JUNE 5th - 30th



Jeffrey and Paula Gural Theatre
502 West 53rd Street
New York, NY 10019

The Women in Theatre Festival seeks to broaden the opportunities for women in the entertainment industry by producing new work by women with more than 50% female representation of all artists involved.



A commissioned World Premiere by Megan Monaghan Rivas

Co-Directed by Michole Biancosino and Andrew William Smith

Featuring Essence Stiggers, Ella Dershowitz*, Kate Margalite*, Ashley Bufkin*, Christina Liang*, Joleen Wilkinson*, Helen Farmer*, Zack Calhoon*, Valentino MusumeciJavan Nelson and Cole Merrell

Stage Manager: Lauren Blanks
Assistant SM: Natalie Nankervis
Costume Designer: Olivia Hern
Sound Designer: Yiran Zhang
Set Designer: Chen-Wei Laio
Light Designer: Hallie Zieselman
Fight Director: Carlotta Summers
Dramaturg: Dani Joseph
Assistant to the Director: Cole Merrell


Megan Monaghan Rivas' Three Musketeers: 1941 is an evocative, thought-provoking new work that is imperative in today's political climate....


With a fast-paced plot and empowering message, Three Musketeers: 1941 is a must-see....


It is more important than ever to tell strong stories about women, by women, and for women- and the Women In Theatre festival does exactly that. Three Musketeers: 1941 will have you chanting "all for one, and one for all!"

Inspired by characters from Alexandre Dumas’ classic adventure novel, this new play is set in the occupied Paris of World War II. The Third Reich has hung every balcony in the City of Light with swastika banners and filled the streets with the tramp of goose-stepping boots. While the French police pander to Nazi occupiers, in a secret room five brave women struggle to keep hope alive for themselves and their fellow citizens. The arrival of two strangers sets off a chain of events that might just turn the tide in this thriller about what happens when a group of women take up the chant, “All for one, and one for all!”


Three Musketeers 1941 is an Equity Approved Showcase
* Members of Actors Equity Association


Tickets: $27 General Admission


June 5, 6, 8, 14, 15, 21, 25, 27, 28, 29 at 7:30pm

June 8, 9, 16 at 2pm


Megan Monaghan Rivas (Playwright) is a dramaturg, director, and playwright based in Pittsburgh, PA. She has been honored by the Literary Managers and Dramaturgs of the Americas (LMDA) with the international Elliott Hayes Prize in Dramaturgy. Megan has held artistic leadership positions at the Lark Play Development Center in New York City and The Playwrights’ Center in Minneapolis, and served as literary manager of South Coast Repertory Theatre, literary director of the Alliance Theatre in Atlanta, and director of new play development for Frontera @ Hyde Park Theatre in Austin, TX. She has freelanced with the O’Neill National Playwrights Conference, the New Harmony Project, the Geffen Playhouse, Quantum Theatre, Aurora Theatre, the Salt Lake Acting Company, TheatreSquared, Actors Express Theatre, and Horizon Theatre. She joined the faculty of the School of Drama at Carnegie Mellon University in 2013.



Michole Biancosino (Producer, Co-Director) is the Co-Founding Artistic Director of Project Y Theatre Company, where she has developed and directed new work in Washington, D.C. and New York City over the past 19 years.  With Project Y, she has led various professional productions, as producer, director, and writer.  She devised and directed the world premiere of the NY Innovative Award-winning “Landmarks & TRANSformations.” She is the co-creator and director of the long-running shows, Trump Lear and the award-winning, Gary Busey’s One Man Hamlet (as performed by David Carl), both of which received runs through the US in theatres including Chicago Shakespeare Theatre, Kitchen Dog Theatre in Dallas, TX, and runs in Colorado and Florida. Both shows received co-productions in Edinburgh Fringe with the U.K.-based Richard Jordan Productions.  She directed the NY Innovative Theatre Award-winning NY Premiere of CONNECTED, by Lia Romeo, at 59E59 Theaters where it had record sales and attendance.  She co-created and directed Gary Busey’s One Man Hamlet (as performed by David Carl) at FringeNYC, where it received an Award for “Outstanding Solo Show” and an extended Fringe Encore! run at Baruch Performing Arts Center, followed by a run at Underbelly as part of the Edinburgh Fringe August 2015. The show was reviewed by The New York Times, calling it “a head-spinning performance.” She also directed Addie Walsh’s That’s All I Got, at the United Solo Festival where it won an Award for “Best Variety Show.”  In the past she has directed the World Premiere of Lee Blessing’s User’s Guide to Hell, featuring Bernard Madoff, at Atlantic Stage 2, the World Premiere musical LoveSick or THINGS THAT DON’T HAPPEN, plays by Lia Romeo, songs by Tony Biancosino, at 59E59 Theaters, nominated for 3 NYIT Awards including Best Production of a Musical, the critically acclaimed The Revival, by Samuel Brett Williams, at Theatre Row, nominated for 7 NYIT Awards, including Best Production of a Play and Outstanding Direction, and named The Advocate’s #2 show of 2010. Her production of Samuel Brett Williams’ Derby Day at Theatre Row’s The Clurman was named one of the Top 10 shows of 2011 by Paper Mag.  


She directs Peter Michael Marino’s long-running solo shows, Show Up! And Show Up.. Kids!, both of which continue to tour venues across the country and internationally. Michole is a Founder and Producer of Project Y’s Women in Theatre Festival, now in its 4th year, which supports the work of 75-100 women artists each summer. 


