by CN Smith
Feb 16-Mar 10, 2024
Thu – Sat @ 7:30pm, Sun @ 2pm
White fragility simmers in the wake of Black success.
Three white Irish men meet at their childhood athletic field to catch up, drink, and discuss the recent Olympic success of their former Black friend, Amir. Their vulnerabilities, jealousies, and perceived failures seethe below the surface as they recall their teenage years. In a parallel reality, the young men wrestle with flashes of the past when they enact scenes from Amir’s diary.
Recommended for ages 15 and up.
Season sponsor: Ronni Lacroute
About the Playwright
CN Smith is a playwright and director from County Louth, Ireland. He was a recipient of The Lir Academy’s Patricia Leggett Playwriting Scholarship for 2020, allowing him to complete his MFA. His play Spear was a Dublin Fringe Festival commission for 2022, and was presented at Smock Alley. An excerpt of his play Corktown was presented as part of the 2023 Trans-Atlantic Commissions readings in New York, San Francisco and Los Angeles.
“Spear is a play about race, mediocrity, and misunderstanding. It was born out of a recognition of (and frustration with) the prevalence of one-hander confessional plays written by non-white people about our trauma. I recognised the immediate value these plays provided both for the artists and for audiences – the stories they allowed to be shared, the visions they platformed, and the solidarity they allowed to be built. However, their prevalence raised some questions for me, chief among them being: Why do white people love them so much? And why are we so quick to put our bodies and traumas under the microscope for their entertainment? Aren’t they the ones who should be examined? I then began to think about whether there might be a way to explore the same themes present in all of that great confessional work while also attempting to answer those questions for myself. Spear was written as an effort to thread that needle. It follows three friends as they drink in a field and read passages from their former friends’ diary.”
* Member of Actors’ Equity Association, the Union of Professional Actors and Stage Managers in the United States, appearing under a Special Appearance Contract.
Nicole Marie Green
Nicole Marie Green (She/Her) is a New York native new to the Portland theatre scene moving recently from Kansas City, MO, where she received her masters degree in acting and directing from University of Missouri, Kansas City. Most recently Nicole was seen in The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time as the dance captain and Voice 1 at Portland Center Stage at the Armory. Other theatre credits include: Voice 1 in Curious Incident, Belle in A Christmas Carol, Lydia and Lady Catherine in Kate Hamill’s Pride and Prejudice, Margot in The Diary of Anne Frank (Kansas City Repertory Theatre), Ruth in Tribes (Unicorn Theatre), Emilia and Time in The Winter’s Tale (Heart of America Shakespeare Festival), Dorothy and The Wicked Witch in The Wizard of Oz (Meisner Puppet Theatre), Governess in Turn of the Screw (Spinning Tree Theatre), Edward Tulane, originating the role of Abigail Williams in Afflicted: Daughters of Salem (The Coterie Theatre) among many more. Nicole is a proud member of Actors’ Equity.
Sara Hennessy (she/hers) is a two-time Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle Award winner and an L.A. Weekly Theatre Award nominee. This is her third show at Corrib after having been in How to Keep an Alien and Little Gem previously. She’s been in several shows at Artists Rep (ART) including 1984, Everybody, Magellanica, Caught, Feathers and Teeth, The Skin of Our Teeth, Cuba Libre, Blithe Spirit, Intimate Apparel and Foxfinder. During the pandemic, she worked on several ART Mercury projects including the Magellanica audio drama, and two workshop productions: The Night We Won by Yussef El Guindi and Rudy, a 5-part comic series about a small Oregon town. Before moving to Portland, she lived in Los Angeles, where she was a co-founder and Co-Artistic Director of the acclaimed Furious Theatre Company. In addition to doing many shows at Furious Theatre, Sara worked at the Pasadena Playhouse, A Noise Within, and Theatre@ Boston Court. In Chicago, she performed improv at the iO Theatre. She also made appearances on NBC’s Grimm and the Netflix series Trinkets. She is a proud member of Actors’ Equity Association and the Screen Actors Guild. sarahennessy.com
Wynee Hu (she, her, hers) is excited to be returning to Corrib Theatre! Past credits: Hurl and Eclipsed. She was recently an understudy for The Great Leap, co-produced by Portland Center Stage and Artists Repertory Theatre. She has also worked with Northwest Children’s Theater, Bag&Baggage Productions, Boom Arts, Advance Gender Equity in the Arts (AGE), LineStorm Playwrights, PDX Playwrights, Speculative Drama, Oregon Adventure Theatre, and Exoplanetary Media. Wynee is an associate producer for Lunchbox, an independent film (lunchboxthefilm.com). She was an Emerging Artist in the 2021 Spring Cohort of Advance Gender Equity in the Arts’ IGNITE program.
Cynthia Shur Petts
Cynthia Shur Petts (she/her) is an actor, writer, comedian, and teaching artist. She is happy to return to Corrib Theatre, where she previously played Rusty in Hurl. Other Portland credits include A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Anonymous Theatre) and a reading of Lisa Kron’s solo piece 101 Humiliating Stories (Profile Theatre). She worked for many years in Chicago storefront theatres, and has performed as a comedian and storyteller at clubs and bars all over Chicago, and at festivals around the country. Cynthia has taught workshops in writing and performing at local companies including Portland Center Stage, From the Ground UP, and PlayWrite, Inc. She is a staff member and company member with Third Rail Repertory Theatre.
