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Event Details
  • Writer-Producer Speed Date (do not purchase until accepted)
    October 16, 2022
    2:00 pm - 7:15 pm
Details Price Qty
TRU member $75.00 (USD)   Goes On Sale
October 8, 2022
Non-member $85.00 (USD)   Goes On Sale
October 8, 2022
Addt'l collaborator $25.00 (USD)   Goes On Sale
October 8, 2022
Non-participating observer (coaching & pitching) $75.00 (USD)   Goes On Sale
October 8, 2022
Writer-Producer Virtual Speed Date 10-16-22

We're Zooming ahead into the Virtual World - Speed Date has been reformatted for Zoom! More tech, less noise – each writer will be in an individual breakout room with each of our 11+ producers. 

Sunday 10/16, 2022 - submission deadline 10/06
Session 1: coaching at 2:00, pitching at 4:00 ET (there will be an hour wait time between coaching and pitching)
Session 2: coaching at 3:00, pitching at 5:30 ET (there will be a 90 minute wait time between coaching and pitching)

You meet a producer at a party, and have two minutes to interest him in your work. Do you have the skill to sell yourself? Here's a chance to practice your pitching with real producers who are open to and interested in meeting you. Okay, they probably won't option you on the spot, but they'll give you valuable feedback about your work and your ability to talk about it. And you'll have the opportunity to start developing a relationship. And that's what this business is all about. Relationships.

The Speed Date is the only event I know of that gives writers the chance to meet high level producers one-on-one in a room. To me, that's what makes the Speed-Dates so valuable. And you do it with kindness, which I value in life. ~Vincent Amelio (How Alfo Learned to Love)

Click here: WriterSpeedDateApp-85-75virtual-rev2 for application. Please fill out and email to TRUStaff1@gmail.com (PLEASE - add your name to the document name, and put it first when you "save as").

We'll have eleven producers lined up, from both the commercial and not-for-profit worlds, all with an interest in new projects; we also may have eleven aspiring producers from our Producer Development program. So you'll be pitching to as many as 22 producers in total! Come with a willingness to learn, because the real value is the chance to practice your pitching. And you'll be getting invaluable coaching from experts, as well.

Confirmed producers include:

  • Margot Astrachan, producer (Diana, The Prom, A Gentleman's Guide..., Ghost the musical, Around the World in 80 Days, Nice Work If You Can Get It, On a Clear Day...);
  • Patrick Blake, producer (The Exonerated, In The Continuum, The 39 Steps revival, Play Dead, Bedlam Theater's Hamlet/St. Joan, The Assignment, The Soap Myth), founding artistic director of Rhymes Over Beats Hip Hop Theater Collective;
  • Merrie L. Davis, producer (5 TONY awards for Company broadway, 4 Olivier awards for Company London, 6 Tony Nominations for Eclipsed, Gigi; Museum of Broadway opening November 15th in Times Square, Himself and Nora; upcoming Working Girl);
  • Sharon Fallon/Sharon Fallon Productions, executive producer, general manager and consultant (IndecentBeautiful Broadway, London & National Tour, Matilda The Musical, Lysistrata Jones);
  • Neil Gooding, producer (Australia: 33 Variations, Sweet Charity, Drummer Queens, The Bridges Of Madison CountyGutenberg! The Musical!, Dogfight; New York: Church and StateHandle with CareThe 39 Steps, Alan Cumming’s one-man Macbeth on Broadway; upcoming productions: Back to the Future in London, What’s New Pussycat in the UK and Harmony in New York);
  • Markus Potter, theatre director, Artistic Director of Kansas Repertory Theatre, Founding Producing Artistic Director of NewYorkRep, Co-Producer of the Velocity of Autumn on Broadway);
  • Tamra Pica, producer and casting director for Write Act Repertory. - "My work centers on developing writers in theater, film and television.  Though I tend to produce more musicals, I am interested in writers in all genres with a strong voice who write the stories they are uniquely meant to tell.";
  • Blair Russell, producer (Tony nominated Slave Play, Lizard Boy, concept recording For Tonight, plus fringe festivals), new play developer - "I look for work from writers who have knowledge, experience, and talent and who care about continually improving their craft. I find myself drawn to traditional stories told in new and unique ways, and new, unique stories told in traditional ways. All of these things are true,  and none of them are final, good work should be persuasive and inevitable.";
  • Kim Vasquez/Gray Lady Entertainment (Be More Chill London, Chicago, On/Off Broadway, Broadway Bounty Hunter, Church and State; Founding Producer New York Musical Festival, Producing Director Park Square Theatre Mainstage/Saint Paul);
  • Ric Wanetik, producer (Tony nominated Twilight Los Angeles: 1992, Broadway’s Marlene, Off-Broadway’s Jolson and Company) and senior advisor for America to the Royal Shakespeare Company (RSC), board member of Island City Stage in Wilton Manors FL;
  • Aly York, indie producer, LA and Philadelphia area.

