Friday, December 09, 2016

Nutcracker, Sweet!

This month we celebrate the holidays PlayGround-style with bold and irreverent interpretations on that most traditional of holiday entertainments, The Nutcracker! Playwrights can draw for their inspiration from the original E.T.A. Hoffman story, Alexander Dumas’ adaptation, Tchaikovsky’s score and ballet, Duke Ellington’s musical adaptation of Tchaikovsky’s score, and more! The top six short works will be presented as script-in-hand staged readings on Monday, December 19 at Berkeley Rep. For tickets and discount flex passes, visit

Each month, PlayGround announces a topic to the thirty-six playwrights in the PlayGround Writers Pool and the writers have four-and-a-half days to generate original ten-minute scripts inspired by the topic. Recent topics have included: “We Hold These Truths to be Self-Evident,” “Artificial Intelligence,” and “Awakening to the Dream of the Earth” as part of a now-three-year collaboration with Planet Earth Arts and Stanford University. The top six plays from each month are rehearsed for just one-and-a-half hours each and presented as script-in-hand staged readings at Monday Night PlayGround, now celebrating its twenty-third year. PlayGround audiences get to enjoy a unique behind-the-scenes perspective, with a free Pre-Performance Discussion at 7:10pm.  Audience members can also experience the thrill of being a producer through the monthly People’s Choice Awards, helping to determine which plays and playwrights go on for consideration in PlayGround’s annual showcase, the Best of PlayGround Festival.

PlayGround, the Bay Area’s leading playwright incubator, provides unique development opportunities for the Bay Area’s best new playwrights, including the monthly Monday Night PlayGround staged reading series, annual PlayGround Festival of New Works, full-length play commissions and support for the production of new plays by local playwrights through the New Play Production Fund. To date, PlayGround has supported over 200 local playwrights in the development and staging of more than 800 original short plays and 71 new full-length plays, with 8 more commissions currently in development. PlayGround also operates Potrero Stage (formerly Thick House), a black box theatre in San Francisco’s Potrero Hill neighborhood, currently undergoing renovations and re-opening in late January 2017. For more information, visit

WHAT: Occurring monthly, September-March, the popular Monday Night PlayGround series presents staged readings of thematically-connected short works by the Bay Area’s best new playwrights each month at Berkeley Repertory Theatre, staged by leading local professional actors and directors.  The given topic for the December 19  PlayGround Holiday Extravaganza is “Nutcracker, Sweet!”.

WHERE: Berkeley Repertory Theatre, 2025 Addison St, Berkeley, CA

WHEN: Monday, December 19, 2016 at 8pm
Additional Season Dates:
January 16, 2017 – S.T.E.M. Night
February 20, 2017 - Social Justice Night
March 20, 2017 – WomenArts Night

TICKETS: Tickets are $15 general admission ($30, priority seating) online in advance and $20 general admission at the door, subject to availability. 5-admission flex passes are just $75 and include priority seating.  For more information about the Monday Night PlayGround series, call (415) 992-6677 or visit


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