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For those who come to Costa Mesa...

LeeAnn Dowd

I recently returned from a trip down to my former stomping grounds aka Orange County.



South Coast Repertory, a Tony Award-winning regional theater in Costa Mesa, annually hosts the Pacific Playwrights Festival. Each year, this event presents four staged readings of new plays by established playwrights. A majority of these plays feature prominently into season announcements all over the country.

PPF not only offers a sneak-peek at "plays to know," but also offers the opportunity to see Oscar winner Marisa Tomei wait in line for vegetarian lasagna and free wine.

 #PPF15 Readings


by Qui Nguyen

You Can See It: On the Argyros Stage at SCR; October 4-25, 2015 (directed by May Adrales)

"In a Vietnamese refugee camp in the middle of Arkansas, a man (who plans to catch a plane to Guam and hop a boat back home to Vietnam) meets a woman (who knows there’s no home to go back to) and an unlikely romance begins. Using his hip-hop, comic-book style that Variety calls “infectious fun”—and skipping back and forth from the fall of Saigon to the here and now—Qui Nguyen gets up close and personal to tell the story that led to ... Qui Nguyen."

You Can Also See It: At the Oregon Shakespeare Festival; March 30–Oct. 29, 2016 (directed by May Adrales)


by Bekah Brunstetter

You Can See It: On the Argyros Stage at SCR; March 6-27, 2016 (directed by SCR Artistic Director Marc Masterson)

"Is there a heaven? Joe says no; it’s all a bunch of hokum. His wife, Roberta, has always claimed to agree. But lately she’s beginning to wonder, especially when they find themselves in church a lot, having reached the age when funerals are more frequent than weddings. Their granddaughter, Ellie, doesn’t have time in her own busy life to ponder the after-life. But when mortality confronts them, her grandmother’s claim to have gone to heaven and back doesn’t sound so crazy after all. With thoughtful storytelling and quiet wit, Brunstetter looks at beginnings, endings—and an enigmatic angel."

You Can Also See: Another of Bekah's plays, The Oregon Trail, at Impact Theatre in Berkeley (directed by Ariel Craft) Running Apr 30–Jun 7 [Tickets here]


No production of this play has yet been announced.

"Eli tries to rewrite the life he left behind—but the truth could ruin everything."


You Can Also See: the World Premiere of The Band's Visit at Atlantic Theatre Company; May-June 2016 (directed by 21-time Tony Award® winner Hal Prince, book by Itamar Moses, music & lyrics by David Yazbek) [More info here]

ORANGE: an illustrated play by Aditi Brennan Kapil

No production of the play has yet been announced.

"The fantastic Orange County adventures of an exceptional girl named Leela—as illustrated by herself."

(All play synopses taken from

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Peace out theatre nerds,