Coaches: Diana Calderazzo, Emileena Pedigo, Bailie Slevin

Observing Producers: Kimberly Clouse*, Maureen Condon*, Amy Drake*, Don Loftus*, Christopher Michaels*, Max Needle*, Stephanie Pope Lofgren*, David Stamps*, Robert Stachel*, Tracy Swedlow*

[*members and alumni of TRU's Producer Development program]


At TRU they not only provide you with the opportunity to meet 11 different producers, but they also provide you with tools and coaching to make your pitch night a success. They also bring producers that love the educational aspect of the pitch night and genuinely love meeting new writers. So, even if you don’t walk away with an option, which they tell you not to expect, you walk away with a better pitch, new ideas, and a bigger network. ~Kenady Sean, musicalwriters.com 

I really am impressed with the info and support from TRU. I've done several of these with [another] group. I quit last year. With you guys it's like you're setting us up for success, what a concept. ~Kurt Johns (Hello Kitty Must Die)

I just wanted to relay a huge thanks to you and everyone at TRU for this experience, it was awesome! We really felt supported the whole way through, and we feel so much better prepared to market our show after getting the chance to practice pitching. If there's anywhere we can write a review or something for this experience, please let us know. And thank you and the rest of the team for all the tech effort behind this. ~Daniel Rosen & Alara Magritte (Safe Hands)

Just wanted to say “thanks” for your Herculean efforts in making the event so worthwhile.... Honestly, I much preferred pitching via Zoom than in person with everyone else within earshot. ~Sam Affoumado (Panic Defense)

I participated in TRU's Writer's Speed Date Pitch session last year, and got a LOT out of it! I found it so motivating to have a deadline to create production assets and prepare myself for meeting producers. My partner and I worked tirelessly for days before the event to make sure we were in top form before presenting (as writers) to the "producers" on hand. My experience was one of the rare occasions where several producers expressed real interest in my work. Later, one attended my reading, and followed up with a coffee meeting to talk financing. We're still in touch. Again, this is never promised, but it does happen for some of us. In my opinion, the price of $85 for all that value is a BARGAIN! ~Ed Zareh (Long Lost John)

I've had follow-up meetings with two people I met from the event. and provided scripts to three others. I also met some fellow playwrights, and through a chain of introductions coming out of that, I'm now working on a possible film deal in Los Angeles.  If you have a project where you'd like to practice and receive feedback on your pitch; potentially make some connections that would be useful for script development or early production; and meet some other playwrights – this is an ideal opportunity. ~William Roetzheim

