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David Henry Hwang Writer's Institute

New Year, New Play


with Alice Tuan

Calendar Jan 23, 2021 at 10 am, runs for 8 weeks


It's a new year, a clean slate, the fresh air of possibility. What a good time to explore new characters, new ideas, new thoughts.  Come to this workshop and try your new pages, write out the idea that's been knocking on your mind and see what new paths, new scenes unfold.  Each week we'll warm up with writing exercises and then workshop new scenes with feedback and guidance to move forward.  Or maybe you have new eyes to look at an early draft--come on in and give it a rewrite.  Take this chance to build your writing practice and meet other writers--there is nothing to lose, only to gain. All levels welcome.

Level: All levels


Alice Tuan is a nationally-acclaimed, internationally-produced playwright, teacher and performer.  Her play Last of the Suns (Berkeley Rep, Ma-Yi Theater) had a bilingual Chinese-English version commissioned and performed by the Chinese International School in Hong Kong, where she was Artist-in-Residence March 2019. Almasi Collaborative Arts also staged a reading of this play with an African cast in Zimbabwe July 2019. Tuan is best known for Ajax (por nobody) (Flea Theater, Salvage Vangard, Melbourne Fringe).  It was staged at Toronto’s SummerWorks Festival and written about in ‘The Shelf Life of Shock’ (The Drama Review). Ajax (por nobody), along with four other plays, are archived in the Billy Rose Collection at the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts at Lincoln Center. Cocks Crow (Americans trying to do business in Shanghai) was developed at the Ojai Playwrights Conference August 2018 and had a reading through East West Players’ CounterCulture series in 2019. Other works have been produced at Humana, Foundry, East West, Taper Too, Edinburgh Fringe. Before she was a playwright, Tuan taught English as a Second Language (ESL) in Guangzhou and Los Angeles. 

Introduction to Playwriting


with Lisa Sanaye Dring

Calendar Apr 1, 2021 at 7:30 pm, runs for 8 weeks


In this workshop we will learn about playwriting through practice and discussion. We'll go over basic components of beginning/middle/end, action, dialogue, character, and formatting, as well as structure and style. We'll read some fabulous plays. Each writer will leave class with a polished 10-minute piece as well as the beginning of a full-length play.

Level: Beginners

Scholarships are limited and based on availability. For more information, please email  


Lisa was honored as a recipient of the 2020/21 PLAY LA Stage Raw/Humanitas Prize. The Wicked One was a finalist for the Relentless Award, a finalist for the Bay Area Playwrights Festival, a finalist for the Seven Devils Playwrights Conference and a semi-finalist for the O'Neill Playwrights Conference. Kaidan Project: Walls Grow Thin, a play she co-wrote with Chelsea Sutton, was nominated for 8 Ovation Awards including Best Production (winner of 5). Lisa's work has been developed/produced by The New Group, Actors Theatre of Louisville, East West Players, Circle X, SCF @ Son of Semele, Playwrights’ Arena, Rogue Artists Ensemble, The Motor Company and Theatre of NOTE. Lisa is co-writing the next chapter of Kaidan Project as an augmented reality project, an EWP/Rogue Artists collaboration coming in October. She is a MacDowell Fellow, a member of EWP’s Writers Group and will go to Yaddo in 2021. Lisa co-founded and co-directs Rogue Artists’ Rogue Lab, an incubator for hyper-theatrical new work. She serves as the Associate Artistic Director of Circle X Theatre Co.

She has made theatre for nursing homes, gardens, bars, cars, virtual reality universes, earbuds, fields, warehouses and performance venues.

Payment plan available: $100 deposit plus 5 payments of $55.00, paid every two weeks.

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