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TRU Voices New Plays Virtual Reading Series Presented with The StoryLine Project - Tickets On Sale Now

Jun 20 Through Jul 11 | Sun |
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Theater Resources Unlimited (TRU) announces the 22nd annual series of new plays, now virtual, by TRU writers produced by TRU producers, as part of TRU Voices New Plays Virtual Reading Series. Presented with generous support from The StoyLine Project, the plays will be performed on Sundays, June 20, June 27, and July 11, 2021 at 3:00pm. Each play will be followed by a "Dollars and Sense" panel on producing featuring prominent commercial producers, artistic directors and general managers. Tickets are on at

"We were so heartened to see that the shutdown did not shut down our talented community of writers," says TRU executive director Bob Ost. "We got an inspiring influx of new work submitted to the series, and we're proud to present three of the most intriguing. Also pleased to announce that all three are directed by women (and two have women producing them)."

Sunday June 20th, 2021, 3:00pm EDT Iben Cenholt/LIVEtheatrical and Evan Bernardin Productions present Tiny Empty Nest by David Beardsley directed by Jesica Garrou

"You are cordially invited to attend the Bookers' midlife meltdown. Hard hat required." With their only child in college, it's becoming clear that Ben and Claire Booker's relationship needs a jump start. When Ben proposes auditioning for Tiny Empty Nest, a reality TV show that chronicles empty nesters living in tiny houses, Claire is skeptical but goes along. Audition day arrives and, with nowhere to hide and a tiny house to build, Ben and Claire search for the emotional stamina and honesty they need to stay together. Tickets and details at

David Beardsley (playwright) is a playwright from Boston, Massachusetts. His work has been performed throughout the U.S., in Europe, and in Australia. His play, Holy and Unruly, was a 2019 finalist for the Ashland New Plays Festival and a semi-finalist for the 2020 Bay Area Playwrights Festival. Cursetownis currently in development in Moonbox Productions' 2021 Boston New Works Project.

Iben Cenholt (producer), after 20+yrs of IT project directing and video creation, took her never ending love for visual storytelling, theatre & movies and created a unique company LIVEtheatricals that produces (TRU Speak benefit:- A Woman's Perspective & Out of Order), creates (Triangle Theatre Company: People Will Talk, | Create Theatre, DASH), makes, helps, innovates and designs Virtual Experiences & Enhancements, all centered in Theatre Performance Art.

Evan Bernardin (producer) of Evan Bernardin Productions is a General Manager and Producer. Evan has worked with the New York Musical Theatre Festival (NYMF), Broadway Cares Equity Fights AIDS (BCEFA), Fringe (NY & LA), The Workshop Theatre Company, The Broadway Youth Ensemble (BYE), and The Make A Wish Foundation.

Jesica Garrou (director) is located in Maine but working all over the country. Her early career as an Online Instructional Designer combined nicely with her theatre background when the pandemic forced Virtual Theatre into the limelight. Prior projects include Virtual Happy Hour as part of TRUSpeak ...Hear Our Voices benefit in February 2021,and Alice! An Original Musical.

Sunday June 27th, 2021, 3:00pm EDT Golden Wings by Coolidge Harris II directed by Rain Pryor

"Ye shall know the truth, and the truth will make you free." Golden Wings explores the complexities of love, loyalty, and the sanctity of marriage. When the line is crossed in the Pinkens family, it is revealed that the truth can bring you out of the darkness and into a whole new light. Tickets and details at

Coolidge Harris II (playwright) is an award-winning playwright. He was a member of the Sons and Ancestors Players Theatre Troupe under the artistic direction of the late T. Michael Gates. He has authored the One Act play A Trial for Butchy and later wrote Footsteps in the Dark. After a move to the Bay Area and spending 25 years in the Washington DC metro area, Coolidge came back to California and retired as an educator to pursue his passion in playwrighting. His more recent works are Greenwood and Golden Wings. Greenwood won the 2021 African American Playwrights Group BIPOC New Play competition in conjunction with the Matthews Playhouse of the Performing Arts in Charlotte, NC. It is a finalist in the 2021 (AACT) American Association of Community Theatres NewPlayFest, a semifinalist in the 2021 National Playwrights Conference at the Eugene O'Neill Theatre, and Honorable Mention in the 2020 Panndora's Box Playwrights Competition. 

