Double (XX) Fest 2.0 Selections Made!


We ended up with 321 plays total (a HEFTY reading feat for our tiny theatre) – narrowed that down to 67 finalists and out of that list were able to accommodate 18 total pieces for our festival this year. Competition was pretty stiff – congratulations to all who submitted and thank you SO much to our readers without whom we could NOT have made our selections in a mostly timely manner…it was the SNOW that prevented us from getting the word out on Jan 20th!

We were also able to pick a couple of alternates if, for some reason, we are unable to produce any of our initial selections.Plays will be running either the weekend of 4/26-29 or 5/3-6 2012 – let the games begin!


Just a Bus Driver by Susan Middaugh, Director: Katie Haster

Blatant Honesty by Catherine Blake Smith, Director: Catherine Blake Smith

The Cleaners by Lindsay Joy Murphy, Director: Lenore Bensinger

Champagne by Britain Valenti, Director: Rebecca Parker-O’Neil

Residue by Susan Sher, Director: Karen Gath McClain

A Gun on the Table by Margy Ragsdale, Director: Zanne Gerard

Smell of Snow by Machelle Allman, Director: Rachel Delmar

Recalculating by L.E. Grabowski-Cotton, Director: Glynis Mitchell

Seen.On.Unseen.The.Lost by Evelyn Jean Pine, Director: Katie Haster

Waiting for the Southwest Chief by Nikala Merrigan, Director: Tina Polzin

Routine Procedure by Catherine Noah, Director: Norene Sterling

It’s Not Really Suicide by Persephone Vandegrift, Director: Julianne Christie

Black Coffee by Deanna Alisa Ableser, Director: Catherine Blake Smith

Close Enough by Kellie Powell, Director: Jessica Stepka

The Bridge by Kate McCamy, Director: Glynis Mitchell

Streakers by Deborah Yarchun, Director: Courtney Meaker

The Best Things In Life Are Money by Megan Cohen, Director: Kaitie Huffman

Saving Deshawn by Emily Kaye Lazzaro, Kaytlin McIntyre


The Tango by Gretchen Smith AND Ice Brothers by Libby Heily

Thanks to all readers:

Norene Sterling – Carolynne Wilcox – Maureen Hawkins
Kristina Hauptfeuhrer – Samantha Sherman – Jessica Stepka
 Katherine Karaus – Persephone Vandegrift
Kaitie Huffman – Lenore Bensinger – Catherine Blake Smith –
Rebecca Parker-O’Neil – Katie Haster – Kirby Lindsay

Hello! From one of the XX Fest Producers:


Just wanted to say hello on the Stone Soup Blog. I’m Catherine Smith, one of the ladies working on XX 2.0. I’m super excited to be a part of the process for a third year. This year, I am proud to have the opportunity to direct two pieces, as well as help to organize the festival.

So far, Carolynne, Katie, and I have worked hard to choose the best submissions for the festival. Each one is a fabulous and smart piece, written by women and to be directed by women. I love that Carolynne is working hard to solidify the presence of women’s theatre in the Seattle area. Now that we’ve chosen the plays, the next step is to decide exactly what the festival will look like. Stay tuned for more updates about the process.


by Carolynne Wilcox, Stone Soup Theatre PR Manager

Though producers and designers have been hard at work for some time on Horton Foote’s Young Man From Atlanta, we finally had our official cast and crew meeting/rehearsal Monday January 9.

Stage Manager Chris Scofield (How I Learned to DriveFool For LoveDurang7, etc) Director Maureen Hawkins (Durang7PlayFest4) welcomed everyone to the fold, with a description of the set we’d be using and some useful information about Horton Foote as well as the play itself.

We also heard from sound designer Lindsey Morck (Double (XX) Fest 2011, Compleat Works)  about her proposed use of piano music to correlate to the playing of one of the main characters (Lily Dale, played by Stone Soup Artistic Director Maureen Miko, evenings and Maggie Heffernan, matinees)as well as costume designer Savannah Baltazar (Fool For Love, Durang7, etc) about her ideas for early 50’s period styles in the American South (more to come on that in February 2012 newsletter!).

After that, we read through the script (while intermittently nibbling on the gooey chocolate delights brought by the director), finding it to be poignant, subtle, and unexpectedly humourous throughout. Actor Gordon Coffey brought the perfect grumpy yet anxious vibe to Will Kidder that had us all tittering the whole way through, though most of the situations in the piece are not “funny ha-ha”. And of course, the supporting cast brought their own a-games to the fold.

Along with the quiet intensity of Foote’s words and rhythms, all elements should make for a particularly heartfelt, identifiable show, not without its own brand of laughs. And not surprising, either: the play won the 1995 Pulitzer Prize for drama, while Foote himself has won numerous writing awards himself, most notably Academy Awards in screenwriting for Tender Mercies and To Kill A Mockingbird.

“I believe very deeply in the human spirit…because I don’t know how people carry on. I’ve known people that the world has thrown everything at to discourage them, to kill them, to break their spirit. And yet something about them retains a dignity. They face life and they don’t ask quarters.” – Horton Foote

The Young Man From Atlanta previews February 15, and also features the talents of Eva Abram, John Clark (Fool For Love), Jaryl Draper (How I Learned to Drive) Matthew Gilbert (Compleat Works), Maggie Heffernan, Maria Knox, Zachariah Robinson (Durang7, How I Learned to Drive, etc), Suzi Tucker, Michael Way (Double (XX) Fest 2011) and Carolynne Wilcox (PlayFest 3 & 4, A Child’s Christmas in Wales, etc).  Tickets available for purchase here or by calling the box office 206.633.1883.

Double (XX) Fest 2.0: The Journey Begins

The Reading and Selection Process

by Carolynne Wilcox, Double (XX) Fest 2.0 Curator

Shortly after a very successful inaugural Double (XX) Fest last spring, we once again began the task of calling for new play submissions from female playwrights.

After announcements were posted in playwriting publications both print and online around the region, country and world, the scripts started to pour in. What started as a trickle of submissions in summer and early fall ended up in what, by the deadline (Dec 14), felt like Niagara Falls coming towards us with 300 plus submissions from every corner of the globe!

Since October 2011, a bunch of us have been busy little reader bees. The theatre was fortunate again, this year, to have LOTS of reading help, and we wish to thank Kristina Hauptfeuhrer, Samantha Sherman, Kirby Lindsay, Norene Sterling, Jessica Stepka, Rebecca Parker O’Neil, Lenore Bensinger, Kaitie Huffman and MOST ESPECIALLY Persephone Vandegrift, Katherine Karaus, Maureen Hawkins, Katie Haster and Catherine Smith for their HERCULEAN efforts with that reading task.

This week, the selection committee (Carolynne Wilcox, Catherine Smith and Katie Haster) will make final script selections. 16-20 short plays (15 minutes or less) will be chosen from the final tier of 67 scripts!

Stay tuned…