WOSU Theatre Critic Joy Reilly talks with visiting playwright Betty Shemiah.
Betty Shamieh is a Palestinian-American playwright, author, screenwriter, and actress. She is the author of 15 plays.
As a playwright, her off-Broadway premieres are The Black Eyed (New York Theatre Workshop) and Roar (The New Group), which was selected as a New York Times Critics Pick and is currently being taught at universities throughout the United States. Her recent European productions in translation include Again and Against (Playhouse Teater, Stockholm), The Black Eyed (Theater Fournos, Athens), and Territories (co-production of the Landes-Theatre and the 2009 European Union Capital of Culture Festival). The Machine was produced by Naked Angels and directed by Marisa Tomei.
She was the 2009 artist-in-residence at Het Zuidelijk Toneel of Holland, where her play, Free Radicals, is slated for production in Dutch translation in 2011. Her comedy, As Soon as Impossible, was commissioned as part of the Time Warner Commissioning program. In 2007, she was the NEA/TCG playwright-in-residence at the Magic Theatre, where The Black Eyed and Territories had their world premieres. Her latest solo work, The Alter-Ego of an Arab-American Assimilationist, has been developed by the 2009 Hip Hop Theatre Festival and Voice & Vision.
Betty Shemiah recently ran workshops at The Ohio State University’s Theatre Department.