There’s a new theater group in Westchester, one committed to serving as an incubator for new works and developing artists.
Alan Lutwin’s Westchester Collaborative Theater — a consortium of playwrights, directors and actors — will hold a staged reading of six new works by local writers at the Ossining Public Library June 17 and 19.
“Summer Blast: Festival of One-Act Plays” will be presented at 7 p.m. June 17 and 2 p.m. June 19 in Ossining Public Library’s Budarz Theater, 53 Croton Ave. After the June 19 staged reading, there will be a talkback with the writers and directors.
“These staged readings, script in hand, are what we consider phase two of the process,” Lutwin says. “We’ve worked them through in the lab and heard them read. Then comes the staged reading. The next phase would be a fully mounted production,” Lutwin says.
The works to be read at the library include: “Any Old Wake Will Do,” by Joe McDonald; “Goodbye Party” by Gabrielle Fox; “Ill Winds” by Gary Batson; “Yes,” by Evelyn Mertens; and two plays by Marshall Fine, “Honest to Pete” and “The Dogs’ Breakfast.”
As the name suggests, this is a collaborative process, one Lutwin insists be constructive. While it is in Westchester, it draws artists from the city and from Rockland, too. They meet regularly to hear scripts, to audition actors for readings, to do scene study.
(Actors interested in joining WCT should send a headshot and resume to email@example.com. Playwrights should send a writing sample of no more than 20 pages to the same address.)
WCT began last fall, before the demise of Ossining’s other theater lab — Blueberry Pond Theatre Ensemble — and now includes artists who once called Blueberry home.
(Lutwin says Blueberry’s Shine House Theater sustained water damage from a burst pipe and flooding over the winter, but that the town is now looking to fix it and return it to use by community groups.)
For now, though, Lutwin is delighted to have the cool confines of the Ossining library’s Budarz Theater to call home. WCT’s founder and director says there are about 80 members in the group’s roster, and bi-monthly lab meetings tend to draw about 20 or so.
WCT also invites “guest artists” to inform and inspire the membership. Among those who’ve sat in on lab meetings:
Michael Shulman, a company member of Broadway’s “Les Miserables” and a producer of Off-Broadway’s “Mistakes Were Made.”
Bruce Sabath, a Broadway actor, seen in the revival of “Company” (and at the Schoolhouse in Croton Falls.)
Buddy Crutchfield, director of Off-Broadway’s “Freckleface Strawberry”
Mark St. Germain, who wrote the Off-Broadway hit “Freud’s Last Session.”
And Mart Crowley, who wrote “The Boys In the Band.”
In addition to the June 17 and 19 readings, WCT will also be holding an informational session for Ossining high-school and middle-school students who are interested in a planned youth theater workshop to begin in the fall. That meeting, at 1 p.m. June 18, will be in the library’s second-floor conference room.
Contact Lutwin at firstname.lastname@example.org.