Free readings of two new plays today at Arkansas Rep as part of TheatreSquared New Play Festival

ark new play festIn partnership with TheatreSquared, located in Fayetteville, The Rep will host two staged reading performances in The Rep’s Lobby, located on the ground level.:

Saturday, June 27
Free of Charge
2 p.m. – Uncle by Lee Blessing
7 p.m. – Dust by Qui Nguyen

2 p.m. – Uncle by Lee Blessing
From Pulitzer Prize and Tony Award nominee Lee Blessing (A Walk in the Woods), Uncle is a comedy about an academic sabbatical gone terribly awry. Dr. Paul Waymiller is facing a “publish or perish” deadline on his book about Chekov’s masterpiece, Uncle Vanya. With his career in the balance, he refuses to be distracted by anything—be it his imminent divorce, Vanya himself, or the interdimensional wormhole that’s opened up in his backyard.ABOUT THE PLAYWRIGHT
Lee Blessing has written more than thirty plays, including A Walk in the Woods (nominated for Tony and Olivier Awards and a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize), Going to St. Ives, Independence, A Body of Water, Thief River, Two Rooms and Eleemosynary. Recent notable premieres include For the Loyal at Illusion Theatre in Minneapolis, Courting Harry at History Theatre in St. Paul and Great Falls at the Ensemble Theatre in Sydney, Australia. Blessing’s plays have earned two Steinberg/American Theater Critics Association awards as well as Obie, Outer Critics Circle, Drama Desk and L.A. Critics Association awards. His TNT film “Cooperstown” won the Humanitas Award. Blessing headed the Graduate Playwriting Program at Rutgers University for over a decade.

7 p.m. – Dust by Qui Nguyen

Dust is the story of Thuy, a girl who sets out to find her ex-G.I. father – who has kept her existence a secret from his wife for 16 years. Blending live hip-hop, raw emotion and wry wit, Dust recasts the American dream through the eyes of an Amer-Asian teenager in this redemptive, cross-cultural coming-of-age story.


Qui Nguyen is a playwright, screenwriter and co-founder of the OBIE Award-winning Vampire Cowboys of New York City. His work, known for its innovative use of pop-culture, stage violence, puppetry and multimedia, has been lauded as “Culturally Savvy Comedy” by The New York Times, “Infectious Fun” by Variety, and “Tour De Force Theatre” by Time Out New York. This past season, The Chicago Tribune praised him as a “refreshing, break-the-rules writer” as Time Out Chicago named his play She Kills Monsters one of the 10 Best Plays of 2013.Recent honors include being named a 2014 Sundance Institute/Time Warner Fellow; a 2014 McCarter/Sallie B. Goodman Fellow; a 2013 Sundance Theatre Lab Fellow; a recipient of a 2013 AATE Distinguished Play Award (She Kills Monsters); a 2012 TCG Young Leader of Color; and receiving 2012 & 2009 GLAAD Media Award nominations for his plays She Kills Monsters and Soul Samurai.

His company, Vampire Cowboys, often credited for being the pioneers of “geek theatre”, holds the unique distinction of being the first and currently only professional theatre organization to be officially sponsored by NY Comic Con. They’ve been praised by the Village Voice as “New York’s Best Army of Geeks” and currently in-residence at The New Ohio Theater and IRT.