NEXT ACT! New Play Summit 7 – Nothing says summer like a theatre festival!

Nothing says summer like a theatre festival!

Capital Repertory Theatre and Proctors shift annual
NEXT ACT! New Play Summit to summer dates, June 2–4

ALBANY, N.Y.—MAY 29, 2018—The annual Next Act! New Play Summit! has shifted from its traditional fall calendar slot, becoming a summer institution for Capital Repertory Theatre and Proctors.

Next Act! New Play Summit 7 will land June 2-4, featuring readings of two full length plays—Judith Leora’s Showpony and Tira Palmquist’s The Way North. Additionally, the three-day gathering will featurethe popular First 15 and New Voices events.

NEXT ACT! a joint venture of theREP and Proctors, seeks to highlight new works that use theatre to address injustices, inequities, and cultural collisions, providing a voice for the unheard on stage, in the workplace, the Capital Region and beyond. To date, the summit has brought more than 300 theatre professionals (including playwrights, actors and directors) and 4,000+ audience members together for a series of workshops, readings and discussions.

Leora’s Showpony, first heard at last season’s NEXT ACT! returns for a Second Look, giving audiences and the artistic staff at theREP a chance to take a more in-depth look at a promising script.

Sex, power and politics run rampant in Showpony (5 p.m. Sunday, June 3, GE Theatre at Proctors). A Fortune 500 company acquires a small female-owned advertising agency with promises of equality, job security and new opportunities. When a group of savvy, intelligent female employees are asked to finesse a pitch for a pair of stilettos that will be presented by a team of men, the women get a big reality check—and pink slips. Who’s out and who’s in? Five women’s lives are about to change forever.

Palmquist’s The Way North (7:30 p.m. Monday, June 4, Capital Repertory Theatre) finds a mysterious traveler—completely unsuited to hiking and the climate—stumbling onto former Sheriff Freddy Hansen’s property, on a Northern Minnesota winter’s night. Hansen, now a wilderness expert and trekking guide, knows how to keep people alive and quickly goes to work to save the young woman’s life. In doing so he discovers not one, but two important facts. She’s a Sudanese refugee attempting to cross into Canada, and she’s seven months pregnant. Hansen is forced to choose between what’s lawful and what’s right, to find the way north again.

Palmquist’s script,a 2018 O’Neill Award finalist, is also receiving a weeklong June workshop at McHall, Idaho’s Seven Devils Playwrights Conference.

The First 15: Be a Literary Manager (Noon, Saturday, June 2, The Addy at Proctors) features 15-minute readings from the opening pages of five diverse submissions to this season’s competition, followed by critique and conversation with audience and artistic staff.

And New Voices (3 p.m. Saturday, June 2, The Addy at Proctors) grows ever more important as NEXT ACT! strives to include the region’s best young playwrights (aged 13–19) in developing new works for the American stage. Ten ten-minute selections*—all finalists from theREP’s Young Playwright Contest—will be presented at the summitprior to the five winning pieces receiving a workshop with two-time NEXT ACT! winner Suzanne Bradbeer, and full productions by the Summer Stage Young Acting Company later this season.

Complimentary refreshments and desserts will be available at all events, with cash bars added during post show discussions. All events are open to the public.

Tickets, $10 for day passes, $5 for students, are available at the Box Office at Proctors, 432 State Street, Schenectady, and the Box Office at Capital Repertory Theatre, 111 N. Pearl Street, Albany; by phone at 518.445.SHOW (7469); and online at

NEXT ACT! New Play Summit 7 is made possible in part by a legacy gift from Samson O.A. Ullmann, professor of English at Union College, 1957–1992


*New Voices titles include:

Reflection by Lily Jandrisevits—Shenendehowa High School
Expression by Ava Zuelsdorf—Loudonville Christian School
Freak by Jonathan Van De Loo—Walnut Hill School for the Arts
Heavier Things Remain by Olivia Lawrence—Schalmont High School
The Council by S. E. Vatalaro—Shaker High School
The Incendium by Oliver Price—Loudonville Christian School
Miss Muffet’s Cheese Buffet by Jashton Gieser—Loudonville Christian School
Bootstrap by John McCorkle—Troy High School
The Powerful and the Powerless by Emily O’Brien—Hoosic Valley High School
Sweet Dreams by Aminah Wingfield—Rensselaer Jr-Sr. High School