEA)

MADAME CURE, a new musical

Book & score by David Kurkowski

Directed by Cate Cammarata

Dean Schneider, Musical Director

Madame Curie tells the remarkable story of the famous scientist.  We first see young Maria in occupied Warsaw as a young child with a natural curiosity about the world, and then follow her to Paris, where she meets her future husband Pierre and conducts the ground-breaking research that earns her two Nobel Prizes.  Hers was a remarkable life, filled with crushing tragedies as well as soaring triumphs.  This musical will forever change how you look on Madame Curie.


A group of shipwrecked barge workers attempts to set up a government on their new island home, a task complicated by the fact that they have also been getting high on the barge’s petroleum cargo. When issues such as racism, civil liberties, and religious freedom arise, sides are eventually taken and an election is held to determine the new “captain” of the island.


sponsored by the Simons Center of Geometry and Physics and the C. N. Yang Institute for Theoretical Physics, announces a reading of the three winners of their 10 minute play competition.

Directed by Steve Marsh, Literary Manager of the Science Playwriting Competition.

3rd Place ALL YOU EVER WANTED by Alec Toller.

Light is shed on what it means to be in a PAIR (Personal Artificial Intelligence Relationship). Artificial intelligence and genuine human emotions engage causing us to wonder whether the value of a A.I. relationship is any less than a real, carbonist relationship.

2nd Place INDETERMINATE by Joshua H. Cohen

A young theoretical physicist takes fate into her own hands as she attempts to test the potentially apocalyptic Black Hole theories of her mentor.

1st Place WITH FELLOWSHIP by Amanda Keating

A forensic dental scientist is obsessed with trying to figure out why the teeth of a certain sampling of 10th Century, German nuns are dyed blue. Could her discoveries reveal that women were much more involved in the creation of ancient religious texts than originally thought?

THE DESCENT TO DALI by Jack Feldstein

Genius or lunatic? Or paradoxically both? In Spain, the final years of decline and ultimate descent of the eccentric and brilliant artist Salvador Dali into madness were decadently intertwined with his wife, Gala. In THE DESCENT TO DALI, based on real life events, we learn the strange and surrealistic happenings of this powerhouse art/star couple, Gala and Dali, until their controversial deaths in 1982 and 1989, respectivel

A TOMATO CAN’T GROW IN THE BRONX is a dramedy about a 1960s Bronx blue-collar family overcoming emotional warfare as they try to fulfill their dream of an idyllic suburban home where tomatoes can grow.

Written by Gary Morgenstein

Directed by Joan Kane


INSTIMACY by Manuel Igrejas

Monty and Luis have had a happy romantic partnership for ten years. A chance encounter with Stefan, a sexy, mysterious waiter, disrupts their cozy lives: both Monty and Luis have a secret connection to him. Monty comes from a happy Italian family; Luis was raised over a topless bar by his grandmother. Stefan has trouble pinning down exactly where he came from, though parts of his past are on display all over the internet. The three men’s lives intertwine in a number of surprising, romantic, and potentially devastating ways that challenge their beliefs, integrity and their identities as gay men in an increasingly homogenous culture.



WAR ORPHAN BY Shellen Lubin

A friendship between a lost young gay man and a lost straight young woman develops during the early years of the AIDS epidemic, The running time is approximately 70-75 minutes, with a talkback following.


LIFE ALERT  a new comedy by Chris Sherman

Annie Sussman and her husband, Ben, are two happily married empty nesters living on Manhattan’s Upper West Side. Annie has big plans to restart the playwriting career she left behind so many years ago. But when her mother, Rose, has a fall and must come live with them, a decision must be made. Mama, or me?


BORDELLO  a new musical

Music by Emiliano Messiez, book & lyrics by Barbara Bellman