Holly Griffith (she/her) has worked as an actor, director, writer, and theatre educator for over a decade. Her career began in Tucson Arizona where she was a resident actor at The Rogue Theatre and an Artistic Associate at Scoundrel & Scamp Theatre. Holly recently recently earned an MFA in Theatre Directing from The Lir Academy in Dublin Ireland, where she collaborated with artists from all over Ireland and Europe. In her new role as Artistic Director, Holly hopes to enrich Corrib’s connections to communities both locally and globally whose stories are represented on our stages, and to use our resources to examine the intersectionality of Irish identity.
Born in Dublin in 1969, Emma Donoghue is a writer of drama for stage, screen, and radio, as well as fiction short and long, contemporary and historical. Among her works for the stage are I Know My Own Heart (1993), Ladies and Gentlemen (1996), Trespasses (1997), Kissing the Witch (2000), Don’t Die Wondering (2005), Room (2010), The Talk of the Town (2012), and Signatories (2016). Her novels include The Pull of the Stars, The Wonder (her film adaptation is coming soon from Netflix, starring Florence Pugh) and Room (which she adapted into a play as well as a film nominated for four Academy Awards). Her new novel Haven, coming in August, is set on Skellig Michael around the year 600.
Kyra Sanford is a freelance scenic designer, props master, carpenter, and painter in the Portland area, working for theatres such as Milagro, PassinArt, Theatre Vertigo, Defunkt Theatre, Profile Theatre, Portland State University, Clark College, Lincoln High School, Third Rail Rep, and various others. She received her BFA in scenic design from The Conservatory of Theatre Arts at Webster University.
Allison Normin Johnson
Allison Normin Johnson (she/her) is a designer and costumer who is delighted to be working in live theatre again. This is her first production with Corrib. She has worked in costume shops in Virginia, Arkansas, and locally at Portland Center Stage and Artists Repertory Theatre. Some of her favorite projects have been devised and emerging works with the CoHo Clown CoHort and Theatre 33, among others. Allison grew up in Beaverton and has returned to the area after earning her BA in Theatre Design from Willamette University. While earning her degree she spent considerable time studying art history in London, where her partner still lives.
Blanca Forzán is a lighting designer, set designer, and writer. Blanca has a degree in Architectures from Del Valle de Mexico University, was a Banff Center intern (Canada), and worked with the National Institute of Fine Arts for over two decades (Mexico City). She is also a set designer, producer, manager, playwright, tour manager, and international technical director. Notable shows include Faust (Brooklyn Academy of Music, N.Y) and Hamlet (Cadiz Spain). Other credits: Broken Promises, Contigo Pan y Cebolla, El Muerto Vagabundo and Astucias (Milagro), Bicycle Country (Aurora Theatre, Lawrenceville, G.A.), An Octoroon, A Doll’s House Part 2, and La Ruta (Artist Repertory Theatre), The Taming (Coho Theatre), In the Next Room (Portland State University), Men on Boats (Willamette University, Salem), Jump (Confrontation Theatre), Mother Courage and Ruined (Profile Theatre), The Measure of Innocence (Bag & Baggage, 2020), two participations in digital soliloquies as a writer with Bag & Baggage, one participation as an interpreter with the Mercury (digital) company (Artist Repertory Theatre), A Bright New Boise (Willamette University, 2021), A Christmas Carol (Portland Playhouse, 2021), In the Name of Forgotten Women ( Coho Theatre, 2022), Neat with Passinart at IFCC, 2022, and Bella: An American Tall Tale (Portland Playhouse, 2022). Happy to be with you for the first time.
Alan is a designer, programmer, and technician working in the Portland theatre community for the last ten years. His work has been seen at Artist’s Repertory Theatre, Profile Theatre, Third Rail Repertory, Oregon Children’s Theatre, BodyVox, Northwest Classical, and others. He is very pleased to be making his first appearance with Corrib.
Elizabeth Young (Sound Design) is happy to be working on another Corrib production, particularly with such a female-focused production and design team. She has been involved in theatre behind the scenes, with sound designs for Corrib Theatre, CoHo Theatre, Theatre Vertigo, and Post5, and choreography and direction for Anonymous Theatre, and is a proud company member of Anonymous Theatre. She has also appeared onstage with many theatre companies around town and beyond, including most recently in Don’t Hug Me at Broadway Rose Theatre Company. Much gratitude to Tracy and Gemma for the opportunity, and to Darius, Julian, and Mark for ignoring the strange noises emanating from the study.
Sophina Flores holds a BA in Theatre and Dance from Amherst College. She is the founder of local dance theatre company Roots & All Theatre Ensemble, centering marginalized identities and breaking the boundaries of realism, who you may know from productions such as Liminal and The Between Spaces. She has stage managed for shows such as Sweeney Todd, Urinetown, Big Love, Peer Gynt, and The Importance of Being Earnest. Most recently she stage managed Milagro’s Duende de Lorca. As a theatre maker, playwright, director, deviser, and choreographer, her work centers the intersectionality of identities as a bisexual Puerto Rican woman, and prominently features themes of mental illness and trauma, with surrealist or magical realist motifs.