Category Archives: updates

Run Leviathan Run!

Anyone who knows me knows how  passionate I am about playwriting and theater.  And even if you don’t know me personally, hopefully that passion comes through in my work and the tidbits I’ve shared on my website.  So I’d like to take this opportunity to ask for your help in supporting a new theater company that I’m particularly passionate about right now: Leviathan Lab.

Leviathan Lab’s mission is to advance Asian American performing artists by providing opportunities, resources and support for its company members.  I’m proud to say that I’m not only a company member, but also the Co-Director of the Leviathan Lab Asian American Women Writers Workshop (LLAAWWW), the first writers group of its kind in the country.  I feel truly blessed to be amongst a group of such talented, supportive and generous artists.

We have a lot of ambitious and exciting projects in the works this year, including a site-specific theatrical event written by LLAAWWW members, a screening of 10-minute films produced by our Film and New Media Initiative, and the Shakespeare Quartets.  But we need your help to make it all happen!

On April 7, Leviathan Labbies will be participating in Run Leviathan Run!, a 10K race in Central Park to raise money for our upcoming projects.  I’m lucky enough to have a husband who is both extraordinarily athletic and incredibly supportive, so we have teamed up for this effort.  He’ll be running the 10K while I, along with fellow Labbie and teammate Dorim Lee, make sure we reach our fundraising goals.

We’ve pledged to raise at least $1000 and we hope you’ll help us realize our goal.  All donations are fully tax-deductible, and no donation is too small – or too big!  We hope that you’ll help us achieve all of Leviathan Lab’s goals for 2012 and beyond – this is only the beginning!

Please visit www.leviathanlab.com and click DONATE NOW under Team Reyes-DeCrow.  Once you’ve made your donation, please email info@leviathanlab.com and say, “I’ve made a pledge to support Team Reyes-DeCrow!”

Thanks so much for your support and I’ll be sure to keep you posted on all these exciting projects!  In the meantime, follow @LeviathanLab and hashtag #RunLeviathanRun on Twitter to get all the inside scoop!

Many thanks,
Kristine
Team Reyes-DeCrow

I’m a Rockwell Scholar, y’all!

The 2012 ESPA at Primary Stages Rockwell Scholars From Left: Patrice Bell, Anna Nugent, David Davila, Kristine M. Reyes // Photo credit: Jon Kandel

On January 31st, Primary Stages announced their upcoming  2012-2013 Season and unveiled their new scholarship program named after the late Mary Louise Rockwell, a long-time board member of the acclaimed Off-Broadway theater company.   According to Tessa LaNeve, Literary Manager of Primary Stages and Director of ESPA, “Each year, five individuals will be selected for this distinguished award based on their overwhelming generosity of spirit, commitment to their craft, enthusiasm for our school, and longstanding reliability.”

The 2012 ESPA at Primary Stages Rockwell Scholars were introduced that evening, and I’m ecstatic to share the news that I’m one of them!  The other Rockwell Scholars are Patrice Bell, David Brian Colbert, David Davila and Anna Nugent, and I’m excited to be amongst a group of such lovely and talented theater artists!

As Scholars, we’ll receive guaranteed Work Study positions as Teaching Assistants in one class each for the Spring and Summer semesters.  The instructors for whom we TA – all working theater professionals – will also serve as our mentors.

As an ESPA student for the past two years, I have become more prolific, more disciplined, more inspired and more determined to continue my journey as a playwright.  I have not only built my craft, I have also built relationships with fellow students, my instructors and the staff at ESPA and Primary Stages.   It’s an incredible honor to be recognized as a valued member of the ESPA and Primary Stages community, and I’m thrilled to represent them as a Rockwell Scholar.

I really can’t say enough about ESPA.  If you want to read more, check out:

My piece on ESPA’s Detention Series

My Yelp review of ESPA

A year of firsts…

Since April of this year, I’ve been working on a new play for Women of Color Productions.  Two other playwrights and I had been tasked to write about women of color and human rights issues, a challenge that was both terrifying and exciting, and has brought about a lot of firsts for me as a playwright.

For one thing, it would be the first time I was writing a play that didn’t stem directly from my own personal experience.  Yes, I am one of those playwrights who “writes what she knows.”  But what it really boils down to is writing what I’m trying to know.  Or writing what I’m afraid to know.  And looking at it from that perspective made it a lot easier to delve into this world of characters that are new to me, but not completely foreign.

Something else that was new to me was writing a heavily researched play.  The topic that initially interested me was Filipino “comfort women” of World War II.  It was something I knew about on the periphery of my Filipino cultural & historical knowledge, but I was curious to find out more.   My main source of information and inspiration was from the autobiography of Maria Rosa Henson, the first Filipina “comfort woman” to come forward with her story, entitled Comfort Woman: A Filipina’s Story of Prostitution and Slavery Under the Japanese Military.  It was eye-opening to read such a detailed, yet unsentimental first-hand account of her harrowing experience.  From there, I had a great starting point.

Another first was incorporating dance and straying from a straightforward naturalistic style.  In my research, I read about a group of activist Filipino “comfort women” who protested at the Japanese Embassy by reenacting their stories through dance.  I can’t imagine how horrifying it must have been for these women to live through that experience once, but to re-live it as a means of protest was such a bold, powerful act that I knew I wanted to incorporate some of that into the play.

The last first for me was working with a dramaturg.  I was actually brought into the program by our dramaturg, Maxine Kern, who has worked with Diverse City Theater Company (DCT) quite a lot.  DCT produced two of my one-acts last year, and Maxine sat in on a couple of rehearsals and gave me some useful notes, so I knew I would be in good hands.  But I had no idea how good!  Her insight was invaluable and opened up so many possibilities within the play that I couldn’t have thought up myself.  The time, care and positive feedback she gave to my play was incredibly encouraging, especially during the rough patches of self-doubt and uncertainty that all playwrights go through.  This experience alone has made the writing of this play rewarding and worthwhile.

We had the first table reading of our plays a couple of weeks ago, and it was wonderful to hear the work come alive for the first time.  I was blessed with good actors, and that makes a huge difference.  I also received a lot of positive feedback from those who attended our reading, and that’s always reassuring.

After this year of firsts, it’s appropriate that the title of my new play is Lola Luning’s First Steps.  And I honestly didn’t realize that until just now.  This weekend is our second table reading, so I guess I’m finished with these firsts. Now it’s time for seconds.

To find out more about Lola Luning’s First Steps, please click the Projects tab.

finally…something!

hello world!

it only took me six months, but i finally have some content up on the site! please check out the About tab to get to know me a little better, and click the Plays tab to find out more about my plays.  thanks for reading!

welcome to my website!

welcome to the official website of playwright kristine m. reyes!  as you can see, this site is currently under construction.  please check back soon for updates.  thanks!