From: Young Playwrights' Theater [eandrews@yptdc.org]
Sent: Friday, December 04, 2009 10:10 AM
To: Rachael Swann
Subject: YPT Wire December 2009 - Meet Karen Ocon
December Masthead

The Newsletter of Young Playwrights' Theater

In This Issue
YPT Acting Students Explore Power Dynamics
YPT One of the Best Small Charities in Region
Intergalactic Bullies Take the Stage
Karen Ocon: Promising Playwright
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Issue: # 38 Dec 2009
YPT Acting Students Explore Power Dynamics
Karen and NathanThis semester, seven high school students have been working in the Young Playwright's Workshop to create characters through physical and vocal improvisation.  Working with YPT Teaching Artists Patrick Crowley and Rachael Swann, they have created scenes that examine power within relationships.  Their creations range from children to corporate bosses, dinner party guests to street hawkers.  Their piece Diverse Shorts will be shared in a special late night performance following New Writers Now! on Monday, December 7th at approximately 8:30 PM. 
 
"This semester we've worked to teach our young actors to have confidence on stage," says Associate Director Patrick Torres.  "We've challenged them to use their imaginations to create characters and scenarios that are compelling to audiences." 
 
The Young Playwrights' Workshop meets afterschool Tuesday-Thursday at YPT and offers instruction in acting and playwriting. Applications will be available soon for the Spring Semester to begin in late January.  
YPT One of the Best Small Charities in Region
 Catalogue for Philanthropy 
Young Playwrights' Theater is proud to announce that we have been chosen by a panel of 90 expert reviewers for inclusion in the 2009 - 2010 Catalogue for Philanthropy: Greater Washington. Selected from a field of nearly 240 organizations, the Catalogue calls YPT "one of the best small charities in the Washington, DC region."
 
Click here to check our online profile on the Catalogue website.
Intergalactic Bullies Take the Stage
 
Playing with Fire
Students at George Washington Middle School in Alexandria, Virginia were asked to explore the topic of bullying in the plays they created with YPT's In-School Playwriting program.  Kamera Bracey put her own spin on the assignment.
 
"This is not a democracy, this is a Kingocracy!" a tyrant on an unknown planet declares. Kamera's play explores bullying on an intergalactic level, challenging us to consider the ramifications of bullying behavior beyond the schoolyard.
 
On Monday night, Kamera's play will be performed along with three others at our latest New Writers Now! presentation.   
 
Playing with Fire
New Writers Now!
 
Monday
December 7th, 2009
 
6:15 Reception
7:00 Performance 
 
FREE and open to the public
 
For more information, including a complete listing of plays, click here.
Karen Ocon
Karen OconPromising Playwright
 
"My character is like me in some ways. She says funny stuff. She asks random questions," says Karen Ocon, "but then, she's also straightforward. She speaks her mind. She is direct with her anger."
 
Karen is speaking of Yuuki, the heroine of The Vampire Prophecy, a play she has written through YPT's In-School Playwriting Program.  Karen enjoys vampires, but is not particularly interested in the Twilight series. She is more inspired by Japanese animation and events from her own life.  Her advice to other aspiring playwrights is to "think of the moments in your life that were sad or happy, that give you passion, and try to write something from that."
 
Karen is in the 11th grade at Bell Multicultural High School. She dreams of going to college to study criminology and become a CIA agent. She lives in the District of Columbia with her parents and her two brothers.  "I don't always share my writing with them," Karen says. "I'm too shy about it."  
 
Karen may identify herself as "shy" and "quiet" and her character as "outspoken," but lately Karen's been learning to express herself through the acting classes YPT offers as part of the Young Playwrights' Workshop.  "Acting is great because it helps me discover things I didn't know about myself," Karen says.  "It feels good to let that inner voice of me come out."

For more Promising Playwrights click here.
Young Playwrights' Theater
2437 15th Street NW
Washington, DC 20009 
202-387-9173
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