Faculty
  • DIANA CALDERAZZO

    is an adjunct instructor of Theatre at Fordham University, teaching Invitation to Theatre. She earned a PhD in Theatre with a focus in Cognitive Studies from the University of Pittsburgh in 2012 and a Master’s Degree in Theatre from the University of Central Florida in 2005. She has taught Theatre and/or Communications at both of those universities, as well as Central Texas College and Bronx Community College. Diana was also a scholarship recipient at Smith College, where she completed her Bachelor’s Degree in Theatre. Diana has published peer-reviewed articles in such journals as Theatre Topics and Theatre Symposium, and has presented papers at national and international conferences such as the American Society for Theatre Research and the International Federation for Theatre Research. She is also a member of Wardrobe Local 764 in New York City, where she works as a wardrobe technician for various Broadway shows. She worked as a full-time dresser for Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark on Broadway from 2010 to 2013. Diana is a former Tour Actor/Director for the Missoula Children’s Theatre and has taught Theatre to over 2,500 children around the country with this company. She has also toured in Europe as a performer with Music Theatre Bavaria.
  • EMILEENA PEDIGO

    Emileena's work focuses on building sustainable careers #AnotherWay, using entrepreneurial strategies that prioritize the artist over their art.  Her company, The Show Goes On Productions provides coaching and artist management, as well as produces workshops, showcases, and events.  Before that Emileena was managing producer of the Midtown International Theater Festival.  She helped expand the annual festival into seven venues, presenting up to 60 shows in one month during her seven-year tenure.  Emileena also general-managed for several nonprofits, assisted Stewart F. Lane on four Broadway shows, including the Off-Broadway transfer of The 39 Steps, and worked on various film and music festivals.  She toured theaters, music arenas, and schools across the country, working with artists from all artistic disciplines.  Emileena has served on the board of Conscious Capitalism NYC, and helped to build Arts programming within the Chelsea Greenwich Village Chelsea Chamber of Commerce.  She is a graduate of the Commercial Theatre Institute, SUNY/Kaufmann's Fasttrac program for entrepreneurs, and a Purdue University alum. 

  • BAILIE SLEVIN

    is the founder of Financial Wellness Companion and Entertaining Finance. With 15 years of experience in the personal financial planning industry, Bailie developed a niche in the arts and freelance communities, specializing in working with people with an uneven income. She has also made a study of language and how people communicate about their art, be it screenwriting, playwriting, sculpting, performing, or painting. Bailie helps to translate the creator’s passion about their work and contributions to the world to others in a business setting. Bailie has also spent significant time in the theatre industry as a stage manager, general manager, and producer. She is a Life Purpose Life Coach and a New York Mental Health Peer Specialist. She lives in New York City with her rescue pup, Lorelai.

Producers
  • MARGOT ASTRACHAN

    is a Tony Award winning commercial theatrical producer based in New York. Broadway: Diana, A New Musical, The Prom, Tony Award winning A Gentleman's Guide to Love and MurderThe Realistic JonesesNice Work If You Can Get It, the revival of On a Clear Day You Can See ForeverBonnie & ClydeBusker AlleyGhost the Musical National Tour, and the only staging of Stephen Sondheim’s Evening Primrose. She also produced The Sting starring Harry Connick Jr. at The Papermill Playhouse. Margot wrote, produced and performed five one-woman cabaret shows.  New York: Danny’s Skylight Room, Judy’s, The Plaza Hotel, The Oak Room of The Algonquin Hotel, the Triad, The National Arts Club, and Don’t Tell Mama’s, among others. With dancer/choreographer Carmen de Lavallade, she wrote the book of a new Jazz musical, which has been read at Lincoln Center and at The York Theater.Margot was the American Artistic Director of the Jermyn Street Theatre in London and The Kings Head Theatre in London, and has had over 30 years’ experience producing special events for Arts Organizations such as The York Theatre Company, The Theatre Museum, and Brit-Arts of The St. George’s Society, which with Jim Dale, featured British and American theatre professionals in readings and panels in New York. She was the Vice Chair of The New York Musical Theatre Festival (NYMF), and is a board member of The Alumni & Friends of The LaGuardia High School for the Arts, Chair of the Theater Advisory Committee of the Library For the Performing Arts at Lincoln Center, a Board Member of The Transport Group and Co-Chair of the Rachel Crothers Award of the League of Professional Theatre Women. She is a graduate of CTI (The Commercial Theatre Institute) and is a member of The Association of Performing Arts Presenters, The National Alliance For Musical Theatre, The Broadway League, The Dramatists Guild, the Advisory Board of TRU, British American Business, Inc. and BAFTA East Coast. She is the past chair of The American Friends of the London Philharmonic Orchestra. Her latest project is Radio Galaxy by Michele Aldin Kushner (found in the TRU Voices series) and directed by Mark Waldrop, currently in development. She is a graduate of CTI (The Commercial Theatre Institute) and is a member of The Association of Performing Arts Presenters, The National Alliance For Musical Theatre, The Broadway League, The Dramatists Guild, the Advisory Board of TRU, British American Business, Inc. and BAFTA East Coast. She is the past chair and current board member of The American Friends of the London Philharmonic Orchestra. Her latest project is Radio Galaxy by Michele Aldin Kushner (found in the TRU Voices series) and directed by Mark Waldrop, currently in development.

