February 2021 Online Workshop

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Anna Storm

Anna is a writer and editor who graduated Summa Cum Laude from George Washington University in 2012 with a B.A. in English and Creative Writing. She earned the GW Creative Writing Department’s award for the best senior thesis in fiction before going on to work a number of jobs in the entertainment industry: as a production assistant, entertainment journalist, trainee at a top talent agency, and creative development assistant, among other roles. She has placed twice in two different ScreenCraft screenwriting competitions. She currently resides in Los Angeles, where she can be found hunched over her laptop while munching on chocolate, spooning peanut butter, or both.

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Julia Pearlstein

Julia Pearlstein’s plays have been developed and produced at Mabou Mines, Dixon Place, Theater for the New City, Evidence Room, the Black Dahia, Echo Theater, Clubbed Thumb and Bilkent University in Turkey. Full-length plays include RAT BASTARDS (Tutti Stronzi), a new commedia on an old theme, which was produced at Dixon Place in conjunction with the Festival of Jewish Theater and Ideas, with sets and projections by Philip Pearlstein. RAT BASTARDS was originally developed at the Mabou Mines/Suite Resident Artist Program, which presented a workshop directed by Wendy McClellan and starring Everett Quinton of the Ridiculous Theatrical Company. It was nominated for the National Theater Conference 2010 Stavis Playwrights Award by Mabou Mines and was a finalist for the New Jewish Theater Projects grant. Julia’s play PLINKO; or, The Goddess of Static Cling was seen at Theater for the New City, featuring Everett Quinton and John Fleck; PLINKO was workshopped by the Echo Theater Company, had a reading at the Black Dahlia, and was a finalist for the Julie Harris Playwriting Award and the Eileen Heckart Senior Drama Competition. Half Past, a multimedia play with songs, for which she received an American Repertory Theater LAB grant, has had readings at The Flea in New York and at the Historical Society of Peterborough, NH; Half Past was a finalist for the Seven Devils Playwrights Conference and the Shenandoah Playwrights’ Retreat, and received a developmental workshop at Dixon Place featuring alumni of the A.R.T. Institute. Julia was commissioned to write three short plays for director Daniel Irizarry of OneEighth Theater which were performed at Bilkent University in Ankara, Turkey, and at a festival in Cyprus in 2018. She is working on a commission for One-Eighth in 2021. Other short plays include Even the Sky Is Blue (Clubbed Thumb, SALAAM, and the Triangle Theater in Raleigh, NC), Tiny Lives (the L.A. Forum), and Elevator for the One-Minute Play Festival at Manhattan Theater Club. Her solo performance pieces include Karma’s Bitch (Dixon Place) and Gynosaurus Regina (dir. Andrei Belgrader, Evidence Room). Julia has been an Artist-in-Residence at Dixon Place and Mabou Mines/Suite, and a visiting playwright at Ohio University. She has received fellowships from the MacDowell Colony (twice), Yaddo, the Wurlitzer Foundation, and was an alternate for the Bogliasco Foundation; she has received grants from the Buchbinder Foundation and the Bruce Weber/Nan Bush Foundation. Her playwriting teachers have included Deb Margolin, Eduardo Machado, Charles Mee, Corey Fischer, Leon Martell, Lee Breuer, Karen Hartman and Liz Duffy Adams. As an actor, Julia has worked with directors Charles Ludlam, Anne Bogart, Tina Landau, Andrei Serban, Robert Wilson, and many others. Julia is an alumna of the American Repertory Theatre Institute at Harvard, has a BA from Yale, trained in commedia with Dario Fo, and was a member of the legendary Ridiculous Theatrical Company under Charles Ludlam.

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Kevin Hanna

Kevin Hanna reluctantly started his comedy career when he realized all of his dramatic work sucked. It was genuinely terrible. And if his comedy pilot Public Access winning the Gold Medal for its treatment at the World Series of Screenwriting, 2nd Place for TV pilots at The Indie Gathering and Cinerockom film festivals, and the script most recently placing in the Top 100 for Table Read My Screenplay Austin 2020 is any indication, he made the right move. If he had to describe his work in a phrase or two, it would be that NOTHING is impossible, and life is absurd. Which is why he is a staunch believer that all rabbits speak and understand French, and will only speak to them in French because, of course, they will understand him. Maybe it’s the sad resignation about his incurable optimism that drove him to comedy, who knows. But still feeling like the world is a ridiculous, wonderful, inscrutable place, in spite of the terribleness currently in it, perhaps, is the thing that got him through 2019. After almost 24 years, he left his husband and became a single adult for the first time in his life. Every day since he moved out, he has done something new, large or small that he’s never done before. The world is new again, and so is he. His weird superpower is finding things at thrift stores. Guaranteed, no matter how strange, if you ask him to find something, within ONE YEAR, he will have it.

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Karyn Peyton

Karyn has held support staff roles in writers’ rooms at AMC and Showtime. She wrote on an indie doc series about police misconduct and wrongful conviction, worked with the Department of State to implement sustainability programs in Lithuania, and made a guerilla-style documentary that severed a school’s relationship with a psychiatric hospital. She designed pitch materials that won SeriesFest’s pitch-a-thon. She has poetry forthcoming in Kissing Dynamite and two anthologies from Z Publishing. She studied English at University of Chicago and Oxford University as a first-generation student and Odyssey Scholar.

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Hal Carlton-Ford

Hal Carlton-Ford is a NYC-based writer-director-producer hailing from Cincinnati, OH. In theater and film, Carlton-Ford’s work focuses on trauma and ideological divisions between people who share an unacknowledged common ground as metaphors for the spiritual crisis in America today. Carlton-Ford’s darkly comedic screenplays include Bath of Styx, in which a girl role-plays her dead cousin for the cousin’s grieving parents; Circle K, a comedy about human trafficking and worker exploitation in rural Ohio; and Judas, a parable about an ICE officer who comes to believe he’s impounding Jesus himself in an ICE detainment center.
As a playwright and theater director, Carlton-Ford is a proud partner of the Acting Studio — New York and the Chelsea Rep Lab, where his latest play Duck, Duck, Goose premiered. As a cinematographer and gaffer, Carlton-Ford’s work has played at the Cannes Film Festival (Writing the Big One), Venice Film Festival (The Fits), Sundance and more.
Before he began making films, Carlton-Ford received a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Cincinnati’s Department of Classics with a focus in Greek Tragedy. His background in the classics informs his writing in content and form today.

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Edward Smythe

In a previous life, Ed worked in finance before repenting and moving left into the London think-tank space. He’s had a life long passion for film and what makes a compelling story. His favourite genre is sci-fi that asks the big questions about who we are, and has been working on ideas in this space for over a decade. His current project aims to explore our capacity to determine our own futures, and our ability to change. Side interests include mindfulness, the problem with economics and Abraham Lincoln.

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Barrett Edmonds

Barrett Edmonds is a San Francisco based filmmaker. Born in Sacramento, he is a graduate of the Film and Digital Media program at UC Santa Cruz. He served as director, producer and editor on his first two short films, “Ahh… San Francisco” and “A Million Times Before,” which together were selected for over 30 film festivals internationally. A sixth-generation Californian descended from Gold Rush prospectors, he draws inspiration from his home of San Francisco and seeks to craft and curate stories that can only exist in this underutilized locale. His first short, “Ahh… San Francisco,” is an adaptation of a local newspaper column from legendary journalist Herb Caen, narrated by Bay Area native Peter Coyote.