Benny Lumpkins Jr. (producer) originated from Detroit and got his theatre start at Old Dominion University. Recent producing credits include Broadway: Slave Play, Off Broadway: The Landstuhl Chronicles, A Commercial Jingle for Regina Comet. A Hollywood costume designer/set costumer, recent credits include: "My Brother Wes" on Amazon. 

Rain Pryor (director) co-founded Baltimore Theatre Works. She taught acting at Center Stage, Baltimore School For The Arts, and was honored at Coppin State University Theatre Arts Conference in 2019. Mother May I by humorist Dylan Brody was Pryor's directorial debut. She also directed MILF, Mom I'd Like to Follow written and performed by Comedian Meshelle, which won Best Stand Up at the United Solo Festival in NY and has played to sold out crowds across the country. She was artistic director of the Strand Theatre in Baltimore in 2010 and directed three highly successful shows that brought the company into a financial surplus. Fried Chicken and Latkes is Pryor's award-winning solo show, a story of growing up black and Jewish in a politically incorrect era. The show played to sold out crowds at the Canon Theatre in Beverly Hills, CA, and repeated that success in New York, Chicago, Ohio, Virginia, Texas, and Scotland.

Sunday, July 11th, 2021, 3:00pm EDT Stephanie Pope Lofgren presents No One Cries for the Blacksmith by Lloyd Khaner directed by Tonya Pinkins

"There's light at the end of every tunnel." No One Cries for the Blacksmith follows a hope-filled New York City taxi cab driver and his confident marketing executive passenger on the best, the worst and possibly the last day of their lives. Based on true events, this intense drama infused with humor will take you on a journey wondering if these strangers turned friends will make it out alive. Tickets and details at   Lloyd Khaner (playwrght) is a member of the Dramatists Guild and the Playwright's Center. His plays, including Purblind and Like a Sandwich, have been produced at Playwrights Horizons and the West Bank Café, among others. In 2019, his play Life Boat won best full-length play at the Strawberry Festival in New York City. Lloyd was awarded a Chesterfield Writing Fellowship with Steven Spielberg and Universal Studios. Film credits include co-writer of the award winning short films, Wish You Were Here and The Werewolf of Praxton Hall.   Stephanie Pope Lofgren (producer) is a producer, writer and Broadway veteran who has appeared in ten Broadway shows. She is a Board Member of New City Music Theatre whose mission is to harness the power of the performing arts to challenge the status quo and to respond to the pulse of a contemporary generation through engaging, informed and inclusive experiences on and off the stage. She is thrilled to be presenting Lloyd Khaner's  No One Cries for the Blacksmith for the TRU Voices Virtual Play Reading Series with this extraordinary cast and production team.   Tonya Pinkins (director) is a Tony Award winner for Jelly's Last Jam  and a Tony nominee for Play On! and Caroline, or Change. Her debut feature Red Pill has won over 20 awards at International festivals including Best Feature and director at The Hamilton Black Film Festival and Best Director at The Micheaux Film Festival. Tonya appears in The Starz series Run the World and as Emett Till's grandmother in the ABC Anthology Women of the Movement.

"Dollars and Sense" industry talkback to follow the reading, speakers TBA.The series was created to not only develop new plays but also new producers for theater, as well as foster the relationship between writers and producers with the hope that our readings will launch future steps of development. 

Theater Resources Unlimited (TRU) is the leading network for developing theater professionals, a twenty-eight-year-old 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization created to help producers produce, emerging theater companies to emerge healthily and all theater professionals to understand and navigate the business of the arts. Membership includes self-producing artists as well as career producers and theater companies. TRU publishes an email community newsletter of services, goods and productions; presents monthly panels as well as the new weekly Community Gatherings; offers a Producer Development & Mentorship Program taught by prominent producers and general managers in New York theater, and also presents Producer Boot Camp workshops to help aspirants develop business skills. TRU serves writers through the TRU Voices Play Reading Series, Writer-Producer Speed Date, a Practical Playwriting Workshop, How to Write a Musical That Works and a Director-Writer Communications Lab. Programs of Theater Resources Unlimited are supported in part by the Montage Foundation, The Storyline Project and the Leibowitz Greenway Foundation. For more information about TRU membership and programs, visit

Venue: Online

245 W 29th St, New York, NY 10001 Map