New Dramatists, founded in 1949, offers a haven for playwrights to develop their craft via workshops, staged readings, awards and prizes. Readings of new plays are also crucial to the process, and several are lined up in the weeks ahead:
• March 28, 4 PM: The Unwritten Law -- Jim Simpson directs this dark comedy by Mexican playwright Felipe Santander, translated by ND alumnus Lynne Alvarez. Law puts a man through a Kafkaesque society of drug dealers, hookers and corrupt officials.
• March 28, 7 PM: Historic Times and Hotel Traumbad, by recent University of California San Diego grads Andrew Case and Andrea Stolowitz, respectively. Ivan Talijanic directs Historic Times, which deals with serious composers battling Hollywood commercialism; Daisy Walker stages Traumbad, which is set at an Eastern European spa.
• April 4, 7 PM: Interior Landscape -- Harding Lemay, a New Dramatists alum, writes of loyalties and betrayals among three female friends.
* New Dramatist membership lasts for a seven-year span, with alumni including Robert Anderson, August Wilson, Lanford Wilson, Richard Foreman, William Inge, Donald Margulies, Terrence McNally, Suzan-Lori Parks, John Patrick Shanley, Mac Wellman and many more.
This year's new crop of New Dramatists include: Carter, David Lindsay Abaire, Mark Bazzone, John Beluso, Bridget Carpenter, Lisa D'Amour (Homefree), Karen Hartman (Gum), Lynn Nottage (Mud, River, Stone, Crumbs From The Table Of Joy, Por'knockers).
Readings are free but require reservations. For information call (212) 757-6960.
-- By David Lefkowitz