Nate Eppler - Nashville Rep Ingram New Works Playwright

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As we gear up for our annual Ingram New Works Festival (happening May 6-16, don’t miss it!), we want to introduce you to our three 2014-15 Lab Playwrights: Bianca Sams, Gabrielle Sinclair and Tori Keenan-Zelt. Since October, our lab playwrights have gathered here in Nashville each month with our Resident Playwright Nate Eppler to create, critique, read and write… and rewrite. Mainly to rewrite. And now the final product is almost here! Their months of hard work will be realized with our fabulous Nashville actors giving staged readings of their new plays for you, our wonderful audience. So before you come to the Festival, we want you to get to know our 2014-15 Lab Playwrights. Next up: Nate Eppler.

Nate Eppler Ingram New Works Playwright
Nate Eppler Ingram New Works Playwright

What can you tell us about the 2014-15 Lab Playwrights?

They're three ass-kicking emerging playwrights with dynamic and exciting voices- and they couldn't be more distinct from one another.  Bianca Sams is crafting a realistic play that uses a historical event, a state sponsored European tour of Porgy and Bess, as a jumping off point for a very contemporary examination of race and identity.  Gabby Sinclair’s is a comedy about the fears that go along with the first few months of pregnancy that deftly bends and twists it’s premise into an absurd carnival. Tori Keenan-Zelt’s play starts with generational divide and gentrification and a conflict over living space and then paints on top of that foundation with a surreal exploration of family and loss.  And all of our Lab Playwrights this year are truly emerging; each one at the beginning of what I am sure will be long careers in the field. But don’t wait to get to know their work. Come out and see what they’re up to before they win their Tonys.

What was it like getting to work with Donald Margulies?

Donald Margulies is a playwright I've admired for a very long time and getting to work with him was an incredible experience. It was electric to be in the room with him and listen to him respond to the work of our Lab Playwrights. There’s almost nothing positive for me to say that hasn't already been said about him, just about every accolade you can imagine has been thrown his way and he deserves every single one of them. I can’t wait to hear his new play in May.

What can you tell us about your new play?

The most Infamous Olympic Figure Skater of All Time is trying to sell a screenplay based on her life story.  And Rachel Agee plays the figure skater. What more do I need to tell you? It’s funny and strange and sad (and funny) and very different from some of the other plays I've written while in residence here at The Rep. It started as sort of structural exercise and became something much more connected for me. It’s about getting past the past, and about what happens when you’re the only person who believes you’re the hero in your own story.  I’m very curious to hear what you think of it.

Ready to see The Ice Treatmentand the rest of the new plays in our Ingram New Works Festival? Get all the details, and your tickets, here.