Michole was the recipient of the prestigious SDC Gielgud Fellowship for classical directing and was featured as a Top Young Woman Artist in Nervy Girl Magazine. Her work with Project Y Theatre has been supported by grants from The Puffin Foundation, ART/NY, NY Department of Cultural Affairs (DCA), The Dramatists Guild, LitNY Fund, EAG Open Space Grant, and New York State Council on the Arts (NYSCA).  She is a two-time SPARC grantee through the Brooklyn Arts Council. She holds an MFA in Directing from Rutgers University, Mason Gross School of the Arts. This August she returns to Edinburgh for a second run of Trump Lear at the Pleasance Courtyard. She is currently an Assistant Professor at Middlebury College in the Department of Theatre. For more information: 



Andrew W. Smith (Producer, Co-Director of Three Musketeers 1941, Technical Director) is a professional Actor, Director, and Producer whose work has been seen throughout New York City, regionally, and internationally. He is also the Co-Founding Artistic Director of award-winning Project Y Theatre Company in New York City.


Selected regional acting work includes: Pittsburgh Public Theatre, Pittsburgh City Theatre, Quantum Theatre, Actor’s Theatre of Louisville, Seattle Repertory Theatre, Arena Stage, Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company, Roundhouse Theatre, Potomac Theatre Project, Ars Nova, Studio Theatre, and Olney Center for the Arts. He toured with The National Players on their 50th anniversary as Cyrano in Cyrano de Bergerac. Filmwork includes Lucid, Shooting Script, Death of a Nation (Winner:  Best Short, IndieFest 2011; Best in Show, Best Shorts Competition 2011), Under-Ground. Television work includes GONE, Law and Order: Criminal Intent, One Life to Live, As the World Turns, Guiding Light.


Andrew is currently an Assistant Professor of Acting at the Carnegie Mellon School of Drama. He also spent two years as a Visiting Assistant Professor of Theatre at Middlebury College, Vermont, from which he also received his BA in theatre. He is also graduate of the MFA Acting program at the University of California, San Diego, from which he received the Teaching Excellence Award upon graduation.



Zack Calhoon (Richelieu) recently played Tom in The Glass Menagerie (Fulton Theatre). Other credits include: Fountainhead/John in Water by the Spoonful (Premiere Stages), Ever Montgomery in Dancing Lessons (Kitchen Theatre Company/Geva Theatre Center), Hamlet in Hamlet, The Real Thing, King Lear, Henry IV Part 1, In Fields Where They Lay. Film/TV: The Subject, Braid, Do Not Go Gentle (BBC). 





Kate Margalite (Porthos)  is thrilled to be a part of this wonderful production and festival! Past credits include The Empaths (Wellfleet Harbor Actors’ Theatre), Damn Yankees (Pittsburgh Civic Light Opera), and Shrek (Pittsburgh Civic Light Opera). Carnegie Mellon BFA Musical Theatre. Infinite thanks to her family, friends, Gabe and Rachel. @katemargalite 






Ella Dershowitz (Athos):  Project Y:Connected.  Off-Broadway:Can You Forgive Her?(Vineyard Theater),Intimacy(New Group),Card and Gift(Clubbed Thumb),On The Verge(Attic).  Regional:Actually, The Wolves, The Siegel, Thomas and Sally, 4,000 Miles,You Will Remember Me,Visitors,Twelfth Night.  TV/Film:Phil Spector(HBO),The Affair(Showtime),Knife Fight,Two-Bit Waltz,Pitching Tents. 






Christina Liang (Planchet): Christina is thrilled to be working on "Three Musketeers 1941"! Her credits include "Quack" (Alley Theatre), "Issei, He Say" (NJ Rep), "In The Line" (Project Y Theatre), "A Christmas Carol" (ACT), "Ah, Wilderness" (ACT), "Love and Information" (ACT). MFA in acting from A.C.T. and BA in Individualized Studies from N.Y.U.  






Helen Farmer (Milady) is an actor, improviser, teacher and mother. Originally Canadian, now based in Jersey City. Regional theater includes: Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey, Crossroads Theatre, Dorset Theatre, Ensemble Studio Theatre, Second City Toronto and WIT festival 2016. She holds an MFA from Rutgers and is a trained Alexander technique teacher.  






Joleen Wilkinson (Treville) is very excited to be a part of the WIT Festival!  Joleen first met Megan Monaghan Rivas at Salt Lake Acting Company’s Playwrights Lab, where she appeared as Laura in Kate Tarker’s Laura and the Sea.  Joleen later went on to develop the role of Laura at the Eugene O’Neil Theater Conference.   Joleen has worked in play development with numerous companies, including The Lark, New Dramatists, and NYU’s Department of Dramatic Writing where she is an actor in Suzan Lori Parks’ class, Loving the Living Playwright.  NYC credits include David Parr's Mimi at the 44th Parallel,  Joe Tracz's Song for a Future Generation and Bea Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table.  Film and TV credits include The Path and feature Eleanor, which premiered at the Manhattan Film Festival this spring. 



Ashley Bufkin (Aramis) is a Las Vegas native and recent MFA graduate from Rutgers University. She’s thrilled to be working along side Project Y for their 2nd Annual WIT Festival! Previous credits: In the Next Room (or the Vibrator Play) (Gulfshore Playhouse); Pride and Prejudice (Pittsburgh Public Theater); A Doll’s House Part Two (Barrington Stage Co); Julius Caesar (Shakespeare’s Globe); Mason Gross School of the Arts – An Octoroon, (Hera)kles, Julius Caesar, A Dream Play, Scarecrow." 





Valentino Musumeci (Ensemble) is thrilled to be a part of the WIT 2019 season! He is currently working towards his BFA in acting at Carnegie Mellon University. Professional work in TV/Film include roles in “Boardwalk Empire,” “Daredevil,” and “Birdman.” He thanks the cast and crew for this incredible opportunity and experience! 






Essence Stiggers (Dartagnan): Is a rising Acting junior at Carnegie Mellon University. She is thrilled to be returning to Project Y for the Women in Theatre Festival. Originally from Minneapolis, she is fortunate to have worked at a number of Theatre’s around the Twin Cities including: Children’s Theatre Company, Mixed Blood, The Illusion, Phoenix, Stepping Stone and Stages Theatre. Notable performances include: I and You, The Buccaneers, Lizzie Bright and the Buckminster Boy, For Colored Girls, Good ‘n Plenty, and Truth/Dare. She thanks her parents, as they are her biggest cheerleaders. 




