The 2004 residency offers six playwrights and one composer three weeks to research and write at a working ranch in northeastern Wyoming. The seven artists invited to participate in the 2004 program receive transportation, room and board during the retreat.
The participating artists are selected and invited by Philip Himberg, Sundance Theatre Program producing artistic director, and Robert Blacker, artistic director of the Sundance Theatre Laboratories. Both Himberg and Blacker are in residence as creative advisors during the retreat.
The 2004 Sundance/Ucross Playwrights retreat participants, announced Jan. 21, are:
Philip Kan Gotanda, a playwright and independent filmmaker. His plays include The Wash, Song for a Nisei Fisherman, Yankee Dawg You Die, Ballad of Yachiko and Sisters Matsumoto and have been produced at theatres around the country, including Berkeley Rep, East West Players, Manhattan Theatre Club, Mark Taper Forum, New York Shakespeare Festival, Playwrights Horizons, Seattle Repertory Theatre and South Coast Repertory, as well as abroad in Tokyo and London. At Ucross, Gotanda will examine a legal case brought in 1986 that helped overturn a Supreme Court Decision that allowed the U.S. government to incarcerate Japanese Americans during World War II.
Robert L. Freedman, who was nominated for the Writers Guild Award and two Emmy Awards as the writer and a producer of ABC's miniseries "Life With Judy Garland: Me and My Shadows." He was a finalist for the Humanitas Prize for his teleplay for "What Makes a Family" and nominated for the Writers Guild Award for his teleplay for "Rodgers and Hammerstein's Cinderella." He won the Writers Guild Award for his HBO film, "A Deadly Secret." His New York theatre credits include a production of his play, Frantic and workshop of his musical, Grand Duchy, at Playwrights Horizons. His current projects include the film adaptation of Dominick Dunne's "Another City, Not My Own," and a movie about Bette Davis. At Ucross, he will collaborate with composer Steven Lutvak on Campaign of the Century and "Kind Hearts and Coronets." Located on a 22,000-acre working cattle ranch at the westernmost edge of the Great Plains, the Ucross Foundation was founded in 1981 and has awarded fellowships to over 1,000 writers and artist in all disciplines from around the United States and the world.
The residency program "recognizes excellence in the arts, literature and natural sciences by supporting the work of individuals who have demonstrated exceptional achievement or potential for making a significant contribution to their field of inquiry and to society."
Five projects that began their life at Ucross perform at theatres across the country this season. Paula Vogel's play, The Long Christmas Ride Home, and Doug Wright's I Am My Own Wife opened to critical raves in New York in fall 2003, and Wright's play became the second Sundance project to open on Broadway in the last two seasons. Adam Guettel and Craig Lucas' musical, The Light in the Piazza, is currently playing the Goodman Theatre in Chicago, the same month that Kia Corthron's play, Snapshot Silhouette, goes into production at the Children's Theatre of Minneapolis. Daniel Goldfarb's Sarah, Sarah will open at the Manhattan Theatre Club in March.