News: "Occupy the Stage 22: The Remix!" Festival Streams February 17-27


The National Women's Theatre Festival's Occupy the Stage 22: The Remix is underway, and while this national festival is not taking place in NYC, seven out of its 22 playwrights are NYC-based, and all performances are available to stream. Occupy 22 plays center women, non-binary, gender non-conforming, trans, Black, Indigenous, POC, Global Majority, disabled, deaf, and neuro-diverse artists.

Occupy began in 2016 as a performance-as-protest to the lack of plays being produced by women playwrights across U.S. stages and has become an annual affirmation of the multitudes of brilliant, diverse work being written by women and underrepresented gender playwrights. Now in its 6th year, Occupy The Stage 22, based in Raleigh, NC, will be presented as a livestream festival of new plays mixed in with encore readings of fan favorites from previous years. Through this annual showcase and community celebration, Occupy advocates for intersectionality in our industry and increased visibility to both audiences and collaborators across the globe.

WHO: Occupy includes 22 playwrights, 22 directors, and over 80 actors, with at least 50% BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, and People of Color) and at least 50% women, nonbinary, and TGNC artists represented in each category. All shows have pay-what-you-can options and will be open-captioned for enhanced accessibility for the d/Deaf and hard of hearing. The playwrights range from NYU Tisch graduates to an Obie Lifetime Achievement Award-Winner, from a lifestyle blogger to a D&D enthusiast.

WHAT: 22 virtual livestreamed staged readings. These plays will take audiences from the halls of a supernatural high school to the crawlspace of a hip AirBnb, from the inception of landmark Supreme Court cases for sexual and reproductive rights to introspection from an animate Egg and Uterus.

WHEN: Feb 17-27, 2022.

WHERE: Occupy The Stage 2022 will air on NWTF’s YouTube channel Feb 17-27, 2022. Recordings will be available for up to 96 hours after their premiere.

HOW: Buy tickets on Eventbrite from $11-$22 for an individual performance day, $60 for single weekend passes, $100 for all-inclusive passes, with Pay-What-You-Can options.


Once you register for your ticket(s), you'll receive your viewing link for the entire day's worth of performances. Simply click your link to tune in to all the performances you want to see. All performances will air on NWTF’s YouTube channel.

Purchase tickets at


  • $11 Student Tickets (individual performance day)
  • $22 General Admission Tickets (individual performance day)
  • $60 All-Occupy Single Weekend Tickets (includes links to all 22 plays to view Feb 17-20 or Feb 24-27)
  • $100 All-Occupy VIP Tickets (includes links to watch all the Occupy shows for the entire festival Feb 17-27)


The festival embraces Pay What You Can pricing as a way to create equitable access to its programs for all and based on the belief that people pay what they can when they can. The National Women's Theatre Festival's investment in radical financial transparency comprises the tenets that it relies on sales revenue to pay for its programs, that it uses sales revenue to pay its people for their work, that its programs are valuable, and that individuals should not be excluded based on their economic constraints.


ACUTE EXPOSURE (written by Alice Hakvaag and directed by Hannah Levinson)

CITRUS (written by Celeste Jennings and directed by JaMeeka D. Holloway)

CRAIGSLISTED (written by Sharai Bohannon and directed by Abby Davis)

DARK MATTER (written by AnnMarie Morrison and directed by Sophia Menconi)

BEHEADING COLUMBUS (written by Diana Burbano and directed by Kaycee Swierc)

FOR LEONORA, OR, COMPANIONS (written by Hayley St. James, directed by Ana Radalescu)

FORECLOSURE (written by Jivani Rodriguez and directed by Serena Norr)

HAVE TO BELIEVE WE ARE MAGIC (written by Sara Guerrero and directed by Natasha Yannacañedo)

LITTLE EGG, BIG WORLD (written by Rachel Leighson and directed by Andrea Unger)

HIGH SCHOOL COVEN (written by Kaela Mei-Shing Garvin and directed by Heather Ondersma)

MIDNIGHT SHOWING (written by Libby Heily and directed by Keyanna Alexander)

GRISWOLD (written by Angela J. Davis and directed by Kiersten White)

CRAWLSPACEBLOG (written by Rebecca Kane and directed by Emily Grimany)

OUT OF BALANCE (written by Lindsay Carpenter and directed by Johannah Maynard Edwards)

LEGACY (written by Daysha Veronica and directed by Germona Sharp)

PEACE PLAZA (written by Christine Toy Johnson and directed by Leslie Barrera),

ORGANIC (written by Jenna Jane and directed by Shira Helena Gitlin)

REACHING FOR INFINITY (written by Peter Ruiz and directed by Mel Elkouz)

PRIMARY COLORS (written by Nina Ki and directed by Simone Tetrault)

THE RUNNING OF THE DEER (written by Jill Maynard and directed by Karen Loewy Movilla) WATERBEARERS (written by V. Efua Prince and directed by Robin Marshall)

THAT STORY AGAIN (written by Emma Joy Hill and directed by Ruthie Evelyn Allen)

WATCH: Video interviews with artists on “Theatre’s Not Dead”

The NYC-Based Playwrights

Lindsay Carpenter (Out of Balance): Lindsay Carpenter is based in New York City. She is a Princess Grace Award semi-finalist, Goldberg Prize finalist, and Bay Area Playwrights Festival semi-finalist. Her play Our Black Death: Plagues, Turnips, and Other Romantic Gestures will be produced in 2022 at The Unicorn Theatre. She graduated from NYU Tisch’s Dramatic Writing MFA Program in 2020 and is a co-founder of Ghost Ship Murder Mysteries (, which combines interactive theatre with role playing games. She was a staff writer on the CBC’s award winning web-series Amours d’occasion. In 2020, Lindsay workshopped Our Black Death at the Kennedy Center's MFA Workshop.