Javan Nelson (Rochefort) has previously worked with: Bushwick Starr, Target Margin Theater, Fresh Ground Pepper, E.S.T., The Civilians, and En Garde Arts, among others. He is the creator/facilitator of Hook & Eye's Spoolers devising program. Training from SITI Co. and Frantic Assembly, BFA from the Univ. of Arizona. 






Carlotta Summers (Fight Director) is an award winning Actress, Filmmaker, and Fight Choreographer currently living in NYC. A graduate of NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts, a few of her film and television credits include the role of Saltire in Choice Film’s "Big Dogs,” & Supporting Role in "Lupe," which premiered at the Cinequest Film Festival March 2019. She is CEO of her own production company Wild Cat Film. Her first short film “Butterflies” won Best Short Film and Best Actress for a short film at its world premiere at the Philadelphia Independent Film Festival as well as Best Screenplay at Kew Gardens Festival of Cinema. As a filmmaker and actor, Carlotta has also received critical acclaim from major online publications including Broadway World, Film Threat, and the Star Democrat. Some of her more notable Fight Choreography credits include: assisting with fight direction for the Broadway production, Therese Raquin with Keira Knightley and Matt Ryan; serving as fight director for the Inferno Theater Company’s Adventurers Club; fight directing an all female production of Hamlet (Hvmlet); and assisting with choreography for Les Pêcheurs de Perles at the Metropolitan Opera. 



Lauren Blanks (Stage Manager) is a rising third-year studying stage management at NYU Tisch Department of Drama in the Production & Design Studio. She’s working to earn her BFA in Drama with a Minor in Producing for Film & Television in May 2021. She hails from Minneapolis, Minnesota & she’s a Capricorn.  







OLIVIA VAUGHN HERN (Costume Designer) is a costume & puppet designer and visual artist. She has done work at Ars Nova, Williamstown Theatre Festival, (le) poisson rouge, NYU Steinhart, the Chain Theater, with Rebis Immersive, and with the Pigpen Theatre Company.She can also be seen in an original devised piece this summer in a repeat performance at the Prague Quadrennial for Performance and Space Design. She received her BFA from the Carnegie Mellon School of Drama. She likes to make something out of nothing.; @oliviavhern 



YIRAN ZHANG (Sound Designer)  is a freelance sound designer and engineer. She just moved to NYC last fall and is excited to be part of the team of the Women in Theatre Festival and Three Musketeers 1941. Yiran continues applying her sound creation ability in the fields of theatre production, installation art and TV/film post-production. She enjoys creating sound contents and soundscapes for different scenarios and loves exploring how the sound influences people’s minds. She has an MFA in sound design from the School of Drama at Carnegie Mellon. Know more about Yiran and join her sound adventure at  



Cole Merrell (Assistant to the Director) is currently poised to resume his studies at Middlebury College after a brief, two-year, Central American hiatus. While he's very grateful to be working in the arts with all these talented souls, his true dream to someday establish himself as a paid influencer on Instagram. Download Postmates! #ad You can also find his writing on


A commissioned World Premiere by Amina Henry
Directed by Michole Biancosino
Featuring Leon Schwendener, Chelsea Melone, Saran Bakari, Rachel Evans, Ava Yaghmaie, Veronica Cooper and Kyle Decker
Stage Manager: Kendra Lee
Sound Designer: Amit Prakash
Costume Designer: Jake Poser
Lighting Designer: Hallie Zieselman
Fight Director: Mike Rossmy


You know the old story: A beautiful princess (whats her name?) is pricked by a spindle and cursed to sleep until awakened by the kiss of a prince (of course). This new take on a classic fairytale features a prince who prefers baking to waking sleeping beauties and a princess who likes fighting with swords rather than sitting pretty. Prince Rocky and his sister, Princess Jewel, set out on a quest to save the sleeping Princess Rosamond together. Along the way they battle fire birds, trick a troll and meet other famous fairytale siblings. In Amina Henrys feminist remaking of Sleeping Beauty, the power of love is tested and the bonds of friendship prove stronger than magic. With music, dancing, and singing. For all ages - but especially for 6-13 year olds and their families.


Tickets: $20 General Admission

**Please note every person over 2 years old must have a paid ticket. Adults must purchase a ticket.**


June 22-30th Saturdays and Sundays 12pm & 3pm 
(only 1 show on Sunday, June 30th at 12pm)


Amina Henry (Playwright) is a Brooklyn-based playwright and educator. Productions, among others, include: Hunter John and Jane at JACK, Ducklings at JACK, The Animals at JACK, Happily Ever at Brooklyn College, An American Family Takes a Lover at Theater for the New City, Water produced by Drama of Works, Cindy produced by Project Y Theater, and Bully at MirrorBox Theatre, Interrobang Theater, Clubbed Thumb and SUNY Purchase. She is currently working on commissions from The New Group, and HERO Theater. Her work has been developed by, produced and/or presented at: The New Group, The Flea, Ars Nova, Clubbed Thumb, Page 73, National Black Theater, Barefoot Theater, Little Theater at Dixon Place, HERE Arts Center, Oregon Shakespeare Festival (Ashland, OR), Kitchen Dog Theater (Dallas, TX), and Texas State University, among other theaters and venues. She has been a participant in Clubbed Thumb's Early Career Writers group, Ars Nova’s 2017-2018 PlayGroup and Page 73’s Interstate 73 writers group and is a New George's Affiliate Artist. She was a 2017-2018 recipient of a Lower Manhattan Cultural Council (LMCC) Space Grant and a 2018 Dixon Place Space Residency. Upcoming: New Light Theater's production of The Great Novel, June 2019 at The Flea. She has an MFA in Playwriting from Brooklyn College, is an adjunct lecturer at Brooklyn College and is a teaching artist with the Teachers & Writers Collaborative and the Hunts Point Alliance for Children. For up-to-date information, go to



