Arizona Students Playing Key Roles In #ENOUGH: Plays To End Gun Violence

Nine students from the Tucson area, Mesa and Laveen participating in Arizona Theatre Company’s ATCteen program are playing key roles in the digital premiere of seven winning plays from #ENOUGH: Plays to End Gun Violence, a national short play competition for middle and high school students.

Arizona Theatre Company (ATC) is one of five companies across the nation collaborating in the program. The winning plays will be available on the streaming platform Broadway on Demand (BOD) beginning Dec. 14, the eight-year remembrance of the shootings at Sandy Hook Elementary School in 2012. The digital premieres can be viewed for free. Registration is required at broadwayondemand.com.

ATCteen students will perform a staged reading of Debkanya Mitra’s play, Malcolm. Malcolm tells the story of a Black folk musician whose quest through the Eastern Seaboard to find himself was violently interrupted and paints an evocative picture of the connection shared among strangers through a single life.

Arizona students producing and starring in the digital reading are: Isabella Beres, Tucson High School; Preston Campbell-Cueva, Tucson High School; Mika Fricke, Tucson; Roark Polzin, Tucson; Petra Polzin, Tucson; Leander Rios, Sunnyside High School, Tucson; Faith Santos, Sierra Linda High School, Laveen; Zoie Staats, Empire High School, Vail; and Lauren Youngstedt, Red Mountain High School, Mesa.

“Malcolm is a powerful play about a powerful subject that is attracting young people across the country as advocates,” said Jasmine Roth, ATC Director of Learning and Education. “Participating in #ENOUGH is a tremendous opportunity for Arizona Theatre Company and our students to share their voices as part of an impactful and important effort.”

Other theatre companies producing one or more of the plays are Alliance Theatre (Atlanta, GA), Berkeley Rep (Berkeley, CA), Goodman Theatre (Chicago), Orlando (FL) Repertory Theatre and South Coast Repertory (Costa Mesa, CA).

The six other winners and their producing Theatre Partners include:

· Ms. Martin’s Malaise by Adelaide Fisher, produced by Orlando Repertory Theatre.

· Guns in Dragonland by Eislinn Gracen, produced by Orlando Repertory Theatre.

· Togetha by Azya Lyons, produced by Alliance Theatre.

· Ghost Gun by Olivia Ridley, produced by Goodman Theatre

· Hullabaloo by Sarah Schecter, produced by Berkeley Repertory Theatre.

· Loaded Language by Elizabeth Shannon, produced by South Coast Repertory.

A panel of nationally-recognized dramatists – Lauren Gunderson, America’s most produced living playwright (Silent Sky, The Heath); Academy Award winner Tarell Alvin McCraney, who the Oscar for Best Writing, Adapted Screenplay for Moonlight; Tony Award winner David Henry Hwang, who won the Tony Award for Best Play for M. Butterfly; and Karen Zacariís (Native Gardens), winner of ATC’s National Latinx Playwright Award — selected the plays out of 184 submissions from 23 states and three countries in #ENOUGH’s call for teens to write 10-minute plays that confront the issue of gun violence.

In tandem with the Digital Premiere of the seven winning plays, all of the Theatre Partners have committed to creating space for community dialogue on the issue of gun violence by hosting a post-show discussion and committing to an action item that impacts their community.

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