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TheatreWorks Silicon Valley launches 20th Anniversary New Works Festival

Rajiv Joseph (photo Rohit Chandra) and David Henry Hwang (photo Matthew Murray) are guests of honor at the "Before the Ink Dries" TheatreWorks fundraiser on August 11, 2023

TheatreWorks Silicon Valley will kick off its 20th Anniversary New Works Festival on August 11 with a fundraiser featuring two of America’s most fascinating contemporary playwrights: Tony Award winner David Henry Hwang and Pulitzer Prize finalist and Obie Award winner Rajiv Joseph. A special dinner prepared by top local chefs will be followed by a conversation with Joseph and Hwang, where these theatre luminaries will reveal their playwriting secrets, tease what's next in their careers, and share behind-the-scenes stories of their iconic work on Broadway and beyond. 

Pictured, clockwise: New Works Festival playwrights Minita Gandhi (photo Bjoern Kommerel) Min Kahng (photo Faryn Borella) Michael Gaston and Bess Welden (photo Brian Fitzgerald)

Over two weekends, beginning August 12, theatre lovers are invited to a sneak peek into the future of theatre, when the Tony Award recipient theatre company offers the opportunity for audiences to experience new plays and musicals in their initial stages of development and see their evolution over multiple performances. There will be stage readings of four new works: Min Kahng’s "Happy Pleasant Valley: A Senior Sex Scandal Murder Mystery Musical," a rollicking musical comedy about scandals and murder in a senior living community; Minita Gandhi’s "Nerve,an aromatic dark comedy that includes on-stage cooking and shares recipes and bites with the audience; Bess Welden’s National Jewish Playwriting Contest winner "Madeleines,a drama that explores sibling conflict, family legacies, and treasured recipes; and "Low Expectations,a globe-trotting solo show with music by seasoned film and television actor Michael Gaston. In addition, actor/activist Shakina returns to TheatreWorks for the first time since her hit 2014 New Works Festival appearance, to perform a special concert premiering never-before-heard songs from her brand-new musical.

The Festival has launched many new works onto TheatreWorks’ main stage and to national productions, including Broadway’s Tony Award-winning Best Musical "Memphisand the 2018 Obie Award winner for Best New American Play, Rajiv Joseph’s "Describe The Night". The Festival has given playgoers their first looks at new works by such luminaries as Andrew Lippa, Stephen Schwartz, Wendy Wasserstein, Marsha Norman, Christopher Chen, Rachel Sheinkin, David Hein and Irene Sankoff, Rajiv Joseph, Duncan Sheik, Rogelio Martinez, Kimber Lee, Joe DiPietro, Rehana Lew Mirza, and many more.


"Before the Ink Dries: A Special TheatreWorks Fundraiser with David Henry Hwang and Rajiv Joseph." One-night-only benefit - purchase tickets

20th Anniversary New Works Festival takes place August 11-20 and features three new plays and one new musical. Purchase individual tickets or a festival pass here. Each New Works Festival Pass gets you entry to one reading of each of the four shows. 

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