New Play Reading Series

The New Play Reading Series is a unique collaboration that brings undergraduate and graduate students together in a repertory company to produce three staged readings of contemporary plays. The Spring 2020 Series features an exciting partnership with Z Space, a professional theatre company in San Francisco.

Working alongside graduate students from the Department of Theater, Dance, and Performance Studies, undergraduate company members will get a taste of the early stages of new play development, will have opportunities to meet and work with emerging playwrights and directors, and will perform in staged readings open to the public.

Spring 2020 Readings

Human Museum by Miyoko Conley

Wednesday, February 12, 5:30–7:30pm

B4 Dwinelle Hall, UC Berkeley

Set in a future where humans have gone extinct, Human Museum follows a group of robots on Earth that run a museum dedicated to organizing the physical and digital artifacts of human life. On the centenary of human extinction, a sudden radio call upends everything the robots thought they knew about the last days of humanity.


Sombras, Nada Mas by Megan Xotchilt Espinoza

Wednesday, March 4, 5:30–7:30pm

B4 Dwinelle Hall, UC Berkeley

Bienvenida is undergoing the transition between a life where she suffered from dementia and a death where she is able to remember everything. We journey through her granddaughter, Soledad's, and her relationship in time to understand when the forgetting began. As a grandmother-becoming-ancestor, she confronts what she was taught to never speak on: the truth.


A Subtlety: The Sugar Play by Adrianna Mitchell and Akilah Walker

Canceled Due to Campus Closure

A sugar refinery in Brooklyn is scheduled to be demolished. It houses Kara Walker's "Marvelous Sugar Baby," a voluptuous Mammy-Sphinx sculpture made entirely of (you guessed it)... sugar. Two black women, eager to unravel sugar's not-so-sweet history, visit the Marvelous Sugar Baby for some answers, but the magical fever dream that ensues is beyond anything they could ever imagine.

A Subtlety: The Sugar Play pays homage to our black ancestors who supplied the goods for America's sweet tooth, and it explores how Black American bodies today are still being consumed.


Course Details

Theater 98: New Play Reading Series

Spring 2020, 1 Unit P/NP

Graduate Student Instructors:

Miyoko Conley

Matthew Jamison

Rebecca Struch

2013–2014 New Play Reading Series
2016 New Play Reading Series | Photo by Alessandra Mello