  • PATRICK BLAKE

    is a writer/producer based in New York and San Francisco, and Founding Artistic Director of Rhymes Over Beats, a hip hop theater company. In New York theater, he is a producer of the off-Broadway revival of The 39 Steps, the off-Broadway transfer of Bedlam Theater Company's dual productions of Hamlet and Saint Joan, and is currently producing My Life Is a Musical (from the TRU Voices series) which had a debut production at Bay Street Theatre. He was one of the producers of Play Dead! at The Players Theatre, he has produced In the Continuum at Perry Street Theatre, Noah's Archive, Joe Fearless, The Exonerated (Lucille Lortel, Drama Desk, Outer Critics Circle and Court TV's Scales of Justice Award) and The Soap Myth at Southstreet Seaport. He also produced Dirty Works at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival. He was Executive Producer for the short film, The Igloo, and the feature film Mr. Smith Gets a Hustler. Patrick is a proud board member of TRU.

  • TAMRA PICA

    producer and casting director for Write Act Repertory. Tamra's theater and television work spans 33 years and over 250 productions as a prop designer, AEA Stage Manager, producer and casting director of plays, musicals, dance and ice shows. She produces both Off Broadway, as well as, managing the Los Angeles theater presence for Write Act.  Recent credits include the long-running Frankenstein, Wicked City Blues, and Swing.  Other credits include: Lili Marlene, Caldwell’s Bomb for the New York Venus/Adonis Theater Festival, RenewalYour Name on My Lips at Theater for the New City and the long running musical Fabulous! Queen of the New Musicals where she served as a casting director and producer.  Alongside theater, Tamra’s work production, casting, and development television work can be seen for companies such as Disney, Sony, Cartoon Network, NBC Studios, TBS, CBS, MTV, ABC and FOX.  She currently works on the animated Disney series Mira, Royal Detective.

  • MERRIE L. DAVIS

    is a producer (New York, London), Out-of-the-Box Marketer and an Olivier Award Winner for Company, West End (Winner of 4 Olivier awards including Best Musical Revival 2019) and Tony nominated producer for Eclipsed with Lupita Nyong’o (6 Tony nominations). She is currently a producer on Company, Broadway Company on Broadway (9 TONY Nominations including Best Revival of a Musical, 2022). Her producing career began with Gigi the Musical, Himself and Nora, with Matt Bogart (Jersey Boys) and Whitney Bashor (The Bridges of Madison County). Since coming into the New York theatre world she has been investing and raising money for shows including: Dear Evan Hansen, To Kill a Mockingbird, Hello, Dolly!, The Band's Visit, Network among  others. In addition to producing, she is an Out-of-the Box Marketer who founded Next Act 2 Follow, a producing/marketing company, utilizing her unique marketing skills and introducing inventive ideas to the Broadway scene on shows including, Allegiance and 39 Steps. Prior to making a career change into producing, Merrie had been a Publisher and Out-of-the-Box Marketer for over 25+ years in the magazine world dealing in the Hospitality and Tourism industries. While owning her own Visitor Magazines, IN New York and WHERE that were distributed in the hotels, she also had the pleasure of working with all the theater agencies.  Merrie is on the Board of TRU and the Broadway Association and is still delighted that she took the giant leap into an industry that she had always loved!!! 

