2019 LAUNCH PAD Summer Reading Series

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Thursday, August 08, 2019 2:30 PM

For one week each, beginning on August 9, three professional playwrights-in-residence will develop their new works in active collaboration with some of Santa Barbara’s favorite actors and a cadre of talented UC Santa Barbara students as part of LAUNCH PAD’s 6th annual Summer Reading Series.

“The entire process happens over four days. We read the first draft of the play aloud on Tuesday afternoon and, by Friday evening, we are performing a reading of a completely new piece of theater in front of our first audience,” says Risa Brainin, LAUNCH PAD’s founder and Artistic Director. “From the first minute to the last, the play is in constant evolution,” says Brainin. “The script is being revised and rewritten: characters are deepening, new scenes are added, lines are cut, even a new character may appear before the week is out...it’s a whirlwind!”

This summer’s line-up includes Arlene Hutton’s Three Sisters Brontë, Enid Graham’s What Martha Did, and Mia Chung’s Untitled Measurement Play and features guest artists Jason Bowe, Brian Harwell, Julie Fishell, and Joe Spano.

Under the direction of Brainin, this fast-paced, innovative program provides the experiential ground for professionals and students alike to participate in the creative process as it’s happening. In addition to acting, students explore stage management and dramaturgy as well as lighting, costume, sound, and scenic design, offering ideas to the playwright as the script develops.

“Although the pace is fast, there is room for everyone,” says Brainin. “Every voice is valued.”

Creating the Next Great American Play is the claim made on LAUNCH PAD’s masthead. While that might seem like a tall order, Brainin doesn’t think so. “Every new play has that potential,” says Brainin. “Inside the LAUNCH PAD incubator, we aim to give each playwright and play the opportunity to thrive!”

The LAUNCH PAD 2019 Summer Reading Series presents three staged readings, free to the public, on three consecutive Fridays: August 9, August 16, and August 23 in the Studio Theater at UC Santa Barbara. A reception to meet the playwright will be held at 7:00 pm immediately followed by the reading at 7:30 pm. No RSVP is required and admission is free.

For more information about this summer’s visiting playwrights, please ​click here.

For more information about the LAUNCH PAD Summer Reading Series, please ​click here