The Vagrancy Playwrights’ Group is a cohort of writers tasked with the goal of developing full-length plays for production. The Vagrancy annually selects a core group of five playwrights representing the diverse perspectives and voices of Los Angeles.
Beginning each fall, the writers meet regularly throughout the year as they craft their plays. The Vagrancy hosts two mid-year development workshops wherein the plays are explored with actors and a director in a rehearsal setting with the playwright. As with the writers, the actors represent the breadth and diversity of Los Angeles. During the workshops, the playwrights are encouraged to take risks and stretch the bounds of theatre in an attempt to continue pushing the art form forward.
The process culminates each summer with BLOSSOMING, a weekend of staged readings of each of the plays performed before an audience. The Vagrancy then selects one of the plays for Play Date, an extended ten day intensive workshop which takes place the following winter.
Vagrant Writers 2019/2020
Tamadhur Al-Aqeel- Writers' Group Tamadhur Al-Aqueel has been a member of Company of Angels since January, 2013. The first play Tamadhur wrote for Company of Angels was The Family Car, (2014) a puppet show that was part of LA Views: Traffic Jam, co-produced and performed at LATC. She was also a puppeteer. She has had a number of short plays produced, and longer plays workshopped, by Company of Angels. Prior to that, Tamadhur co-wrote, with the ensemble of Ghost Road Theatre Company, Four Dervishes, which was performed in 2005 at LATC as part of The Edge of the World Theater Festival. Tamadhur has had a number of plays produced, or co-produced, by Cornerstone Theater Company: In The Bag (2011, One-Minute Play Festival); Branches (2001); The Market Tale (1999); Ride #14 (1997); Family Tales (1996); Shahrazade and the Arabian Nights (1994). Awards include: Golden Mic (2001) for “Best Original Commentary” Division A, Radio and TV News Association of Southern California; Garland Award (2000) for Ensemble Performance, Back Stage West, for For Here or to Go? by Alison Carey, Cornerstone Theater Company at the Mark Taper Forum; Drama-Logue Award for Sound Design, which she shares with her husband, (1994) for Sharazade and the Arabian Nights. Tamadhur has two daughters, for which she animates the voices of all their stuffed animals, makes up silly songs, and is put on the spot every bedtime to come up with something new.
Jaisey Bates - Writers' Group Jaisey Bates writes, directs and performs with her multicultural nomadic theater company, The Peoplehood (the-peoplehood.com). A Princess Grace Award and O'Neill National Playwrights Conference finalist and Kilroys List honorable mention, she is a recipient of the Emerging American Playwright Prize from Marin Theatre Company. Development and performance venues for her plays and spoken word have included theaters in LA, NYC, elsewhere in the U.S. (including the OKC Native American New Play Festival--awarded Judges’ Choice and Featured Play), Canada, and the UK. Her HowlRound blog was selected by the editors as a stand-out blog for the year. Her education includes Georgetown’s School of Foreign Service (BSFS), American University in Cairo (Johns Hopkins SAIS/Fulbright) and Loyola Marymount (MA in English).
Mercedes Segesvary- Writers' Group Mercedes Segesvary is a playwright, comedienne, and fine art illustrator whose work often reflects the clashing of cultures, genders, and generations while painting colorful depictions of congruency within humanity. Her plays have been on stages in many cities including New York, San Francisco, and Los Angeles. After a successful run at the 2008 San Francisco Fringe Festival with her play: Theatre That Moves presents Tips Appreciated,she created Hugi The Great Productions to support and encourage the artistic pursuits of funky little sisters around the world. She received an MFA in Dramatic Writing for Television, Film and Theatre from California State University – Los Angeles.
James Anthony Tyler - Writers' Group James Anthony Tyler is the recipient of the 3rd Annual Horton Foote Playwriting Award and an inaugural playwright to receive a commission from Audible. His plays include Artney Jackson (World Premiere at Williamstown Theatre Festival, 2018 Edgerton Foundation New Play Award), Some Old Black Man (Berkshire Playwrights Lab at St. James Place and 59E59 Theaters), Dolphins and Sharks (LAByrinth Theater Company and Finborough Theatre in London). He has a MFA in Film from Howard University and a MFA in Dramatic Writing from New York University. He is also a graduate of The Juilliard School's Lila Acheson Wallace American Playwrights Program, and currently a staff writer for the new OWN Network show Cherish the Day created by Ava DuVernay
Katherine Vondy - Writers Group Katherine Vondy is a writer and director with credits spanning theater, film, and literature. Kat received the Davey Foundation Theatre Grant for her play The Fermi Paradox, and The Broken Heart of Gnocchi Bolognese, her award-winning short film, has screened at festivals worldwide. The recipient of writing residencies from Palazzo Stabile, the Vermont Studio Center, Starry Night, and Wildacres, Kat's plays have been developed with the HBMG Foundation, Salt Lake Acting Company, Campfire Theatre Festival, Paper Wing Theatre Company, and The Vagrancy (where she currently serves as playwriting group moderator). As a director, credits include Sharyn Rothestein’s Troublemaker for The Pussy Grabber Plays LA Pop-up, Lost Moon Radio’s The Complete Human Experience, All Terrain Theater's Suddenly Split and Swiping Over by Tracy Held Potter, and Jon Caren's Friends In Transient Places with Fresh Produce'd LA. She is a fan of both naps and puns. Find more information about all her creative adventures at katherinevondy.com
PLAY DATE is The Vagrancy’s annual month-long intensive workshop of a new play chosen from our BLOSSOMING reading series. Through the workshop we hope to catapult the play to a place of more secure footing as it progresses towards a full production.