  • SHARON FALLON

    Sharon Fallon, Sharon Fallon Productions is an independent Theatre Producer, General Manager, and Theatrical Consultant.  Having worked in both the commercial and non-profit theatre industry for over 20 years, she brings a unique perspective to her work.  In 2015 she created a boutique theatrical production/general management company with a mission to bridge the gap between art and business, allowing productions to be financially viable and artistically satisfying, and successful.  Taking a holistic approach – from page to stage and everything in between, she works directly with early-career producers and artist-driven niche projects (showcases, readings, early development workshops, etc.) as well as larger union and non-union projects. In addition to producing commercially, Sharon served as the Associate General Manager of both the Helen Hayes Theatre and Lyric Theatre in New York. She is currently the Executive Producer of MotherFreakingHood and has a number of new works that are in development.  Broadway credits include IndecentBeautiful (Broadway, London & National Tour), Matilda The Musical, and Lysistrata Jones. Sharon is a member of the NAMT, the National Association of Musical Theatres, and serves on the New Work Festival Committee. 
  • NEIL GOODING

    As a director, Neil was nominated for a 2009 Helpmann Award and a 2009 Green Room Award for the Australian premiere of Gutenberg! The Musical!. He has also been nominated for a Sydney Theatre Critics Award for his direction of the Australian premiere of Dogfight. Directing highlights include the Australian premieres of Stalking The Bogeyman and The Bridges Of Madison County and the World Premiere of Paris (in concert), The Red Tree and Becoming Bill. Other highlights include the New York Production of Church And State (Asst. Director), Passion, The Hatpin (Asst. Director). Neil was also assistant director to Gale Edwards for the launch concert of Kookaburra Music Theatre Company. As Producer / Director Neil has created many productions including Sing on Through Tomorrow (a song revue of the music of Matthew Robinson); LOVEBiTES by Peter Rutherford and James Millar; Love Letters (starring Ian Stenlake and Rachael Beck), Truth Beauty And A Picture Of You and High Fidelity (Hayes Theatre Co); the national tour of Thank You for Being A Friend; as well as Side by Side by Sondheim and Diciasette (starring Mark Vincent). His producing work internationally includes the New York productions of Church and State, Handle with Care; The 39 Steps; Alan Cumming’s one-man version of Macbeth on Broadway; as well as being a financial investor in It’s Only A Play and The Ferryman. In London’s West End, NGP has produced the hit Australian play, Holding the Man, Cyrano and the upcoming Back to the Future. 

     

  • MARKUS POTTER

    is the Acting Artistic Director or Center REP in the Bay Area and currently serves as Artistic Director at the University of Kansas.  As a director, he received the Outer Critics Circle Award nomination, New York Times Critic's Pick, and was a Callaway Award finalist for the off-Broadway production of Stalking the Bogeyman at New World Stages. Markus is the former Founding Artistic Director of NewYorkRep and Interim Artistic Director of Theatre Aspen. Other directing projects include Church & State at New World Stages (Off-Broadway Alliance Nominated for best new play), Why You Beasting? (Time Out NY Critics' Pick), and the Associate Director for the Donmar Warehouse production of Blindness at the Daryl Roth Theatre. Regional: Lost Boy Found in Whole Foods by Tammy Ryan at The Portland Stage Company, London's Southwark Playhouse (Off-West End Award nomination for Best Production and Best Direction), Red Speedo at Center REP (Shellie Award nomination for best direction), Kansas Repertory Theatre production of Chasing Gods by Paris Crayton III. As an actor, several seasons at The Guthrie, Denver Center, Long Wharf, tour of Death of A Salesman with Christopher Lloyd, and many more. As Producer, he was on the team that brought the Arena Stage production of Eric Cobble's The Velocity of Autumn to Broadway, starring Estelle Parsons, who received a Tony Award nomination. Markus received his MFA from Columbia University. MarkusPotter.com

