Theater Festival 2001





IAAC and Lark Festival: Indian Plays in the Diaspora

The Indian Plays in the Diaspora reading series is a joint project of the IAAC and the Lark Theatre Company. While this reading series is a new project for both organizations, it is modeled after The Lark's Annual Playwrights Week. Established in 1994, The Lark is an incubator for a diverse community of emerging American and international playwrights.

The Lark provides new voices with the creative support necessary for cultivating their craft by uniting playwrights with creative teams comprised of directors, actors, dramaturges and audiences to focus on the evolution of the dramatic text and the playwright's unique vision. The Lark achieves this mission through six basic programming initiatives: o BareBones8" is a time and labor intensive play development process applied to 6 plays per season.

Each of the six playwrights chosen for this series is assigned a creative team composed of a director, dramaturge, and actors, with whom he or she participates in approximately 125 hours of rehearsal over five weeks to elucidate the vision and structural integrity of the script

Diagnostic Sessions, Table Readings and Studio Retreats are all condensed versions of the BareBones process. Diagnostic Sessions and Table Readings bring the playwright, a director, actors, and members of The Lark's Literary Wing (which reads and evaluates 1000 new plays per year!) around a table to read the play out loud. In a Diagnostic Session, the table can be "virtual" via a conference call. A Studio Retreat provides the playwright and his or her creative team with 29 hours of concentrated rehearsal and development time that culminates in one or more public presentations. The Lark Theatre Company hosts approximately 100 Diagnostic Sessions and Table Readings and 15 Studio Retreats per season.

The Annual Playwrights Week identifies eight playwrights new to The Lark and provides each with 10 hours of concentrated rehearsal and a two-hour public presentation of their work. The International Program identifies talented playwrights in other countries and facilitates the translation and/or adaptation of their work for American audiences.

Our work with international playwrights establishes connections to international and ethnic communities in New York City. Playwrlting As Literacy In Action, the Lark's education program, places playwrights in New York City public schools to develop, with educators, an exciting curriculum that encourages high school students to develop their dramatic voices. The Playwrights* Workshop, facilitated by esteemed playwright Arthur Kopit, serves early-career playwrights by providing them with an opportunity to explore scenes from works-in-progress with professional actors.

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