Veronica Cooper (Queen) is an actor and writer. She is thrilled to be participating in WITfest for the 3rd time and a proud supporter of the festival's mission. Previous work with Primary Stages, Athena Theatre, id Theater, Amios, Inviolet, Nora's Playhouse, Stable Cable Lab Co, Skeleton Rep, and Wolfbane Productions. In addition to her theater projects, Veronica's films have screened at over a dozen film festivals and programs such as the Florida Film Festival, Northside, Big Apple, and kinda sorta at SXSW. For more updates on her work visit



Kyle Decker (King) A 2018 graduate of Carnegie Mellon University's BFA Musical Theater Program, Kyle has appeared as a guest star on NBC's Law and Order: SVU and CBS's FBI. Kyle is overjoyed to be appearing in Sleeping Beauty and can't wait to share this fun and inspiring message with the audience!



Chelsea Melone (Rosamond) moved to Manhattan when she was 12 but will always be a Jersey girl at heart. Off-Broadway: “Vinegar Tom” and “Pentecost” with PTP/NYC at Atlantic Stage 2. “Roadkill” at FringeNYC. BA: Middlebury College. Thank you to Project Y Theatre Co and Andrew Smith.



Leon Schwendener (Rocky) is a graduate of Carnegie Mellon University. He is incredibly grateful for the chance to perform with Project Y Theater and to be apart of such a great cast. He is based in NYC.



Rachel E. Evans (Fairy Godmother Iris) is an actress, writer and educator. She has performed in New York with the Mirror Repertory Company, Project Rushmore, Urban Stages, Irondale Theatre, Intar Theater and Clubbed Thumb. Her one-woman show, Jew Wish, premiered in the NY Fringe Festival and her plays and monologues have been performed with Primary Stages, Irondale and Elevator Up Theatre Company.  She has performed improv and sketch comedy at the PIT and in bars around the city and has read a sci-fi audiobook with Audible. BA in Drama and English, Tufts University, MA in Applied Theatre, CUNY.



Ava Yaghmaie (Fairy Godmother Lily) a proud Iranian-American woman, could not be more excited to bring this feminist-inspired new point of view to a classic fairytale. She is an incoming senior studying at the Carnegie Mellon School of Drama and comes to Project Y Theatre grateful for the opportunity to work with this company. Here’s to broadening the opportunities for women in the entertainment industry!



Kendra Lee (Stage Manager) is thrilled to take part in the WIT Festival for the second year in a row. Past stage managing credits include Amina Henry's CINDY at the WIT Festival in 2018 and Amina Henry’s DUCKINGS at JACK in Brooklyn in 2017. Kendra earned her BFA in Dramaturgy from Carnegie Mellon, where she served as dramaturg on LULU and HOW TO SUCCEED IN BUSINESS WITHOUT REALLY TRYING.



Amit Prakash (Sound Designer) is a Sound Designer who has worked on numerous productions for Project Y since its inception.  He has designed Lion in the Streets, Zastrozzi: The Master of Discipline, One Flea Spare, The Crackwalker, Either/Or (NY Fringe), In the Boom Boom Room, Thérèse Raquin Desire, Baby Boom (New Orleans Fringe Festival), FUBAR (59E59 Theaters), and The Revival (The Lion at Theater Row), for which he has received a NYIT Award nomination for outstanding sound design.



Hallie Zieselman (Lighting Designer) is delighted to return for her 3rd season with WiT. Hallie is also a Scenic/Lighting Designer as well as Production & Company Manager for PTP/NYC, and Production Designer for the Middlebury College Theatre Department. She holds a double BA from Brown University and an MFA from Northwestern University. She is also a member of United Scenic Artists Local 829.



Jake Poser (Costume Designer) is a costumer whose work has been seen in Broadway and Off-Broadway venues, as well as in regional theaters. Recent design work has included The Odd Couple at New London Barn Playhouse, and Five Women Wearing the Same Dress at Stella Adler in New York. Jake has recently assisted Lortel Award-winning designer Dede Ayite on The Rolling Stone at Lincoln Center and Toni Stone at Roundabout Theatre. He's also worked as an assistant on Hamilton, Mean Girls, and Frozen. Jake holds a BFA from Carnegie Mellon University. He grew up in Boca Raton, Fla. where he attended Alexander W. Dryfoos School of the Arts.



Becca Berlind (Assistant Stage Manager) is a rising Junior at Middlebury College, studying Theatre and Spanish. She will be studying acting in Barcelona next fall. Becca has been engaged in the arts her whole life, and is drawn to storytelling of all kinds. She is thrilled to be working with Project Y this summer!


Created and directed by Ilana Becker


Argument Sessions weaves verbatim US Supreme Court argument transcripts with variety theatre, stripping away the austerity of the court room and inviting the audience to party directly with our judicial process. This transcript-meets-variety music theatre event places audiences in the middle of our country’s most important legal battles.


June 7, 11, & 19 at 7:30pm


Ilana Becker is a director and producer specializing in new play and musical development, community-driven projects, and arts education. She is a member of The WP Theater Producers Lab, The Civilians’ R&D Group, Lincoln Center Theater Directors Lab, DirectorsLabChicago, Fresh Ground Pepper’s PlayGroup, a Playwrights Horizons Robert Moss Directing Fellow, and an Emerging Leader of NY Arts Fellow. As a theatre producer and manager, Ilana has led community-driven projects throughout NYC and has worked with companies such as Lincoln Center Education, All For One Theater, and Jewish Plays Project. Ilana returns to New York after a year as Associate Artistic Director and Interim Artistic Director of Company of Fools/Sun Valley Center for the Arts.


