Faculty Spotlight: Playwriting with Steven Dietz, Kirk Lynn and Suzan Zeder

The UT Austin M.F.A. in Playwriting curriculum emphasizes the generation and revision of new work and progressive collaborations with fellow writers and artists. Students of this demanding program need look no further than to their own faculty for inspiration and prime of examples of this charge.

One of the nation’s leading playwrights for family audiences, Professor Suzan Zeder’s The Edge of Peace was commissioned and developed by Seattle Children’s Theatre and presented at Northwestern in conjunction with the American Alliance for Theatre and Education’s (AATE) national conference this past July. Zeder is a three-time winner of the Distinguished Play Award given by AATE.

The Edge of Peace presented as a staged reading at the 2009 University Co-op Presents the Cohen New Works Festival. Photo by David Bjurstrom.

 Lecturer Kirk Lynn and his company Rude Mechs are being produced coast to coast. The Method Gun is on tour now and was most recently seen at the Philadelphia Live Arts Festival in September. If you live in the Los Angeles area, you just missed I’ve Never Been So Happy presented by Center Theatre Group at the Kirk Douglas Theatre in October. New York City audiences, there’s still time to catch Lynn’s How Much is Enough? : Our Values in Question presented by the Foundry Theatre at St Ann’s Warehouse through November 27.

Kirk Lynn and the cast of I’ve Never Been So Happy in rehearsal during the June 2009 Rude Mechs and The University of Texas at Austin Department of Theatre and Dance  Workshop and Work-in-Progress Showing of I’ve Never Been So Happy. Photo by Ben Aqua.

Recent recipient of the Creative Research Award at the Robert W. Hamilton Book Awards, Professor Steven Dietz also accepted the 2011-2012 Ingram New Works Fellowship earlier this fall for which he will write a new play to premiere at the Ingram New Works Festival May 30 – June 9, 2012. Dietz’s 360 (round dance) will take our very own Oscar G. Brockett Theatre stage this Friday, November 11.

A wife and husband, performed by Alexis Scott and Jeremy Lee Cudd, discuss the affairs of marriage in Steven Dietz’s 360 (round dance). Photo by Jeff Heimsath.

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