Staged Reading and Awards Ceremony - Spring 2018

The Stanley Drama Award

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Congratulations to our 2018 Stanley Drama Award winner B.V. Marshall for Incident at Willow Creek.

2018 Stanley Drama Award Winner B.V. Marshall

SYNOPSIS: Incident at Willow Creek

Verité, an African American Professor is at a crossroads. She’s smug about her neutral stance regarding guns; yet, she obsesses over a recent gun incident that resulted in the killing of an innocent black man.  She closely follows the story on TV and radio and is torn between the need to defend oneself and the need to comply with law enforcement. At the same time a student perplexes her with his own fixation on guns. He even offers to teach her how to shoot, and that conflicts with her sense of self. With her own college preparing for security risks, Verité is forced to confront her beliefs, her passive nature and her own physical safety.

B.V. Marshall’s work has been performed and developed at the HBO New Writers Workshop, Theatre for the New City in NYC, Luna Stage, Playwrights Theatre of New Jersey, Interact Theatre in Philadelphia, WBEZ Chicago public radio, the Kennedy Center, the Warner’s International Playwrights, and the Berrie Center at Ramapo College. Most recently, Incident at Willow Creek was awarded the Bauer-Boucher award from Kean University, and a reading of Five Husbands was presented as part of the city of Plainfield’s Gay Pride Celebration. Some of his honors include fellowships from the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation, the Helene Wurlitzer Foundation, The Victor Bumbalo/ Robert Chesley Foundation, the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, the National Endowment for the Humanities and four playwriting fellowships from the New Jersey State Council on the Arts.

Previously a musician and a teacher of English in Middle Eastern countries, Marshall has published poetry, fiction and essays in several literary magazines. Most recently an essay of his appears in the book What Does It Mean to be White in America. He has directed numerous productions and readings including the upcoming musical Harlem Ladies Knittin’ and Bitchin’ Society. A member of the Dramatists Guild, The Playwrights Center in Minneapolis and the Ninth Floor in NYC, Ben earned a BA from Kean University and an MFA in Creative Writing from University of Massachusetts in Amherst after studying playwriting at Hunter University. Associate Professor at Middlesex County College in NJ, he specializes in African American Literature, Creative Writing and Playwriting. The school recently awarded him their scholar of the year for his creative work.

Congratulations to our 2018 finalists!

Nicole Pandolfo for The Belle of Belmar and Stuart Warmflash for Mortar and Pestle

From left to right: Dr. Felicia Ruff, Dr. Lily D. McNair, Nicole Pandolfo, B.V. Marshall, Todd Price (Director of Program), Stuart Warmflash, Dr. Richard Guarasci


Photos by Karen O'Donnell from the Staged Reading & Awards Ceremony on Feb. 12, 2018 at The Players Club

Wagner College President Dr. Richard Guarasci

Wagner College Theatre Department Head Dr. Felicia Ruff

Stanley Drama Award Reader/Presenter Susan Fenley

Stanley Drama Award Reader/Director of Performance Mickey Tennenbaum with Performers Scott Hoke & Wendy Hobbie

Dr. Felicia Ruff awarding 2018 Stanley Drama Award winner B.V. Marshall

Wagner College alumni Jenny Kelly (left) & Melanie Brook (right)