Writing Is Rewriting

In the final weeks of the playwriting workshops I teach, after I've helped students see their new plays to completion, I often mention how it would be really great to have a rewriting class. That's when the students descend on me like rabid animals and demand that I do it. Well, after several years of big talk, playwrights in the Los Angeles area will have the opportunity to take "Writing Is Rewriting," a rewriting intensive that I have limited to six—yes, just six!—students, at the East West Players' David Henry Hwang Writers Institute, starting in September. The deets? Here:

So you've written a play—now what do you do? You rewrite it, of course! Most playwrights know that the real work on a play begins after you finish the first draft. The rewriting phase is a crucial time in which characters are refined, structure is solidified, and themes are clarified. It is also the time when playwrights really dig deep into the work, honing in on every detail—scene by scene, character by character, line by line.

During the course of 13 weeks, the instructor will present lessons on different aspects of rewriting, and each playwright will have two class sessions dedicated to workshopping two different drafts of his or her play. Directed feedback sessions, tightly monitored by the instructor, will help playwrights realize their own unique vision and voice, rather than some arbitrary idea of what a play is supposed to be. Equally important is participating in each other's feedback sessions, as all the playwrights will find common ground in the issues that concern them during the rewriting phase, and the strength of a community of playwrights will help bring all the projects to completion.

The workshop will culminate in staged readings by professional actors and directors, and enrollment will be limited to 6 writers. PLEASE DO NOT APPLY UNLESS you have a completed draft of a full-length play and can commit to attending all 13 sessions of the workshop. Applicants should also note that the application process isn’t necessarily an evaluation of their work, but rather of this particular instructor’s ability to improve it.

September 4, 2007 – November 27, 2007
Days & Times: Tuesdays from 7:00 PM – 10:00PM
Staged Readings: December 17-20, 2007
Maryknoll Japanese Catholic Center
222 S. Hewitt St., Los Angeles, CA 90012
Fee: $450 (ACTS members $425)

Get the application right here. It's due by July 20, 2007, and class begins September 4, 2007.

—Reporting From Glendale, California

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