Thursday, November 30

Gulfshore Playhouse announces New Works Festival winners

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Gulfshore Playhouse has announced the winners of its upcoming New Works Festival.

The Annual New Works Festival will take place at The Norris Center in Naples from Sept. 15 through Sept. 17  and will include developmental workshops for the winning plays, culminating with staged readings.

Following a months-long anonymous process, three winners were chosen by the theatre’s artistic team. As part of the New Works Festival, these playwrights will receive a workshop culminating in a staged reading before an audience.

The three winners are:

Circle Forward, by Deb Hiett
Directed by Jeffrey Binder
Seventeen years after the loss of her young husband from cancer, Mia meets a teenager, Ethan, who believes he is the reincarnation of her late husband. When Ethan and his mom Lexi come to Mia’s house for lunch, Mia must face her doubts, her past, and the whole truth.
Runtime: Approximately 90 minutes, with no intermission
Performance & Post-Show Talkback: Saturday, Sept. 16 at 4 p.m.

The Lion Tamer, by Ivan R. Lopez
Directed by Marshall Jones III
Steve, a down-in-the-dumps actor, lands the role of a lifetime — a bizarre gig as the estranged son of billionaire, Joseph Wellington. The old man’s fortune has afforded him a life of ultimate control, but the one thing his money could never buy was his son’s obedience. Will Steve lose himself in the illusion or will he finally learn to play himself? A play about fathers, sons, and the things we inherit.
Runtime: Approximately 105 minutes, with no intermission
Performance & Post-Show Talkback: Saturday, Sept. 16 at 7:30 p.m.

Hrdza, by F.J. Hartland
Directed by Kristen Coury
The year is 1982. In a rust belt town, the closure of a local mill has caused unemployment to skyrocket. Marek Strnad, laid off from the place where his family had worked for generations, now spends his days in long unemployment lines and drinking on credit at the local bar. As the pressure of unemployment takes a growing financial and emotional toll, he must find a new way to take care of his colorful family who are navigating their fair share of both profound and mundane problems. Surrounded by uncertainty, they must discover what matters most in this play about family, pride, and the American dream.
Runtime: Approximately 2 hours 30 minutes, with one intermission
Performance & Post-Show Talkback: Sunday, Sept. 17 at 3 p.m.

In addition to the three winners, Gulfshore Playhouse will also workshop one play that will be developed as a production during the 2023-2024 season:

The Refugees, by Brent Askari
Directed by Marshall Jones III
In the midst of a civil war in the United States, the ultra-WASPy Sutton family from Connecticut – Yates, Poppy, and Wynn – flees the country, ending up in the Middle East. The Sutton’s preppy attire and bland food label them as outsiders, and they find themselves now impoverished and in the minority, having to deal with manual labor, bureaucrats, and social workers. Increasingly desperate to return to the familiarity of Western Civilization, patriarch Yates joins up with a former Wall Street banker, getting involved in a hapless scheme to emigrate to Europe. When the American refugee community erupts in rioting, the Suttons struggle to survive in their adopted new home.
Runtime: Approximately 2 hours 45 minutes, with one intermission
Performance & Post-Show Talkback: Friday, Sept. 15 at 7:30 p.m.

Tickets are available as single tickets or in three- or four-ticket packages, visit to purchase tickets.


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