Adaptations of Calimachus by Eliza Bent, Suzanne Bradbeer, Antu Yacob, Laura Pittenger, Kaaron Briscoe, and Kelley Nicole Girod


Aimed at reclaiming and celebrating the history of women in theatre, these plays are commissioned adaptations of a play by the first woman playwright, 10th century abbess, Hrosthwitha of Gandersham. This is part of a 5 year project to adapt all 6 of these historical plays and bring more awareness to this unknown female writer who deserves a place in theatre history.


June 16 at 7:30pm


Eliza Bent is a playwright and performer based in Brooklyn, NY. Bent’s plays have been developed and presented in productions, readings, and workshops at the Abrons Arts Center, JACK, Clubbed Thumb, the Atlantic, the Bushwick Starr and New York Theatre Workshop Next Door. Residencies: SPACE on Ryder Farm, New Georges Audrey Residency, Target Margin Institute Fellow, MacDowell Colony Fellow, inaugural Humanities Initiative Artist in Residence at the University of Scranton for 2018-19. Awards/Citations: LMCC Work Space 18/19, Critics Pick for Toilet Fire, 2014 Payne Award for Outstanding Theatrical Event, LMCC process grant. Alum: SPACE on Ryder Farm “Working Farm,” Project Y Playwright’s Group, TerraNova’s Groundbreakers group, New Georges affiliated artist. Bent is a former senior editor at American Theatre magazine, a frequent guest artist at the Great Plains Theatre Conference, and an adjunct lecturer in creative writing at Brooklyn College where she received an MFA in playwriting.



Suzanne Bradbeer. Productions include: Confederates (TheatreWorks – Silicon Valley, Kilroy’s Honorable Mention); The God Game (Pulitzer nomination, Gulfshore Playhouse/Capital Rep co-premiere); Naked Influence (Capital Rep). Suzanne is a regular moderator at the Actors Studio Playwright/Director Workshop; a member of the EST Playwrights Unit, the 2018 – 2019 Project Y Playwrights Group and the Dramatists Guild.





Antu Yacob was born in Dire Dawa, Ethiopia and raised in San Francisco and Minnesota. She received her MFA in Acting from Mason Gross School of the Arts at Rutgers University. Her solo show In the Gray was featured in the 2017 United Solo Theatre Festival in New York, and premiered in Project Y Theatre’s inaugural Women in Theater Festival. Her play Mourning Sun featured in the 2016 Kampala International Theatre Festival in Uganda and had its 2015 world premiere at Theatre 167 in NYC. Antu’s two-woman play The Firsts, premiered in Project Y Theatre’s 2013 New York New Playwrights Festival.  Her work has been featured in readings at the inaugural NowAfrica Playwrights Festival at Tisch-NYU, Crossroads Theatre’s CommonGround Festival, CoLAB Arts theOrphanage series and Project Y Theatre’s Racey Plays Series.   As an actor, she was last seen onstage in the regional premiere of The Assignment at Luna Stage. Other theater credits include Risen from the Dough (Sam French OOB Short Play Festival-Winner) Mourning Sun (KITF and Theatre 167), In the Continuum original national tour (Primary Stages), Stepping out of the River at Dawn, Pilgrims Musa and Sheri in the New World and A Jew on Ethiopia Street (Mixed Blood Theatre), Holiday Jubilee (Crossroads Theatre), Crowns (The Theater Project), The House That Crack Built (Pillsbury House Theatre) and No Longer at Ease (Pangea World Theater). Her film & television credits include Daredevil, Night Comes On, Gypsy, Law & Order: SVU, Conjure, Eminent Domain, and Walking in Circles. She is the recipient of The Playwriting Collective’s 2018 Ball Grant. She teaches Acting at Baruch College and Rutgers University.



Laura Pittenger is an NYC-based playwright and director whose work has been published by YouthPLAYS (Pride and Prejudice Abridged) and Smith & Kraus (105 Ten-Minute Plays for Study and Performance).  Currently, Laura is working with New Sanctuary Coalition and Robert Choiniere to create interview-based theater with immigrants living in New York City. Laura is also an inaugural Playwriting Fellow at the Sheen Center for her full-length play The Honor of Your Presence.  Her original plays have been produced at FringeNYC (The HVAC Plays); The Sheen Center Theater Festival (The Drill); The Gallery Players (Brooklyn, NY; Thou Shalt Not), GI60's International One-Minute Theatre Festival (with co-writer Meron Langsner), and Ball State University (Daughters of Trinity: Women of the Manhattan Project, with Jennifer Blackmer).  Laura's plays have received workshops with 3V TheatreOne Bird Productions, Alaska's Last Frontier Theatre Conference, the Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival and The Playwrights' Center. Selected directing work includes productions and workshops at The Tank (NYC premiere of Jason Hall's thriller Third Floor), Project Y (Parity Plays), Athena Theatre and Turn to Flesh ProductionsBall State University graduate, Dramatists Guild member.



Kaaron Briscoe is a New Orleans native with an MFA from ART/MXAT/IATT at Harvard University. She is a current member of Project Y's Playwriting Group. She has been a teaching artist for over a decade and enjoys collaborating with young people. Her work has been seen as part of the Brooklyn Generator and Inviolet’s Second Mondays. Kaaron was a 2015 fellow for Target Margin Theatre’s Institute for Collaborative Theatre Making, and is a member of the 52nd Street Project.





