Orlando Shakespeare Theater Reveals Keynote Speaker And Line-up Of Events For Playfest!

Tony Award Winner Jon Jory Delivers Keynote Speech on November 3, 2012
Jon Jory / Photo
Jon Jory / Photo
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Oct. 25, 2012 - PRLog -- Orlando Shakespeare Theater in Partnership with UCF (http://orlandoshakes.org) reveals its lineup of new play readings, special networking events, and panel discussions for PlayFest! The Harriett Lake Festival of New Plays. Running November 2-4, 2012 at the John and Rita Lowndes Shakespeare Center (812 East Rollins Street), PlayFest is a prime opportunity to converse with PlayFest artists, establish lasting connections, and catch groundbreaking new pieces in only three days.

“We have assembled an incredibly compelling group of plays from an outstanding group of playwrights,” said Mark Routhier, Director of New Play Development, “from dark comedies, to engrossing and moving dramas, to exploring religious and sexual politics, to a period adaptation of a classic, these new plays examine our contemporary human condition in ways that will make you laugh and cry and go home thinking.”

This season, Orlando Shakes welcomes Tony Award winner Jon Jory as its Keynote Speaker on Saturday, November 3, 2012 at 7:00 p.m. Jory’s adaptation of Sense and Sensibility will run in repertory with Othello at Orlando Shakes next spring.


As the Producing Director at Actors Theatre of Louisville, Jon Jory directed over 125 plays and produced over 1,000 during his 32-year tenure. He conceived the internationally lauded Humana Festival of New American Plays, the SHORTS Festival, and the Brown-Forman Classics-in-Context Festival. He was also the Artistic Founding Director of Long Wharf Theatre in New Haven, Connecticut, and he has been inducted in New York's Theatre Hall of Fame. He has received the National Theatre Conference Award and ATA Distinguished Career Award. For his commitment to new plays, he has received the Margo Jones Award twice, the Shubert Foundation's James N. Vaughan Memorial Award for Exceptional Achievement and Contribution to the Development of Professional Theatre, Carnegie Mellon's Commitment to Playwriting Award, and the Special Tony Award for Achievement in Regional Theatre. He currently teaches acting and directing at the Santa Fe University of Art and Design.

Past PlayFest Keynote speakers and performances have included Philip Seymour Hoffman, Olympia Dukakis, Theresa Rebeck, John Pielmeier, Israel Horovitz, Jeffrey Hatcher, and Pulitzer Prize winner Robert Schenkkan.

For an in-depth look at the PlayFest Readings and Special Events, please visit


READINGS – Cost: $5

Leveling Up

By Deb Laufer | Friday, November 2 at 7:30 p.m.

How do you straddle the fuzzy line between reality and virtual reality when you're playing video games 20 hours a day? Ian, Zander, and Chuck are two years out of college when the government comes looking for expert gamers to launch remote missiles. And the bombs and the guns and the screams and the victories look so much like the ones on their Xbox.

Night Train

By John Biguenet  | Saturday, November 3 at 12:00 p.m.

In this dark comedy, a scruffy man with a second-class ticket insinuates himself into the first-class compartment of a wealthy banker headed back home in the middle of the night. Full of questions but with a knack for conveniently forgetting the answers, the unwanted traveling companion may have in mind more than mere conversation by the time the train arrives at its destination the next morning.

The Standby Lear

By John W. Lowell | Saturday, November 3 at 3:00 p.m.

When you've waited for the chance of a lifetime, what do you do when you realize it may have come too late? The standby's dream turns into the actor's nightmare, as Augie and his wife confront the choices of their life together and the inevitable slow curtain.

Tom Jones

By Jon Jory | Saturday, November 3 at 8:00 p.m.

When the amorous and well-intending Tom Jones sets off in quest of the virtuous Shannon Western, hilarity ensues. It seems the fates are at odds with the lovers, as Tom is met at every turn with debauchery and illicit rendezvous. Brimming over with scandal, intrigue, and all-out bawdry, this humorous adaptation of TOM JONES puts true love to the test.


By Lia Romeo | Sunday, November 4 at 12:00 p.m.

In a world where we are all constantly connected to the internet, and via the internet to one another, why do so many people still feel so alone? In a series of interwoven vignettes - a young girl's most embarrassing moment goes viral, a high school student must choose between real life and role-playing games, a teacher is accidentally seduced by her student on an internet dating site – CONNECTED examines love and friendship in the age of social media.

Three Wolves and a Lamb

By Yussef El Guindi | Sunday, November 4 at 4:00 p.m.

Set in the U.S., four American peace activists gather in an apartment to prepare for the arrival of Palestinian and Israeli kids, who are coming to participate in a weekend peace camp. Certain skeletons in the closets of these peace activists tumble out and threaten to turn an evening talking about peace into a full-out hilarious paintball war.  

The Cortez Method

By Rob Keefe | Sunday, November 4 at 7:00 p.m.

Sara and Bill will do whatever it takes to prepare for their new arrival, but an unexpected visit from Bill's brother, Walter, unravels their plans and makes it clear their shiny future has been built on the troubled foundation of their past. What happens when you make a bad decision for all the right reasons? Fertility, home improvement, and family collide in this darkly comic roller coaster ride.


Keynote Address by Jon Jory – Free Event!

Margeson Theater | Saturday, November 3 at 7:00 p.m.

Master Class in Acting with Jon Jory | Cost: $50
Santos Dantin Studio Theater | Saturday, November 3 at 9:30 a.m.

Playwright's Panel –The Impulse to Write: What Drives Playwrights? | FREE!
Mandell Theater | Sunday, November 4 at 2:15 p.m.

All events take place at the John & Rita Lowndes Shakespeare Center, 812 East Rollins Street, Orlando, FL 32803.


Festival Pass - $28

A no-frills approach to PlayFest, the Festival Pass enables you to see all seven PlayFest readings. A fantastic bargain!

PlayFest passes and tickets are available by calling 407-447-1700 or online at
http://orlandoshakes.org or in person at the box office located inside the Lowndes Shakespeare Center, 812 East Rollins Street in Orlando’s Loch Haven Cultural Park.

PlayFest is made possible through the generous support of title sponsor Harriett Lake, PlayFest sponsors Ingrid and Coleman Cordell, Frank Santos and Dan Dantin, and Valerie and Jim Shapiro, the National New Play Network, Orlando Weekly, and Comfort Suites. Orlando Shakespeare Theater in Partnership with UCF is supported by United Arts of Central Florida with funds from the United Arts campaign and by State of Florida, Department of State, Division of Cultural Affairs and the Florida Arts Council.


Orlando Shakespeare Theater in Partnership with UCF is dedicated to the development of new plays, one of our country's most enduring art forms. PlayFest! The Harriett Lake Festival of New Plays is a nationally recognized program and represents one of the strongest commitments to new plays nationally. Over the years, Orlando Shakes has nurtured and developed over 100 new plays – many of which have received subsequent productions in New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, Seattle, and Washington D.C.
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