Waiting to Be Invited first brought her name to Denver theatregoers' attentions, and now Someplace Soft to Fall, the latest from S.M. Shephard-Massat, has won the Denver Theatre Center-based Francesca Primus Playwriting Prize.
Someplace Soft to Fall finds family matriarch Beverly Ann looking back on her life of hardship, pain, love and loss. While she realizes she must forgive to be forgiven, she also understands that forgiving herself is the hardest part of all. Someplace Soft to Fall is Shephard-Massat's second full-length play.
The Francesca Primus Playwriting Prize, funded by the Foundation, is named in memory of Primus who, for many years, was a theatre critic and columnist for Back Stage. It offers women the opportunity to have their plays evaluated by a panel of judges that includes journalists, writers and theatre professionals. The winning playwright receives $3,000, a residency and a rehearsed reading of the play as part of the Denver Center Theatre Company's U S WEST TheatreFest, an annual reading of new plays. The Theatre Company also retains the option of presenting a full staging of the winning script as part of its regular production season.
Previous Primus winners include Tatjana In Color by Julia Jordan and Blur by Melanie Marnich, currently on stage at New York's Manhattan Theatre Club.
Submissions for the 2001 Francesca Primus Prize are currently being accepted. Interested playwrights should write for guidelines to: The Francesca Primus Prize, Bruce K. Sevy, Associate Artistic Director New Play Development, Denver Center Theatre Company, 1050 13th Street, Denver, CO, 80204. — By Christine Ehren