LAByrinth’s 2020 Barn Series Set for January 6-12

LAByrinth Theater Company (John Ortiz, Artistic Director; Aaron Roman Weiner, Associate Artistic Director) announces the selections for their 20th Annual Barn Series, the award-winning company’s developmental play reading series. This year’s series features seven new plays written and directed by LAB company members and friends. All readings are free and open to the public, and run from January 6-12, 2020 at Cherry Lane Theatre (38 Commerce Street, between Barrow and Bedford), where LAByrinth is the Company in Residence. Showtime is 7pm.

The Barn Series continues LAByrinth’s tradition of creating, developing, and producing the work of its company members. Currently enjoying an extended, critically-lauded co-production at Atlantic Theater Company through January 5, Stephen Adly Guirgis’s Halfway Bitches Go Straight to Heaven began as part of the 2019 edition of The Barn Series and was selected to receive a full production from the reading.

“We’re thrilled to announce the lineup for our 20th (20th!) Annual Barn Series,” says Artistic Director John Ortiz. “We’re all very excited to see what will emerge from this year’s festival. The lineup features longtime LAB members, LAB friends like Seth Zvi Rosenfeld, and for our 20th Barn, something new: we sent nine LAB writers to spend time with employees working the night shift for a medical supply company in Indiana. This exciting work in progress, entitled Night Shift, humanizes the red/blue divide, and brings the rural assembly line to the West Village.”

Joining the bill alongside Night Shift on the final evening of the festival is a presentation by LAB’s Intensive Ensemble. This selection of 12-minute plays emerges from a series of workshops and new play development by LAB company members and guest artists, generously hosted this past summer by Brooklyn College with the support of New York City’s Coalition of Theatres of Color Initiative. Allowing emerging artists to push boundaries and create their own work through collaborative effort, the Intensive Ensemble Presentation concludes The Barn Series by exemplifying the creative drive and ensemble spirit that motivates all of LAB’s work.

LAB’s 2020 summer production at Cherry Lane will be a fully-staged World Premiere of one of the works presented in this Barn Series, the title of which will be announced in March.

For complete Barn Series information, visit

Monday Jan. 6th: Islands of Contentment by Dipti Bramhandkar

Tuesday Jan. 7th: Without by Michael Puzzo

Wednesday Jan. 8th: Bees & Honey by Guadalís Del Carmen

Thursday Jan. 9th: 11.05.08: POST-RACIAL AMERICA DAY 1 (Or: “Help! I’m trapped in a play about the black experience, written by a white woman, and I can’t get out.”) by Kristina Poe

Friday Jan. 10th: Truckers by Mariana Carreño

Saturday Jan. 11th: Summer with Dianne by Seth Zvi Rosenfeld

Sunday Jan. 12th: Night Shift, conceived & written by nine LAB writers & Pigasus Pictures and LAB’s Intensive Ensemble Presentation

Dipti Bramhandkar (Islands of Contentment) is a playwright and performer. She started writing to chronicle her move from Mumbai to Central NY state as a child, and hasn’t stopped since. Her first play, The Accident, won Best Drama at the Frigid Festival. She has subsequently written and produced several short plays. Her autobiographical solo show, American Rookie, was performed at the Gotham Storytelling Festival, and will receive a full production at Luna Stage in January 2020. What drives her work is a desire to create nuanced portrayals of South Asian people and their stories. Dipti received her B.A. from Cornell, and M.A. from Cambridge, in English literature. She recently completed her residency at Guild Hall where she developed a new play currently titled Camping.

