The Chatham Community Players (CCP) in Chatham, NJ has entertained audiences with original one act plays since 1994. That is 106 plays since Cliff Odle started the Jersey Voices One-Act Festival and now they are excited to present their 18th year on Friday and Saturday nights, July 27 and 28 and August 3 and 4 at 8:00 pm.
Each year, New Jersey authors begin to submit their works as soon as the festival ends wanting to be a involved the following year so they can showcase their work. The festival has become a wonderful event where playwrights can test that work in front of an audience to see how it comes alive on the stage in the hands of a director and cast.
"I’m constantly amazed and excited by the creativity, the resilience, the persistence of the Playwrights of New Jersey whose plays we get to present every summer,” said Producer Bob Denmark.
Not to mention how the festival has seen works go from their home to other venues. One of the biggest success stories is the original musical Chick Soup by Janina Serden and Kitt Moran which started at Jersey Voices in 2009 and has been produced up and down the east coast.
This year's list of playwrights are experienced and accomplished writers who will offer audiences dramas to comedies with themes of life, loss, fear, and unconditional love.
Gary Shaffer (The Portrait Gallery) brings his fifth play to Jersey Voices. His one-act plays have been performed in theaters across the country. Also a director, his production of Billy Van Zandt and Jane Milmore’s You’ve Got Hate Mail is touring nationally while entering its third year at NYC’s Triad Theater.
EM Lewis (The Incident Report) received a 2012 Fellowship from the NJ Council for the Arts, and the 2010-2011 Hodder Fellowship at Princeton University. She won the 2009 Steinberg/ATCA New Play Award for Song of Extinction and the 2008 Primus Prize for Heads from the American Theater Critics Association. Her work has been produced around the world, and published by Samuel French. Recent: Song of Extinction at the Guthrie. Current: a commission for Liberty Live at Premiere Stages. Upcoming: playwright-in-residence for New Voices in Richmond, premiere of Goodbye, Ruby Tuesday in St. Louis, and college productions of Heads and Song of Extinction. www.emlewisplaywright.com
Mike Allegra (The Buffer) has had his plays read and performed around the country. He was the winner of the Chameleon Theatre Circle’s 12th Annual New Play Festival and the Atwater Theatre’s One-Act Play Competition, and was the recipient of the New Jersey State Council on the Arts Individual Artist Fellowship. A former journalist for North Jersey Newspapers, Allegra is the editor of The Lawrentian, the nationally award-winning alumni magazine of The Lawrenceville School (Lawrenceville, NJ). His first children’s book, Sarah Gives Thanks, will be released in September by Albert Whitman & Company.
Eric Alter (Children of September) is a playwright, screenwriter and published poet. He is the author of 108 plays, many of which have been produced, performed and published throughout the country. He is the Founder of Apricot Sky Productions a theater company based in Montclair, NJ. Children of September will be published this Fall in PLAYS! The Drama Magazine for Young People.
Mary Jane Walsh (Ping), a member of the Dramatists Guild, had a one-woman show (Finishing It Off!) translated into Spanish which premiered in Montevideo, Uruguay and was performed at the International Festival of Hispanic Theater in Washington, D.C.
Ralph Greco, Jr. (6 in the Kid) is presenting his second play in Jersey Voices. His one act plays have been produced in NJ, NY and Portland, OR.