Kelley Nicole Girod is the founder and Executive Producing Director of OBIE Award winning, The Fire This Time Festival (NYC) which will make its ten year anniversary in 2019. She is a 2008 graduate of Columbia's MFA playwriting program where she was a Stein and Liberace Fellow, as well as a John Golden Fellow. She was named Person of the Year for her work on The Fire This Time Festival, and is a part of the Indie Theatre Hall of Fame. As a producer her credits include Israela Margalit's Get Me A Guy, and Night Blooming Jasmine (both at Horse Trade Theater); Louisiana Mon Amour (Women Center Stage at Culture Project); Thais Francis's Outcry (Horse Trade Theater, Jack). A native of Louisiana, Kelley's writing reflects the rich Cajun/Creole world that she grew up in, and include This Stretch of Montpelier (nominated for 7 2018 Planet Connections Theatre Festivity Awards including outstanding new play), Ambrosia (HorseTrade Theater), Poetics of the Creative Process (The Fire This Time Festival, Season 1), Parabolas, Rote (produced in Harlem 9's 48hrs in Harlem), Straight on til Morning( reading in Classical Theatre of Harlem's Future Classics), Lessons of the Trash Gang(Baton Rouge Little Theatre), and A Good Neighbor (commissioned by Spark+Echo). She was recently offered a Launch New Play Commission by Atlantic Theater Company. She is currently Programming Associate at The Sheen Center for Thought and Culture in NYC. She is most proud of being a wife, and mother to two beautiful daughters, Penelope Evelyn and Noelle Anamaria.



Stephanie Miller (Assistant Producer, Hrosthwitha Project) is a senior at Middlebury College, double majoring in Neuroscience and Theatre with a focus in directing. Directing credits at Middlebury include LungsBeyond the Vagina [Monologues], and The Violet Sisters. Last summer, Stephanie worked as an ASM with PTP/NYC, for The Possibilities.


Written by Dana Jacks
Directed by Michael Padden


On June 11, 2011, I was walking in Prospect Park when a speeding bicylist hit me. I suffered a Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) and for three weeks I was a patient at Kings County Hospital in Brooklyn where my doctors, family and friends waited to see if there was permanent damage.  I wondered too.  My relationship to my body and mind was suddenly altered.  The name of the piece refers to the bracelet I wore in the hospital - FALL RISK.  Fall Risk is about the risks we take very day living our lives and the people who show up when we need them the most.


June 12 at 7:30pm


Dana Jacks (Writer, Performer) is a native Northern Californian (born and raised in Sacramento) who has worked in New York theater, film and television. Dana was in the Off Broadway production of Our Town at the Barrow Street Theatre and danced in a pink jumpsuit in Here Lies Love at The Public Theater. Recently, she was in Lia Romeo’s Connected at 59E59 (Project Y Theatre) and Hungry at The Tank (Skeleton Rep). You can see her on Netflix in The Incredible Jessica James. She has written and shared stories for Project Y Theater, The Tank, and The Moth. Thank you for being here and sharing this story with me. Deepest thanks to Project Y and everyone involved with WIT for this opportunity.


Written and Directed by Sheila Bandyopadhyay


Set in the near distant future on an environmentally ravaged earth, rise/fall reinvents the classic tale of Leda and the Swan as a living meditation on art, celebrity culture and the universal human need for connection. Rise/Fall is a dystopian art rock fantasy combining movement, music, text and media.


June 26 at 7:30pm


Sheila Bandyopadhyay is a director, movement specialist and teaching artist who specializes in physical theater, devised work, and Shakespeare. Sheila has directed and created shows featured at the West End Theater, the 72nd St Theater Lab, The Brick, the Boston Center for the Arts, and the Minneapolis and Montreal Fringe Festivals. She is Head of Movement at the American Academy of Dramatic Arts, where she teaches, coaches, and directs. She has served as a movement director for productions with the Humanist Project, AADA, NYU Gallatin, and FSU/Asolo. Performance credits include work with the New England Shakespeare Festival, Shakespeare East, Shakespeare & Company, and the Humanist Project among others. Currently, Sheila is co-directing a new one-man show, Full Contact, by Ariel Estrada at The Tank. IG: @sheilabnyc


A reading of the play by Gina Femia


In the wake of Hurricane Sandy, Pam comes home to Brooklyn to attend her fathers funeral. When she arrives, she is greeted by an angry sister, a dilapidated house and a past that she cant escape. Despite all of her best intentions, the conversation quickly turns tense and the two sisters are forced to deal with all that they have let slip away, all the words that have been left unsaid for years. The Violet Sisters is a play about forgiving when you cannot bring yourself to forget.


June 23 at 7:30pm


FREE event. DONATIONS appreciated.


Gina Femia has written 32 full-length plays which include ALLOND(R)A (Winner: Leah Ryan Prize, Runner-up: Yale Drama Prize), We Are a Masterpiece (Winner: The Doric Wilson Award), The Mermaids' Parade (Semifinalist, The Relentless Award), Annie and the Fat Man (Honorable Mention, The Kilroys), For The Love Of (Theatre of NOTE, Original Works Publishing), and The Violet Sisters (Great Plains Theatre Conference). She is the 2019 Writer-in-Residence with Spicy Witch Productions, a current member of Page 73's Interstate 73 and an Alum of EST Youngblood, Pipeline Theatre’s PlayLab, and New Georges' Audrey Residency. Gina has received residencies with Page 73, Powerhouse, NTI at the O’Neill, SPACE on Ryder Farm, and Fresh Ground Pepper.


Created by The Bellwether Project, Gillian Beth Durkee, Dani Joseph
Written by Gillian Beth Durkee
Directed by Caroline Sprague
Produced by Jack Dentinger and Timiki Salinas


Mother. A word that holds a different meaning for each of us, and yet one to which we each have some sort of connection. Join me for ONE NIGHT ONLY as I guide you through a history of motherhood in a presentation that can only be described as comprehensive, well-researched, and not-once-derailed-by-personal-issues-with-my-own-mother-of-which-there-are-NONE. I can’t wait to see you there!


June 13 at 7:30pm


Amanda Centeno (Lead Performer) actor-, let’s get coffee & collaborate!









Gillian Beth Durkee (Creator/Writer) is a Brooklyn-based playwright/screenwriter and a member of Youngblood. She has worked with EST, The Tank, Current Harbor, Sam French OOB, In the Water, and Tiny Rhino. Gillian writes for the web series Adulting with Jane. MFA: Carnegie Mellon.