Guadalís Del Carmen (Bees and Honey) is a playwright, actor, and Co-Artistic Director of the Latinx Playwrights Circle in residence at Primary Stages. Her plays include Bees and Honey (Kilroys 2019, 50 Playwrights Project List of Unproduced Latinx Plays 2019), My Father’s Keeper (Steppenwolf Theater’s The Mix List 2019, Honorable Mention The Kilroy’s 2019), A Shero’s Journey or What Anacaona and Yemayá Taught Me… (Parsnip Ship Season Four, Theater Magazine Issue 49), Not For Sale (UrbanTheater Company Chicago 2018, Jeff Award Nominee 2019), Daughters of the Rebellion (Montclair State University New Works Initiative 2019), Blowout (Aguijón Theater 2013). She’s an Ars Nova Resident Artist and Artistic Associate of Black Lives Black Words

Mariana Carreño (Truckers) Mariana’s plays include The Red Gene, Miss 744890 (2014 Winner, MetLife Nuestras Voces, Repertorio Español, 2016; picked for publication in Italian as part of the American Playwrights Project); Patience, Fortitude and Other Antidepressants, (commissioned by Intar Theatre and produced as part of Encuentro 2014, at the LATC); Dance for a Dollar (a dance-theatre collaboration, Miracle Theatre, Portland, OR); Ofelia’s Lovers (Mabou Mines Residencies); Rare Encounters, Darkroom, The Wake and Fool’s Journey (Intar’s NewWorksLabs); and Adela (Autonomous University of Queretaro, Mexico), among others. Mariana has an MFA in Playwriting from the University of Southern California (USC), and is currently a professor of Playwriting at Purchase College (NYC).

Kristina Poe (11.05.08 Post Racial America Day 1 Or: “Help! I’m trapped in a play about the black experience, written by a white woman, and I can’t get out.“) is currently on stage at the Atlantic Theater in LAByrinth’s co-production of Stephen Adly Guirgis’ HALFWAY BITCHES GO STRAIGHT TO HEAVEN. Prior to that she conceived and curated LAByrinth’s INSTALLATION ON AMERICA taking on the Trump Administration’s family separation policy at the border. Her play THE IDEA OF ME was part of Cherry Lane’s Mentor Project (Chay Yew, mentor); THE RESTLESSNESS OF DESIRE was an O’Neill semi-finalist and LOVE SICK was named one of the best reviewed productions in Los Angeles and published by DPS. She is currently at work on a television pilot, “Every Inch a King” (What if the wrong guy was crucified? What if it was supposed to have been a woman?). Alum: UNCSA; Member: Actors Studio pdw and LAByrinth Theater Company

Michael Puzzo (Without) is a playwright, actor, producer and proud member of LAByrinth Theater Company since 1997. Some recent productions of his plays include; SPIRITS OF EXIT ELEVEN, THE SLASHER’S LAMENT, LYRIC IS WAITING, 5 SANDWICHES and THE DIRTY TALK. His work has been published by Dramatist Play Service, Smith & Kraus, Indie Theater Now and New York Theater Experience. As an actor, he most recently appeared in LAByrinth Theater Company’s Installation on America, Lynn Nottage’s This is Reading & NBC’s New Amsterdam.

Seth Zvi Rosenfeld (Summer with Dianne) credits a youth cemented to a loud corner on Amsterdam Avenue in NYC with setting his imagination afire. A lot of his early work both in plays and film are love-letters to that corner. That would include the Play Servy-N-Bernice 4Ever and the films A Brother’s Kiss and King of the Jungle and the NetFlix series “The Get Down”. It has been said that his work chronicles the collisions of cultures in Urban America. His plays The Flatted Fifth, Everythings Turning Into Beautiful, and Downtown Race Riot, were produced by the award winning off-broadway company The New Group. Seth is excited to be working with the LAB, a company that is truly fire.

Night Shift (A work in progress…)

Conceived by: John Armstrong, Elizabeth Canavan, Sean Carvajal, Mel Nieves, Wilemina Olivia-Garcia, John Ortiz, Joey Palestina, Kristina Poe, Michael Puzzo, Zachary Spicer & Martha Wollner.

Intensive Ensemble Presentation

New works by Labyrinth’s Intensive Ensemble 2019 (LAB’s educational program)

LAByrinth Theater Company, founded in 1992 as The Latino Actors Base, was created to deliberately interrupt the racial status quo by giving voice to artists of color and reflecting a world where color is the norm and not the exception. LAByrinth Theater Company is a diverse, impassioned, tightly knit ensemble of multicultural artists that empowers individuals and builds community by creating member driven, incendiary, new works of theater.

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