The New York Theatre Workshop (NYTW) completed its sixth summer residency at Adelphi University.
Leading national theater organization, New York Theatre Workshop (NYTW), has a long history of fruitful collaboration with the Adelphi University Performing Arts Center (Adelphi PAC). This summer, Adelphi hosted the workshop’s sixth summer residency from June 5-18, where 11 students from the Department of Theater gained a significant edge in the world of theatrical project development.
Founded in 1979, NYTW’s productions have received a Pulitzer Prize, 17 Tony Awards and assorted Obie, Drama Desk and Lucille Lortel Awards. They work with more than 1,800 artists annually and have developed hundreds of productions including Adelphi alumnus Jonathan Larson’s Rent, Doug Wright’s Quills and Martha Clarke’s Vienna: Lusthaus. Emerging playwrights, actors, dramaturgs and more have gained success through NYTW’s Artist Workshop activities, including participating in residency programs as fellows.
During the course of the residency, students and NYTW fellows worked on projects that were shared at the end of the residency as work-in-progress readings. Students were able to make connections with the artists, observe new ways to develop art, refine acting techniques, complete historical research and learn new theater terms and procedures. Though their responsibility was to assist the residency, collaboration played a key role in the experience.
“The first day we sat down, and all the actors read the play, they asked us what we thought. We were able to contribute, which we didn’t expect and they were receptive to it,” said Harper LaBrozzi ’20, one of the student interns. “It was truly ‘Hey really, what do you think of this?’ and that was something you do not get everywhere.”
Some students enjoyed the program so much that they decided to participate for a second year.
“Well coincidentally, the first time I saw a show at NYTW, which was my freshman year here, I immediately thought ‘I would love to do a show there,’” said Joanna Georghiou ’20, who described the experience as one to help students reach their future goals.“That’s a goal for myself, to be cast in a show at the Workshop. I feel like I’m closer to that now because I’ve done this twice and I’m getting to know the people who work there and see how they run which is amazing.”
The NYTW guest artists were eager to participate in the program and work with the students. One of the artists, Amauta Marston-Fermino, described the program as refreshing because groups of people come together to focus on creating art. Other artists agreed that the program will have a lasting effect. “If any one of these students were like ‘Hey I’m moving to New York, do you know anyone? Can you help me find an apartment? Can you put me in touch with who you know at X Y Z?’ I would be glad to do it,” said Ato Blankson-Wood, another guest artist.
The program began as an initiative led by the College of Arts and Sciences. Over the past six years, the program has extended its residency at Adelphi to provide more time for collaboration.
“It’s a tremendous opportunity for us to bring artists outside of New York City and work within Adelphi’s space aided by the theater students,” said Artistic Producing Associate, Rachel Silverman from NYTW. “It is very meaningful to us and to the artists we bring up to be able to work in such great facilities and be taken such good care of. One of my favorite parts is seeing how much work is always accomplished within each residency, and to see how the resources at Adelphi have helped to develop the piece in ways it may not have gone had we been working elsewhere.”
About the New York Theatre Workshop
New York Theatre Workshop, now in its fourth decade of incubating important new works of theatre, continues to honor its mission to explore perspectives on our collective history and respond to the events and institutions that shape all our lives. Each season, from its home in New York’s East Village, NYTW presents four new productions, over 80 readings and numerous workshop productions for over 45,000 audience members. NYTW supports artists in all stages of their careers by maintaining a series of workshop programs, including work-in-progress readings, summer residencies and artist fellowships. Since its founding, NYTW has produced over 100 new, fully staged works, including Jonathan Larson’s Rent; Tony Kushner’s Slavs! and Homebody/Kabul; Doug Wright’s Quills; Claudia Shear’s Blown Sideways Through Life and Dirty Blonde; Paul Rudnick’s The Most Fabulous Story Ever Told and Valhalla; Martha Clarke’s Vienna: Lusthaus; Caryl Churchill’s Mad Forest, Far Away, A Number and Love and Information; Jessica Blank and Erik Jensen’s Aftermath; Glen Hansard, Markéta Irglová and Enda Walsh’s Once; Rick Elice’s Peter and the Starcatcher; David Bowie and Enda Walsh’s Lazarus; Anaïs Mitchell’s Hadestown; and eight acclaimed productions directed by Ivo van Hove. NYTW’s productions have received a Pulitzer Prize, seventeen Tony Awards and assorted Obie, Drama Desk and Lucille Lortel Awards.
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