We are pleased to welcome composer/lyricist Helen Park, playwright Rajiv Joseph, and playwright Samuel D. Hunter to the Dramatists Guild Council! We are also excited to welcome playwright Andrew Creech (representing the Western Region) and playwright Diana Burbano (representing Southern California and Hawaii).
The Guild is governed by a board of directors (Council) elected from its membership. These writers, in various stages of their theatrical careers, meet monthly to decide policy for the Guild. The Dramatists Guild Council is led by four officers, who are elected from within the Council ranks. The current slate of officers is comprised of Amanda Green (President), Branden Jacobs-Jenkins (Vice President), Kristoffer Diaz (Secretary) and Christine Toy Johnson (Treasurer).
Helen Park is best known for her work as composer-lyricist, music producer, and arranger for the Broadway musical, KPOP, for which she is a three-time Drama Desk nominee and recipient of a Lucille Lortel Award and Richard Rodgers Award. Additionally, Park co-wrote songs for the Oscar-nominated Netflix animated musical film Over The Moon, directed by Academy Award-winning animator Glen Keane. She has written songs for Off-Broadway’s Sesame Street: The Musical and for television on Central Park on Apple TV. She holds an MFA from NYU’s Graduate Musical Theatre Writing Program and is an alumnus of the advanced BMI Lehman Engel Musical Theater Workshop.
Rajiv Joseph's play Bengal Tiger at the Baghdad Zoo was a 2010 Pulitzer Prize finalist for Drama and also awarded a grant for Outstanding New American Play by the National Endowment for the Arts. He has twice won the Obie Award for Best New American Play, first in 2016 with Guards at the Taj (also a 2016 Lortel Winner for Best Play) and then in 2018 with Describe the Night.
Other plays include King James, Letters of Suresh, Archduke, The North Pool, Gruesome Playground Injuries and Animals Out of Paper. He wrote the book and co-wrote lyrics for the musical Fly, based on Peter Pan, and he wrote the libretto for the opera Shalimar the Clown, based on the novel by Salman Rushdie. He has written for TV and film, most recently for the Hulu series Welcome to Chippendales. He has been awarded artistic grants from the Whiting Foundation, United States Artists, and the Harold & Mimi Steinberg Charitable Trust. He served for three years in the Peace Corps in Senegal.
Samuel D. Hunter grew up in Moscow, Idaho, and lives in New York City. He is the recipient of a 2014 MacArthur “Genius Grant” Fellowship for his work as a playwright. His full-length plays include The Whale (Drama Desk Award, Lucille Lortel Award for Outstanding Play, GLAAD Media Award, Drama League and Outer Critics Circle nominations for Best Play), A Case for the Existence of God (New York Drama Critics’ Circle Award for Best Play), A Bright New Boise (Obie Award, Drama Desk nomination for Best Play), Greater Clements (Drama Desk nomination for Best Play, Outer Critics Circle Honoree), Lewiston/Clarkston (Drama Desk nomination for Best Play), The Few, A Great Wilderness, Rest, Pocatello, The Healing, and The Harvest, among others. A film version of The Whale, directed by Darren Aronofsky and starring Brendan Fraser, was released by A24 films. He is the recipient of a 2012 Whiting Writers Award and an honorary doctorate from the University of Idaho. His work has been produced Off Broadway in New York City by Lincoln Center Theatre, Playwrights Horizons, LCT3, Signature Theatre, Page 73 Productions, Clubbed Thumb, and Rattlestick Playwrights Theatre. Elsewhere, his work has been produced by Theatre Royal Bath, Dallas Theatre Center, Seattle Rep, Denver Center for the Performing Arts, Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company, South Coast Rep, and Victory Gardens, among others. Two published anthologies of his work are available from TCG Books, and a third is forthcoming. He is a member of New Dramatists and a current Resident Playwright at the Signature Theatre in New York City. He holds degrees in playwriting from NYU, The Iowa Playwrights Workshop, and Juilliard.
Andrew Creech is an award-winning writer, performer, and content creator, currently based in Seattle, WA. He is the creator of The Legacy Plays Project—a nine-play, multi-century-spanning meditation on the lives and journeys of Black Americans during pivotal moments of American History. Awards/Nominations: 2022 Semifinalist—Blue Ink Award, 2021 Winner and 2020 Finalist—Ashland New Plays Festival, 2021 Recipient—Grants for Artists' Progress Award, 2018 Recipient—4Culture Art Projects Grant, 2018 Gregory Awards People’s Choice Nominee for Outstanding New Play, 2014 Gypsy Rose Lee Award Nominee for Excellence in Performance of a Play as a Supporting Actor. Commissions: Currently working on a three-play commission from ACT Theatre and Trial & Error Productions. His plays have been produced with companies including: Seattle Public Theater, Copious Love Productions, and Radial Theater Project, and have been workshopped, presented with ACT Theatre, and more. As a performer, Andrew has been on many major Seattle stages including: Seattle Repertory Theatre, ACT Theatre, Seattle Shakespeare Company, and Seattle Children’s Theatre. As a content creator, under the names “AndrewThaScribe” and "Papadontcreech," he has built a community of over 90,000 followers across all social media platforms, where he is known for his theatre industry analysis and hit comedy series Breaking News! Andrew holds a BFA in Theatre from Cornish College of the Arts. He is a proud member of both the Dramatists Guild of America and Actors' Equity Association. He’s passionate about telling stories which privilege a Black lens, create lead roles for Black actors, and add more Black narratives to the American theatre canon. Also, he's a full-time cat dad.
Diana Burbano was named as part of the Los Angeles Times “La Vanguardia” 2022. She is a Colombian immigrant, a playwright, an Equity actor, and a teaching artist. Diana’s play Ghosts of Bogotá premiered at Alter Theatre in 2020, just before the pandemic shutdown. Ghosts was produced at the Actors Theatre of Charlotte in 2022. Sapience opened at Moxie Theatre in San Diego in 2022. Fabulous Monsters, a Latinx Punk Rock play, will premiere at The Public Theatre of San Antonio, featuring the music of FEA, in 2023. She was in the Geffen’s Writers Lab in 20-21 and has commissions with Center Theatre Group, Artists Repertory Theatre, Breath of Fire Latina Theatre Ensemble, HERO Theatre, and Livermore Shakespeare Festival. Residencies include Marfa Live Arts, Milagro Ingenio, Workshop Theatre Lab at Echo Theatre, and the Mercury Company for Artists Repertory. As an actor, Diana played Amalia in Jose Cruz Gonzales' American Mariachi at South Coast Repertory and Arizona Theatre Company, Marisela in Isaac Gomez’s La Ruta at Artists Repertory, and Izzy in the world premiere of Julie Hébert’s Drunk at the Base of the Bohdi Tree for Mile High Theatre. You can also see her as Viv the Punk in the cult musical Isle of Lesbos. Diana has been awarded the Advance Gender Equity in the Arts grant 2022, the Bay Area Rella Lossy Award, the Long Beach Arts Council Professional Artist Grant 2019, 2020, and was a 2021 Jane Chambers Awardee for excellence in Feminist Playwriting.