  • BLAIR RUSSELL

    is a Tony nominated producer, developer, supporter, and lover of theatre and live performance whose experience ranges from fringe festivals to Broadway shows. His most recent theatre projects include the 12 time Tony-nominated Slave Play by Jeremy O. Harris, Lizard Boy by Justin Huertas, and the concept recording of the new musical For Tonight.  As Co-founder and Director of Operations for Resounding, he produces immersive audio based entertainment and as co-founder of Black Heart his expertise is in producing VR and XR experiences as part of the Black Imagination Series, and large scale live virtual events. Blair has been a guest speaker/artist at a number of institutions including the University of Maryland, University of North Carolina Greensboro, Walnut Hill School for the Performing Arts, and the York School in Monterey, CA. He was also a visiting lecturer for the semester long Atelier program at Princeton University where he collaborated with composer Georgia Stitt on her oratorio The Circling Universe. He has appeared as a guest on a number of podcasts (American Theatre Artists Online, A Star Is Bored, Backstage Talk, Broadway ReFocused), webseries (Actors Unscripted, Awkward Conversations, Be Our Guest! - Live and In Color, Dreamland XR, In The (Home) Office - Goodspeed Musicals), and at global conferences (National Alliance for Musical Theater, Global XR Conference, Immerse Global Summit Series)
     
  • RIC WANETIK

    President of Ricochet Group LLC, a strategic planning and communications advisory.  Known for his onboarding of leadership at major theaters here and in England, Ric is a frequent advisor to several regional theaters and is an active producer, investor and production supervisor.   He is the Senior Advisor for America to the Royal Shakespeare Company (RSC), currently represented on Broadway with Matilda the Musical.  He is also the President of RSC America, a US entity supporting the work of the Royal Shakespeare Company here and around the world. An investor in over 35 Broadway and Off- Broadway productions, Ric was the lead producer and Tony nominated for Anna Deveare Smith’s Twilight Los Angeles: 1992. In 1999, he was the lead producer for Broadway’s Marlene, and was the sole producer of Off-Broadway’s Jolson and Company.  For eight years Ric was the supervising producer for the Victoria Secret’s Fashion Show on CBS-TV and has produced several TV Specials for cable, PBS and universities including: Segment Producer, Great Performances Anniversary Special; Executive Producer, A Tribute to Comden and Green directed by Patricia Birch;  Producer for Ohio TV Network and CBS, What Ohio Kids Need. He is a frequent speaker and lecturer on theatre management and marketing. 

  • KIM VASQUEZ

    Gray Lady Entertainment, Inc. is a theatrical producing and consulting company, specializing in the development and structuring of new works in plays and musicals in NYC and beyond. Originally from the Twin Cities, Kim has spent the majority of her professional life in New York City and, during Covid 19, back in the Twin Cities, wearing many hats as an Actor, Director, Voice and Speech coach, Mentor, Executive Producer and Producing Director. 
    Kim is currently a co-producer on The Kite Runner (The Hayes) which runs through October 30th, 2022 with a tour beginning in early 2024. She is also a producer on How to Dance in Ohio and Bruce both of which are potential Broadway bound new musicals. She is a producer on the world-renowned Be More Chill (Broadway, Off-Broadway, London and Japan) and the Off Broadway productions of Broadway Bounty Hunter, which starred Annie Golden, Alan H. Green and Brad Oscar and Church & State. She has served on the general management team at The Producing Office for the Broadway productions of In The Heights, Avenue Q, Rent, Ragtime, Irving Berlin’s White Christmas, to name a few and with Robert Cole and Steven Chaikelson on A Moon for the Misbegotten and The Price. Kim is an original Founding Producer of The New York Musical Theatre Festival (NYMF). This month, Kim will be leading a professional training lecture to the BFA/Guthrie 4th year graduating students on her experiences and life as a Broadway Producer and she is participating as a director for The Senator Speaks by Michael Hagins for The Playwrights Playground and Ripple Effects Artists.
  • ALY YORK

