Noted Playwright Visits USF
TAMPA, Fla. (Nov. 16, 2009) – Kate Fodor’s play, 100 Saints You Should Know, takes a compassionate look at longing and yearning – feelings aspiring playwrights at the University of South Florida College of The Arts can relate to as they contemplate their futures. They will have the opportunity to learn from Fodor, a successful young playwright flying on the wings of well-earned recognition when she shares her insights with them in a special workshop Nov. 19 from 3 to 6 p.m.
100 Saints You Should Know, developed at Chicago’s Steppenwolf Theatre, had its premiere at New York’s Playwrights’ Horizon, and now is getting its southeast premier at the USF School of Theatre and Dance, through Nov. 22.
The play’s original reviews promise stirring ideas and themes to look forward to in its USF run. Entertainment Weekly hailed it as "One of the ten best plays of 2007.” Time Out New York described it as an “…achingly truthful drama…” The New York Times stated, “Fodor's play glows with the sense that the keenest evidence of the search for God is in the homiest details.” Newsday’s Linda Winer called it, “a play you should know,” and in her 2007 review wrote, “Fodor invents rich characters who speak in their own peculiar rhythms and make observations that defy our expectations…”
Taken with her talent, The New York Times named Fodor one of “Eight to Watch” in the theater world after her first play Hannah and Martin was produced. That play has been mounted in cities around the U.S. and was included in The Susan Smith Blackburn Prize 2004: Six Important New Plays by Women from the 25th Anniversary Year (Smith and Kraus), and excerpted in The Best Men's Stage Monologues of 2003 (Smith and Kraus).
Back from teaching theater and screenwriting at the University of Craiova Romania and the National Theatre in Bucharest, USF instructor Kerry Glamsch, chose and directed the play, making it the highlight of the fall season.
“Returning to the states this summer after a year teaching abroad, I was thrilled to see how, at least among our young people, darkness and pessimism had been outshined by sincerity and hope. Searching for a play to reflect these times… after reading dozens of plays, I stumbled upon 100 Saints You Should Know. I knew immediately it was what I’d been looking for,” he said.
USF students anxiously await the opportunity to work with Fodor.
“I’m excited,” said theater major Samantha Belitch. “I’m very interested in all aspects of theater, but I became interested in playwriting while I was in high school. When I first heard about Kate Fodor coming and the playwriting workshop, I thought it would be a great opportunity to work with someone with that kind of talent.”
Fodor makes her personal appearance on campus thanks to the Macy’s Visiting Artist Endowment. The program invites eminent artists to conduct master classes, lectures, demonstrations or exhibitions on campus and sometimes in the community. The endowment was created between retail department store Burdines-Macy’s of Florida and the College of The Arts, and since 1990 has been providing funding for the disciplines of theater, dance, music and art.
The University of South Florida is one of the nation's top 63 public research universities and one of only 25 public research universities nationwide with very high research activity that is designated as community engaged by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. USF was awarded $380.4 million in research contracts and grants in FY 2008/2009. The university offers 232 degree programs at the undergraduate, graduate, specialist and doctoral levels, including the doctor of medicine. The USF System has a $1.8 billion annual budget, an annual economic impact of $3.2 billion, and serves more than 47,000 students on institutions/campuses in Tampa, St. Petersburg, Sarasota-Manatee and Lakeland. USF is a member of the Big East Athletic Conference.