The Open Door Reading Series 2017

As part of Dear Stone Theater’s mission to create career opportunities for emerging theater artists, we are proud to launch The Open Door Reading Series 2017. The public readings serve a twofold purpose for emerging playwrights: allowing them to see how an audience’s responds to the play, and allowing their work to be seen by theater producers and directors who might be interested staging a full production.

As such, we are excited to announce the plays selected for this year’s reading series:


By Jillian Leff

(Non)Fiction tells the story of Stephanie, an aspiring novelist who gets her big break with a novel inspired by her boyfriend Mike’s traumatic past in a religious cult. When Mike finally reads the manuscript the day before her press tour, Stephanie is faced with the reality of how her artistic choices might affect the lives of those closest to her and the possible conflict between her personal and career decisions.

Jillian Leff is a Chicago based playwright and actor. Originally from Cleveland, OH, she has a BFA in Acting from Ball State University (chirp chirp). Her writing has been seen around the city in Chicago Danztheatre’s Full Circle Festival (Fly on the Wall) and Nothing Special Productions’s Fight Night X (The Mother-Load). She is a Company Member/Marketing Director of The Cuckoo’s Theater Project and has gotten to work with some awesome companies such as Runaways Lab Theatre, EDGE Theatre, and Corn Productions. She is currently involved in The Writer’s Room with The New Colony and in May you can catch her short play, Forgetting, as part of Ghostlight Ensemble’s Six Authors in Search of a Character Festival.

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The Calorie Counters
By Molly Wagner

Maggie and Jordan are two sisters who have grown up thick as thieves…for the most part. When Jordan loses weight and becomes engaged to the man of her dreams, she only wants Maggie to find the same happiness. Jordan presents Maggie with an ultimatum: the size of her bridesmaid dress. Not wanting to miss out on her sister’s big day, Maggie joins a weight loss program called The Calorie Counters in order to fit into her sister’s wedding. The Calorie Counters force Maggie to take a look at what has kept her weight on all of these years, and who might she become when it is taken off.

Molly Wagner is a Chicago playwright and actor from St. Charles, IL. She received her BFA in Acting from Ball State University where she wrote and developed pieces with Busted Space Theatre Company and the Virginia Ball Center for Creative Inquiry. She was a ten-minute play national finalist at the American College Theatre Festival and her immersive adaptation of A Christmas Carol premiered in Chicago this past December with Ignite Theatre at Catalyst Ranch.

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