Announcing our 2019-20 LabWorks Artists

1920 LabWorks Group
2019-20 New Victory LabWorks Artists

We’re thrilled to announce our 2019-20 New Victory LabWorks Artists, a roster of NYC artists pursuing the creation of innovative, adventurous new work for young audiences. With the unique opportunity to hold invited rehearsals for New Victory Member families, New Victory LabWorks Artists garner invaluable responses and feedback from their target audience: kids.

“Many of this year’s artists explore the meaning of home and how we find comfort in an uncertain world, a particularly compelling theme when we consider the conflicts young people deal with today,” says Mary Rose Lloyd, Senior Director of Artistic Programming. “New Victory LabWorks encourages artists to dig into big ideas. We want them to make choices as surprising and imaginative as the kids who will see their work.”

New Victory LabWorks has helped develop over 55 projects on their journey to the stage, more than half of which have gone on to become full productions, touring across the country and around the world. By supporting NYC artists and connecting them with the nonprofit’s international community of arts professionals, New Victory expands the canon of family performing arts made in the U.S.

To challenge what theater for kids can be, New Victory selected 11 new artistic teams who will tackle such topics as racism, adoption and masculinity, among others.

The 2019-20 New Victory LabWorks Artists include:

  • In Sheela and the Amazons, ChelseaDee Harrison (In Perpetual Flight: The Migration of the Black Body) deconstructs common perceptions of the Amazons and weaves together powerful stories of matriarchal societies using puppetry, dance, song and original music.
  • Christopher Rudd (2019 John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation Fellow) of RudduR Dance will create Witness, an exploration of America’s racial bias through contemporary dance and technology in a powerful fusion of art and activism.
  • Jess Kaufman (Dear Edwina, ‘SWonderful: The New Gershwin Musical) adapts Randall de Seve’s popular children’s book Mathilda and the Orange Balloon in collaboration with UK-based DH Ensemble to be fully accessible to D/deaf and hearing audiences.
  • Jody Drezner Alperin and Vicky Finney Crouch (Directors, All American Boys 2016), along with Brooklyn’s Off the Page, adapts Kip Wilson’s young adult novel White Rose.
  • Playwright and puppeteer Dan Jones, in collaboration with director Chava Curland, fuses contemporary storytelling, puppetry and mask work to update Ray Bradbury’s popular fantasy novel The Halloween Tree.
  • Andrea Ang (No Place, The Tank’s LadyFest) and Leah Ogawa (Molding, Flushing Town Hall) employ shadow puppetry and movement in Whale Come Home!, an environmentally conscious immersive theatre piece telling the coming-of-age story of a young whale’s empowering quest to return her family back to their ancestral home.
  • Jeanna Phillips and Alex Thrailkill (Cowboy Bob, Secret Supper: The Musical), collaborate with nicHi douglas (where love lies fallow, The Shed; Black Girl Magic Show!) to use a mix of disciplines to immerse audiences in an imaginative, devised world.
  • Trusty Sidekick Theater Company (Up and Away, Shadow Play) bring both the excitement and the hardships of the American frontier to life in Goldrush, combining theater, music, magic and puppetry in this interactive new show that will travel around early childhood classrooms.
  • Tom Costello and Brendan Dalton (previous collaborations at Atlantic for Kids, The Flea Theater, and The Pit) explore the virtues of gentle masculinity through original music, storytelling and the tale of a pregnant seahorse.
  • Sarah Dahnke draws communities together in To Grow a Pomegranate and uses the power of dance and movement to explore immigration, otherness and adoption.
  • Musician and performer Laura Galindo (Fountain, LabWorks 2018-19) leads audiences on a genre-bending musical journey in Annie Aspen’s Musical Space Spectacular!.

New Victory is also excited to continue working with the following returning artists:

  • Composer Faye Chiao (To See the Stars, 2017 OPERA America Female Composer Discovery Award) and playwright Anton Dudley (2012 Lambda Literary Award Finalist) build the musical universe of Baba Yaga and the Firebird.
  • Valerie Clayman Pye and Spellbound Theatre (The World Inside Me, two-time Henson Foundation Family Grant recipients and winner of AATE’s 2017 Zeta Phi Eta-Winifred Ward Outstanding New Children’s Theatre Company Award) use media and Shakespeare’s lyrical text to form Shakespeare’s Stars for the under five set.
  • Hip-hop playwright Aaron Jafferis and composers Rebecca Hart, Yako 440 and Jacinth Greywoode use the four elements of hip-hop to reveal the hidden strengths of vulnerability in How to Break, a compelling take on the layered experience of illness.

Established in 2012, New Victory LabWorks encourages NYC artists to make works that challenge preconceptions commonly held about theater for young audiences. Artists receive a stipend, coveted rehearsal space in the New 42 Studios and exposure to new creative and artistic principles through New Victory’s community of leaders in the field of performing arts for families.

Past New Victory LabWorks projects include Riddle of the Trilobites from CollaborationTown and Cartography from Kaneza Schaal and Christopher Myers – both scheduled to appear this  winter at New Victory Theater – as well as The Abominables from The Civilians, Birdheart from Julian Crouch and Saskia Lane, Laser Beak Man from Dead Puppet Society, Howie D: Back in the Day from Tor Hyams, Lisa St. Lou, and Howard Dorough, Air Play (New Victory 2018) from the Acrobuffos and The World Inside Me from Spellbound Theatre (New Victory 2019).

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