    holds a bachelor’s degree in theatre from Syracuse University and is an alumni of the prestigious Eugene O’Neill Theater Center. Additionally she is a member of the Classical Theatre Lab in Los Angeles, Ca. Aly is an indie producer and has produced several plays throughout the Los Angeles and Philadelphia area. She has produced 4 of Phil Olson's plays; 2 of which were world premieres -- additionally she produced Phil's short film he wrote with Paul Lazarus called Graham: A Dog's Story starring Tatyana Ali and Chris Williams. Recently Aly produced Neil Simon's London Suite at the GRT in Los Angeles, Ca. Aly has worked with the great Tony Tanner, Louis Fantasia, Richard Digby Day, Howard Fine and Jay Goldenberg.

  • MAUREEN CONDON

    is a recent graduate of TRU’s Producer Development Master and Foundations Classes, and was assistant to the producers for the 2021 TRUSpeak Benefit.  In 2019, Condon helped raise production funding for the Cape Cod Theatre Company’s debut of her new musical comedy CRUDE-The Climate Change Musical. Condon has produced and directed TV commercials that have aired on The Weather Channel and other cable TV channels. Condon has also produced documentary and promotional videos for Fortune 500 and high tech companies. Notable, among her productions focusing on technology, are:  “Severe Weather,” a documentary distributed nationwide to TV weathercasters; a documentary about NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory and the Fly-by of Saturn by NASA’s Voyager II Spacecraft; and a Maysles Brothers’ cinema verite film about Polaroid Corporation’s technology. Condon has also produced, directed and choreographed multi-media/live fashion and magic shows for trade shows nationwide. Memberships include:  Theater Resources Unlimited; League of Professional Theatre Women; CreateTheater; ASCAP; The Dramatist Guild; and The Eventide Theatre Company’s Playwrights’ Lab.

  • AMY DRAKE

    is a playwright and producer. She has held the positions of Sr. Accountant working in stock trading and Sr. Communications Coordinator in IT with Nationwide Insurance for which she was awarded a Silver Quill of Excellence by the International Association of Business Communicators for web content. She holds a MALS degree and a master’s degree in marketing and communication which has allowed her to market her own productions and work with other theater practitioners as clients. Amy has self-produced numerous short plays in festivals in NYC winning two Audience Favorite Awards. She is an alum of the Kennedy Center Playwriting Intensive, the Yale Writers’ Workshop, and the Cambridge Univ. Summer Study Program.

  • STEPHANIE POPE LOFGREN

    is a writer, director, voice artist, emerging producer, wife, mother and a Broadway musical theater veteran with a career spanning over 35 years.
    Stephanie currently is a Board Member of New City Music Theatre, whose mission is to harness the power of the performing arts to challenge the status quo and to respond to the pulse of a contemporary generation through engaging, informed and inclusive experiences on and off the stage.
    www.newcitymusictheatre.org
    As a performer, Broadway and touring credits include the revival of Pippin, (Astaire Award nomination, ACCA Award and the beloved Legacy Robe), Chicago (Velma Kelly), Thoroughly Modern Millie (Muzzy Van Hossmere), Fosse (Leading Player), Smokey Joe’s Cafe (Brenda), A Funny Thing... Forum (Gymnasia), Kiss of The Spider Woman (Stand-by for Ms. Chita Rivera), Jelly’s Last Jam (The Hunnies) and The Will Rogers Follies...just to name a few.
    She has the honor of having been hand-picked by the legendary director - choreographer, Bob Fosse, along with his wife, Gwen Verdon, for her first two Broadway shows, the revival of Sweet Charity starring Debbie Allen and Bebe Neuwirth and Bob Fosse’s Big Deal and she is one of a handful of performers who teach Fosse Master Classes on behalf of The Fosse Estate and The Verdon Fosse Legacy LLC.
    As a writer and emerging producer, Ms. Pope has several projects in development for stage, screen and television. She has completed the TRU PDMP and Producer Master Class and has been a contributing producer for several  TRU play reading series events. www.stephaniepope.com