Dani Joseph (Creator/Dramaturg) is a dramaturg and producer specializing in new works, including new musicals. She facilitates two writer's intensives a week and consults with young artists about their careers. In her free time, she serves as the Literary Managers and Dramaturgs of the Americas Acting VP of Membership.






Caroline Sprague (Director) is thrilled to be joining Project Y's Women in Theatre Festival as the director of The [in]Complete History of Motherhood. She is an undergraduate at Brown University, pursuing a degree in American Studies. In her spare time, Caroline can be found tutoring, listening to Hadestown, and thinking about catharsis.






Nikki "Nix" LoPinto (Costume Designer) is born, raised, and based in NYC. She delights in collaborating as a founding company member of the Bellwether Project to create a visual language that suits the needs of the particular story they choose to tell.







The Bellwether Project is a collective of artists that came together in 2015 at Carnegie Mellon University with the goal of exploring socially relevant art in ensemble-based ways and engaging with history to combat erasure. Most recently they’ve produced Dr. Rees Ziti’s Pageant For A Better Future at Ars Nova’s ANT Fest and their web-series, (in)alienable, available on YouTube. Ultimately, the company sets out to create a culture of empathy and understanding through personal, intersectional storytelling.


Crashbox Theatre presents Sensitive to Bite by Eljon Wardally


Set in a bodega on the Lower East Side of NY, a budding feminist and her conservative husband struggle to sacrifice remnants of their past in Syria for the sake of their uncertain future in the US.


June 18 at 7:30pm


Eljon Wardally (Playwright) is a Playwright and Screenwriter born in New York with Grenadian roots. Plays include: Blooming In Dry Season (O'Neill National Playwrights Conference Finalist), By A Thread (Sundance MENA Theatre Lab Semi-Finalist), Big Black Balloon (O'Neill National Playwrights Conference Finalist), Bishop (O'Neill National Playwrights Conference Semi-Finalist, Kennedy Center Finalist) The Gift (The Network One Act Festival Semi-Finalist), Home Sweet Home (The Strawberry Festival Semi Finalist), Docket 32357 (New Works By Young Women Finalist). Eljon received her MFA in Playwriting from Fordham University.



Crashbox Theater
Founded in 2010, Crashbox has produced, commissioned and served in the development of new plays by emerging and established writers, holding playwrights as the heartbeat of our community. Our programming is focused on providing individualized resources and collaborative opportunities for each voice to grow in a safe and inclusive environment.




Playwright Sponsorship
Inspired by feedback from our collaborators, Crashbox created The Playwright Sponsorship aiming to bridge the gap that exists between a public reading and full production. Each year, Crashbox sponsors a play that has received a reading with us and dedicate resources aimed at curating a program to fit that playwright’s individual needs to further develop and promote the script.




MERIDITH JONES (artistic director) is a Crashbox founding member and the current Artistic Director. She is graduate of Atlantic Acting School Conservatory and has been proudly producing and performing in DIY theater for over ten years. Stage credits include Fool For Love (May, dir Mac Welch), The House of Yes (Jackie, dir Amber Malott), Killer Joe (Dotty, dir Leroy Clark), A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Hermia, dir Leroy Clark), Reckless (Doctor 6, dir Paul Urcioli) and The Liddy Plays (Mother, dir Sharone Halevy). Film credits include Gracie Rose (dir. Jason Bailey), Lady Cop (dir. Erik Christopher Lopez), Karl & Bernie (dir Jason Bailey) and The Gift (dir. Svet Doytchinov). You can also hear her voice in the podcast series, The Adventures of Karl & Bernie and The Adventure Hour with Captain Punishment (Me & B Productions). In addition to performance she has served as a Props Designer and Stage Manager for several productions in the Midwest and NYC. She was an ensemble member and served as the President of the Board of Directors for the Kansas based company Theater On Consignment and received a Mary Jane Teal Theater Award for Excellence in the Kansas Theater Community.



BRITTANY CROWELL (managing director) is a theater artist and administrator and the Managing Director of Crashbox Theater.   She is also currently the Production Manager at Third Rail Projects, managing their long-running Then She Fell.  Other projects with Third Rail Projects include: Confection, Behind the City, The Grand Paradise, and Midnight Madness.  Previously, Brittany worked as the Management Coordinator for the Bucks County Playhouse during their 2012 revitalization season and as an executive assistant to Broadway producer, Jill Furman.  She freelances as a producer, production manager, and stage manager.


Written by Stephanie Swirsky
Directed by Tasha Gordon-Solmon


In 2018, Rachel is worried that Jared Kushner is making the world more dangerous for Jews because his public image embodies the worst of Jewish stereotypes: he’s wealthy, avaricious, and ominously wields world power behind the scenes. She devises a plan to go back in time to 1999, hook up with teenager-Jared, and break his penis, preventing him from marrying Ivanka – saving the reputation of Jews around the world.


June 20 at 7:30pm


$10 suggested donation.
Purchase ahead of time to guarantee a seat or show up at the door.


Stephanie Swirsky (Playwright) writes about illness, death, grieving, and cultural identity with humor, levity, and a sense of romantic adventure. Her plays have been developed at The Brick, The Flea, Pasadena Playhouse, Theatricum Botanicum, and WordBRIDGE, among others. She is a CubaOneLiterary Fellow, recipient of the Israel Baran Award, and under commission with the Iron Tongues Project between the University of Southern California and the Adam Mickiewicz Institute in Poland. Stephanie is active with Let Us Work, an advocacy group that aims to combat and end sexual harassment in theater. Originally from the suburbs of New Jersey, Stephanie currently lives in NYC, and received her BA from NYU and MFA in Dramatic Writing from USC.



