Appalachian Playwriting Festival - They Must Be Women Now (first reading)
The Appalachian Playwriting Festival is a celebration of Appalachian Culture. It is a preservation of the stories, people, and traditions that make our community so wonderful. This festival is an opportunity to give back by offering a microphone to those voices telling the stories of our home and heart. Our 2023 festival will include 3 plays, presented at staged readings. One script from this festival will be chosen to be produced on our stage in 2024.
Minister of Sorrow
Written by Pam Kingsley
It is 1937. Emma is a pack-saddle librarian who came to her calling by way of a painful route. We learn of her life as she shares some of her favorite people in stories.
They Must Be Women Now
Written by Nedra Pezold Roberts
They Must Be Women Now explores multiple social issues, from gender and race to marriage and class/caste. Like her ancient precursor Antigone, Charleen (alias Sweet Tea) has a big mouth that gets her into trouble—specifically, fired from her high-powered job in Atlanta where she was feeling demeaned by men. Unemployment sends her home to Half Way, Georgia, and to her mother, the feisty owner of Miss Althea’s Bridal Boutique and Bail Bonds; Althea’s black business partner, Olivia; the imperious Lurleen and her daughter Betsy, pregnant by her “passing” fiancé Trey; and Althea’s long-haul trucker husband, Skip.
Clocks Are Like Angels
Written by Kyle R. Thomas
This play takes place in a small town in East Tennessee in 1933, when the
Tennessee Valley Authority rolled in and started buying up land and displacing families. The story opens with a family burying their fifth baby, and later they find out that they have to dig up and rebury their dead as part of their forced move, which is just unthinkable. Twists and turns and betrayals ensue, leading to a tragic ending.
Pamela Kingsley: Pamela Kingsley’s plays have been produced by theatres around the U.S., most recently in Boston, Cleveland, Columbia (MO), Kansas City, Los Angeles, Louisville, New Haven, NYC, the State University of New York (Brockport), Richmond, San Francisco, Santa Fe, and Spokane. Her play Mother's Day was a 2019 finalist for the James Stevenson Prize for Short Comedic Plays and won the "Audience Choice Award” at the 31st Playwrights' Forum Festival in the Pacific Northwest. In October 2021, Pam had three new works selected for Stage Left Theater's “Masterpiece Monologues” series. Pam was then commissioned to write and subsequently performed a solo piece, Sleepwalking, which was featured in the EMPOWER WOMEN Festival at Stage Left and streamed online. Sleepwalking was also selected for Irondale Ensemble’s 2022 ON WOMEN Festival - New Media Library (NYC). The play was streamed online and received an Audience Pick award. In June 2022, Pam’s plays Finding Mother Courage and Boxes were selected for the 32nd Playwrights’ Forum Festival. Boxes won the “Audience Choice Award.” Both The Sitting and Boxes will be produced as part of TheatreWorks NAPAC 2023 Humanity Festival in greater Louisville. Pam’s most recent work, Minister of Sorrow, was selected to be one of three plays featured in the Appalachian Play Festival in September 2023. Pam holds a BFA in Theatre Performance and MA in Theatre Education. She will be part of the Inland Northwest Playwriting Panel for GET LIT! 2023.
Nedra Pezold Roberts: Nedra Pezold Roberts is a playwright in Atlanta. For several decades she taught English and drama; most of her writing, including two textbooks (one a critical anthology of plays), was in the academic arena. She took early retirement to write her own plays rather than teaching those of others. Her first drama was an O’Neill finalist, and the premiere run at California Stage Company swept seven Elly awards. Since then her plays have had production runs and staged readings coast to coast plus Canada and the UK. Several of the plays have had readings in the Asheville area (SART, ACT, Hendersonville Theatre, Autumn Players). A number of Nedra’s plays have won competitions and received publication. She is a lifetime member of the Dramatists Guild and is represented by Marta Praeger with the Freedman Agency in New York.
Kyle R. Thomas: I am a playwright from Tennessee. I have been writing for several years but am just now starting to send my plays out into the world. I have recently had a monologue play produced as part of the Rogue Theatre Festival at The Players Theatre in New York City. I believe that storytelling is universal. Stories permeate my consciousness. I write about things that keep me up at night, and I like to write about the secrets we keep. I am an avid reader of other plays, and I love it when I come across a playwright who has opened a new door that I can then walk through. Whether it’s challenging form or content, or a clever twist of language or structure, I love the endless opportunities that the theatre can provide. I believe it is the most vital art form.