  • DONALD LOFTUS

    is an American playwright, librettist, and lyricist whose work has been presented on stages across America, The United Kingdom, Surathkal, India, and Uppsala, Sweden. He recently won the W. Keith Hedrick National Playwriting Award, was named a finalist for the Robert J. Pickering / J.R. Colbeck Award for Playwriting Excellence, and was selected to participate in the 2022 William Inge Theatre Festival. As a producer, Donald has produced several of his plays for New York’s Emerging Artist Theatre and Equity Staged Readings of his musicals Abbey Victoria, Pollyanna and Apple Annie. In addition, Donald manages a playwrights/actors developmental group known as P.A.G.E.S., which moved from in-person to online with the pandemic and now has over 200 members from across the U.S. and worldwide. Before focusing on playwriting full-time, Donald had a distinguished career in the luxury beauty industry, serving as the U.S. President of several companies including Proctor & Gamble Prestige, Wella’s Cosmopolitan Cosmetics, and Sanofi Beauté, managing the fragrance and cosmetic brands of Yves Saint Laurent, Gucci, Dolce & Gabbana, Hugo Boss, Kenneth Cole, Escada, Burberry, Christian Lacroix and many more.  Donald has also served as the Chairman of the Board of The Fashion Group and The Fragrance Foundation and was a member of the Board of Directors of The Women’s Project Theatre. He has been honored by The American Cancer Society, The March of Dimes, B.R.A.G., The Fragrance Foundation, Fashion Group Int’l, and The Dramatist’s Guild Foundation with a Patron of the Arts Award for his work in helping keep live theatER thriving. Donald currently serves on the Board of Directors of The Dramatists Guild Foundation and is a member of two playwriting groups: DGPG and P.A.G.E.S., both based in New York City. 

     

  • CHRISTOPHER MICHAELS

    is the Founder and Producing Artistic Director of IndieWorks Theatre Company in New York City and the Executive Producer and Resident Director of the multi-award-winning podcast series, Bite-Sized Broadway: A Mini-Musical Podcast. He has been the lead producer and resident director for numerous productions, concerts, cabarets, and projects large and small, including the Off-Broadway musical, The Giant Hoax (Theatre Row), “fan favorite” festival productions of Casper, The Not-So-Friendly Ghost and Empty Frames, The Commuters… (the most-nominated production of the year including a nomination for Best Musical and a win for Best Director) to name a few. He is the Executive Producer for IndieWorks’ Summer Cabaret Series, for the short musical film, Valley High (based on the song by Drew Gasparini), and the hit Dungeons & Dragons-inspired improv show, The Campaign. Christopher is a current member of the TRU Producer Development and Mentorship Program, an associate member of the Stage Directors and Choreographers Society, and a certified Covid Compliance Officer for theatre production and patron safety. www.ChristopherMichaels.nyc | @itscmikes on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.

  • BOB STACHEL

    writer/director/producer now based in Manhattan. Formerly producer/director of the Massachusetts Theater Experiment (The Other Side of Town - devised work about women who take over a mob when the men prove incompetent gangsters. all-female version of Wycherly's The Country Wife), artistic co-director Shadowboxing Theatre Workshop.

  • TRACY SWEDLOW

    is CEO, publisher, and editor-in-chief of InteractiveTV Today (ITVT) (https://itvt.com), founded in 1998; and the co-executive producer and director of the TV of Tomorrow Show conferences (https://itvt.com/tvot) that occur in San Francisco and New York City or as livestreaming events. ITVT email newsletter and Web site are read by thousands of high-level TV multiplatform-focused executives around the world. I interview these executives and creatives via video interviews called “Televisionation” (https://itvt.com/televisionation)

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