“I think that as a playwright, if I detail that environment, then I’m taking away something from them [designers]. I’m taking away their creativity and their ability to have input themselves, not just to follow what the playwright has written. So I do a minimum set description and let the designers create within that.”
-August Wilson, African American Review, Vol. 35, No. 1, Spring 2001
This quote reminds me of the delicate interactions among artists in the intensely collaborative process of theatre. The essential chemistry between playwrights and directors is often discussed, but the relationship between playwrights and designers is less-heralded. Playwright Deborah Brevoort’s moving tribute to designer Pavel Dobrusky is a powerful example of that relationship (also read Molly Smith’s beautiful post on Pavel’s legacy).
On May 13, we’ll be honoring playwrights and one very special designer at our 2013 Gala Evening in New York City. As you may know, TCG Books is the largest independent trade publisher of dramatic literature in North America. To celebrate a 30-year legacy that includes 12 Pulitzer Prize winners, and support future innovations in content digitization, about 35 TCG-published playwrights will be in attendance.
The Gala will honor Ming Cho Lee, the set designer, mentor and teacher about whom we will publish a full retrospective later this year; as well as Ruth and Stephen Hendel, two individuals whose fierce spirit as producers has brought acclaim and wide exposure to many deserving new plays. For those who cannot join us in person, you can contribute though tribute ads or by sponsoring one of our upcoming books! All of the information is here, including a list of the books we are publishing in the coming year. (Please note: if you’d like to place a tribute, it’s a quick turnaround–we’d need your copy by the end of tomorrow, May 7).
Speaking of playwrights and Pulitzers, I’m thrilled that Ayad Akhtar, author of Disgraced, the 2013 Pulitzer Prize for Drama, will speak at the 2013 TCG National Conference: Learn Do Teach in Dallas! Ayad is an actor, director, playwright, novelist and teacher whose work often reflects upon his experiences as a Pakistani-American. Register now to join Ayad and our growing list of speakers and attendees in Dallas.