Celeste Jennings (Citrus): Celeste Jennings is a playwright and costume designer who is passionate about accurately representing BIPOC characters and our stories. Most recently she developed her play, Enough, with Northern Stage for their New Works Now Play Festival. Selected work includes Citrus (produced at Northern Stage) and Processing. Assistant design credits include Mlima’s Tale (Public Theatre) as well as Cardinal (2nd Stage Theatre). Recent design credits include Citrus (Northern Stage), It’s Fine I’m Fine (Northern Stage and United Solo Theatre Festival), Dutch Masters (Northern Stage), Esai’s Table (JAG), and Ties that Bind (Catholic University).

Rebecca Kane (Crawlspaceblog): Rebecca Kane is an Astoria, Queens-based playwright, stage manager, indie theatre producer, merch girl, and oat milk enthusiast. Her writing has appeared in the Rising Sun Performance Company 2019 Laboratorium Residency on Governor’s Island, the Naked Angels Tuesdays@9 readings, and the New York Theatre Festival, among others. In summer of 2019, her parody Almost Maimed performed simultaneously in LadyFest at The Tank and in the inaugural season of Rogue Theatre Festival. She’s had two new works appear in CyberTank 2020, The Tank’s virtual 2020 season, one of which, Tight (Haha Nice), was filmed and streamed this past summer in both Orlando Fringe’s DigiFringe and Rogue Theater Festival (Rebecca was a playwright-in-residence at Rogue as well). In 2021, she received a City Artist Corps Grant from the New York Foundation of the Arts for developing a new play. She is a 2020-21 ensemble member of the Rising Sun Performance Company.

Nina Ki (Primary Colors): Nina Ki is a Queerean (Queer + Korean) American playwright who graduated from NYU Tisch with a BFA in Dramatic Writing. Her plays have been read, recorded, and presented nationwide, including with MCC Theater, Queens Theatre, Brave New World Repertory, Yale Summer Cabaret, and The Parsnip Ship. Her play Moon Bear was given special consideration for the Relentless Award, and her play Ravage was a finalist for The Playwright's Realm's Writing Fellowship. To contact her or learn more about her work, please visit her website at

Rachel Leighson (Little Egg, Big World): Rachel Leighson (playwright) is an actor/singer/writer based in NYC. Previous writing credits include Blood on My Mother’s Apron (Off Broadway), The Forest Musical (Broadviews on Broadway), The Scarcity of Illness (The Skeleton Rep(resents)), and Why TYA? (Musical Theatre Today). She is a resident writer with Captivate Writers Collective. As an actor, Rachel has been seen in numerous Off Broadway shows at Playwrights Horizons, St. Luke’s Theatre, and the Actor’s Temple Theatre. She has also toured nationally with ArtsPower and Two Beans Productions.

Hayley St. James (For Leonora, or, Companions): Hayley St. James (they/them) is a Boston-born, mostly-New York-based playwright. A non-binary pansexual on the autism spectrum, they are deeply passionate about seeing themselves and their communities represented truthfully in all media, theatre first and foremost. In their theatrical work, they strive to marry authentic representation with hyper-theatrical, surreal, meta, and intimate twists. They also have a thing for imaginary friends, ghosts, aliens, rockstars, and well-handled pop culture references. Their plays include For Leonora, or, Companions, A Godawful Small Affair, and It's Confusing These Days.

Christine Toy Johnson (Peace Plaza): Christine Toy Johnson is an award-winning writer, actor, director, and advocate for inclusion. Her written works have been produced and/or developed by the Roundabout, Ars Nova, Village Theatre, Abingdon Theatre, Greater Boston Stage Company, National Women’s Theatre Festival, Barrow Group, Prospect Theatre, Weston Playhouse, The O’Neill, CAP 21 and more and are included in the Library of Congress’s Asian Pacific American Performing Arts Collection (Playwrights Division) and published by Applause Books. BMI Musical Theatre Writing Workshop alum, 2016 fellow of The Writers Lab (supported by Meryl Streep, Nicole Kidman and Oprah Winfrey), 2013 recipient of the Rosetta LeNoire Award from Actors’ Equity, 2020 Obie for advocacy with AAPAC. Treasurer of the Dramatists Guild. Host of the Guild’s podcast Talkback on Broadway Podcast Network. Currently playing “Diane” in the First National/North American tour of Come from Away. Details: Twitter/Insta: @CToyJ


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