Tasha Gordon-Solmon (Director) has directed and developed new plays at Dixon Place, EST, The Tank, The Flea, INTAR, The Brick, Project Y, Pipeline Theatre, InViolet, Brooklyn Museum, New York Clown Festival, Fire This Time Festival, New York Fringe Festival, Columbia University, NYU, Studio Tisch, Brooklyn Generator, Crashbox Theater Company, The Cell, The Claque, Sound Bites at Signature Theater, and the Young Playwrights Festival at the O’Neill. As a playwright, Tasha’s work has been seen at the Humana Festival of New American Plays, Clubbed Thumb, New Georges, Ars Nova, AFO, Northern Stage, and Sun Valley Center for the Arts. Tasha is Director of New Work at Project Y Theater Company, the recipient of a Dramatist Guild Fellowship and a Puffin Foundation Grant, a VCCA Fellow, a New Georges Affiliated Artist, and a member of the BMI Advanced Workshop and Directors Lab West.


Womxn: Future Tense
Created by Colby Rossmassler
Directed by Acadia Barrengos


As young women, we grow up hoping to pursue our dreams. Impressionable as we discover who we are and how we will find our place in society. What is it to be taught what a woman should be through an inherently patriarchal lens? Around the world, young women’s voices highlight unique perspectives on formative and diverse experiences. Though society is advancing in many ways, our young women remain acutely aware of the shared and individual challenges we face in building our lives. Our movement stemmed from poetry and interviews that reflect current stories of young women. In this age of reclamation, we still fear not knowing when we’ll be granted agency over our bodies. We tell our stories now using our bodies, which, in many ways, have dictated our individual narratives. Envisioned by Colby Rossmassler (17), and brought to life by Acadia Barrengos (18).


June 22nd at 12pm**


**Please note this show is on a double bill with Sleeping Beauty


Colby Rossmassler (creator) will be a senior at The Putney School in southern Vermont in the fall. She’s been dancing for 7 years and has recently begun to create her own pieces of choreography in the past few years. She recently sang the part of Belinda for a performance of Dido and Aeneas. She spent four months studying in Mexico which led her to become fluent in Spanish, and have a great interest in immigration and its impacts. She’s spent intensive two week periods studying topics of her own interest at her high school, some of which have included going en pointe, speaking only Spanish for a week, and writing poetry from the experiences of young women in the performance art industry. Colby is thrilled to be part of the Women in Theatre Festival this summer, and looking forward to meeting many incredible people. Special thanks to Acadia, Andrew and Michael for making it all happen!



Acadia Barrengos (director) is a rising second year at the University of North Carolina School of the Arts getting her B.F.A in Directing. Some of her most recent credits include directing Constellations, Assistant Directing The Hairy Ape at School of the Arts and performing as Charity in Sweet Charity. She is currently Assistant Directing Mary Page Marlowe (Letts) with Apron Theatre Company and is directing Stupid F*cking Bird in San Francisco with Gatehouse Theatre Company in August. Acadia is so excited to have worked with these wonderful people and been introduced to the incredible Women in Theatre Festival. Huge thanks to Colby for bringing me on to this project and Andrew and Michole for helping bring it all to fruition.


Su 6/2

M 6/3

Tu 6/4

W 6/5

Th 6/6

F 6/7

Su 6/9

M 6/10

Tu 6/11

W 6/12

7:30 PM

Fall Risk

F 6/14

Sa 6/15

M 6/17

Tu 6/18

7:30 PM


W 6/19

Th 6/20

F 6/21

Su 6/23

M 6/24

Tu 6/25

W 6/26

7:30 PM


Th 6/27

F 6/28

Su 6/30

12:00 PM

Sleeping Beauty


The Hrotsvitha Project 2019

(Don't know how to pronounce it? That's okay. Neither do most of us.)

Big Feathery Hats and Moral Purity: An Interview with Megan Monaghan Rivas

In which I pretend to know things about 17th Century France and awkwardly smile through loud sound effects.

On Parity, Project Y, and Emilia Clarke: An Interview With Michole Biancosino

This Saturday, between a dress rehearsal, a coffee run, and a stress-inducing email chain, I sat down with Michole Biancosino,…


Women In Theatre Festival Staff

Producers: Michole Biancosino and Andrew William Smith
Graphic Designer: Christopher G. Ulloth
Marketing Manager: Joe Basile
Festival Lighting Designer: Hallie Zieselman
Assistant to the Producers: Rebecca Berlind
Assistant Producer, The Hrosthwitha Project: Stephanie Miller
Front of House: Rebecca Berlind, Natalie Nankervis and Stephanie Miller
Production Assistant: Cole Merrell

Project Y is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization and community of artists, designers, and playwrights devoted to developing new work through staged readings, online video projects, workshop productions, and fully produced world premieres, allowing new and emerging voices to be part of the theatrical conversation.

Founded in Washington, D.C. in 1999, Project Y was formed with one simple impulse – focusing on one project at a time and allowing the play’s needs inform all creative and producing choices.

Celebrating a 15 years producing history in both Washington, D.C. and New York City, Project Y has an unwavering presence in the New York Off-Off Broadway community and has been nominated for nine Innovative Theater Awards. Project Y has been the recipient of grants from NYSCA, ART/NY, The Nancy Quinn Fund, and the humanitarian Puffin Foundation.

Performance space for this production was subsidized by the A.R.T./New York Theatres Rental Subsidy Fund, a program of the Alliance of Resident Theatres/New York (A.R.T./New York).

This production is supported, in part, by The Nancy Quinn Fund, a program of the Alliance of Resident Theatres/New York (A.R.T./New York).

This production is made possible in part by the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Cuomo and the New York State Legislature.

This program is supported, in part, by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council.

Public relations provided by Emily Owens PR.

Three Musketeers 1941 is registered with the New York Innovative Theatre awards. The IT Awards were organized to bring recognition to the great work being done in Off-Off-Broadway and help create a community base for the estimated 40,000 artists working in the Off-Off-Broadway venue. Click the button below to cast your vote for Three Musketeers 1941.

New York IT Awards