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The Contemporary American Theater Festival produces the newest plays in America, in the oldest town in West Virginia. Discover the ultimate theater experience in historic Shepherdstown.

Named as one of the top theater festivals in the world, by publications such as The New York Times, CQ Low Stool Simple Modern shoes Bench Fashion Sofa Stool Living Room Coffee Table Stool Square Stool Small Bench (color White), and World Guide, the Contemporary American Theater Festival shapes the future of American theater. Each summer, the Festival produces six new plays in rotating repertory.

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Herendeen

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Apr. 26, 2019   • BWW News Desk

On April 20th Ed Herendeen, the Founder and Producing Director of the Contemporary American Theater Festival (CATF), was inducted into the College of Fellows of the American Theatre at the John F. Kennedy Center Awards. This membership is a result of Herendeen’s lifetime contributions to American theater and adhering to the Festival’s mission of “producing and developing new American theater.” Formed in 1965, the College of Fellows touts their membership is “an honorary society of outstanding theatre educators and professional theatre practitioners.” Herendeen is one of only seven theater artists to be inducted this year.

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PLAYS BY WOMEN FROM THE CONTEMPORARY AMERICAN THEATER FESTIVAL

NYC Release Party

Join Ed Herendeen and Peggy McKowen as they celebrate the release of Plays by Women of the Contemporary American Theater Festival, CATF’s first anthology of plays as published by London-based Methuen Drama.

Playwrights Johnna Adams, D.W. Gregory, Chisa Hutchinson, and Susan Miller will also be at the party to sign copies of the anthology and speak with guests.

Monday, April 8 from 7-9pm
New Dramatists
424 West 44th Street, New York, NY 10036

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CATF Anthology

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Feb 17, 2019 • The Journal

A new anthology featuring five plays by women has emerged from some deep local soil.

The work is called “Plays by Women from the Contemporary American Theater Festival,” featuring plays that have been produced by the Shepherd University-based CATF. Peggy McKowen, one of the volume’s editors, said the plays were nourished by a deeply creative environment – including an audience that’s grown to demand strong and innovative work. Flash Furniture 4 Pack Hercules Series Double Braced Beige Metal Folding Chair

Behind the Play: a Tragedy, a Gift, a Wish to Forgive

Feb 6, 2019 • The New York Times

“Everything is Wonderful” takes place in the aftermath of another car accident, one that kills two children in an Amish family. The father’s impulsive decision to invite the grief-stricken driver into their home dredges up a series of confrontations that test the community’s ability to forgive any and all acts if they are properly repented.

Ms. Marcantel said she came up with the idea for the play, which had its premiere in 2017 at the Contemporary American Theater Festival in Shepherdstown, W.Va., after seeing a Werner Herzog documentary about a fatal car accident involving an Amish buggy. MORE»

The Cake

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July 11, 2018 • The Washington Post

The plays at this year’s Contemporary American Theater Festival speak fervently about the power of memory. Whether it’s because of Proustian cookie consumption or because divisive times and extreme weather inspire soul-searching about the past, the six works currently on view at this town’s nationally known new-play showcase comment on memory’s ability to dominate and disrupt the present. MORE»

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July 9, 2018 • DC Theatre Scene

I do not know with what weapons World War III will be fought, Albert Einstein once said, but World War IV will be fought with sticks and rocks.

It is after the war now. The great cities are gone, and the networks which kept us alive and healthy are in disarray. Once we dreamed of luxury vacations and hot cars and McMansions and bling, but now we dream of some little hunk of meat to go with our root vegetables. And water. Most of all, we dream of water… MORE»

Berta, Berta

Review: ‘Berta, Berta’ at the Contemporary American Theater Festival

July 12, 2018 • DC Metro Theatre Arts

“The past is never dead. It’s not even past.”

–William Faulkner, Requiem for a Nun.

Of the many great moments in the late August Wilson’s Twentieth Century cycle, the most powerful one for me comes in The Piano Lesson, Wilson’s evocation of the Hill District in Depression-era Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. A circle of men, all from the same county in Mississippi, are hanging out together when the conversation turns to Parchman Farm, the Mississippi State Penitentiary, a prison for men, mostly black, where hard labor was the rule… Sofa, Foldable Single Mini Chair, Simple Lazy Sofa (color Coffee)

Courtney_Sale_by_Seth_Freeman_courtesy_CATF
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W.Va. theater festival presents uncannily timed lesbian wedding cake play

July 6, 2018 • Washington Blade

A play about a Christian baker’s dilemma to make a wedding cake for a same-sex couple probably sounds more tragic than funny. But Bekah Brunstetter, writer and producer of NBC’s hit dramady “This Is Us,” has written a comedy on just this topic. MORE»