Winning plays announced in WordWave playwright contest

Submitted to the Tribune

SOUTH LAKE TAHOE, Calif. — Lake Tahoe’s WordWave, a one-act play competition, celebrating upcoming playwrights returns to Valhalla Tahoe Sept. 11 with a new set of winning plays.

Produced as a staged reading, audiences will meet a psychologist on the brink of retirement who suddenly finds himself with two new clients – but one of them is a ghost in Oded Gross’s play “Ghost Writer”; explore the nature of childhood friendships that stay with us throughout life in “The Letter,” by Bill Blush; and consider what makes a life worth living in Tony Pasqualini’s “Benign Departures.”

“Once again we were impressed by our many submissions,” said Ginger Nicolay-Davis, WordWave co-founder. “In the seven years we have been running this contest it just keeps astounding us with the level of talent that is out there creating these interesting, funny, and thought provoking new theatre pieces.”

All three winning playwrights receive a $500 cash prize and a 2-night stay to see their work directed and produced as a staged reading at the historic Valhalla Boathouse Theatre. Performances are followed by an interactive question and answer session with the playwrights.

Oded Gross author of the winning play “Ghost Writer,” is a playwright and composer. As a playwright, he has had over 100 productions of his works throughout the United States and abroad, most notably at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Idaho Shakespeare Festival, and the Theatre at Boston Court. His adaptations, as well as his original productions, have garnered numerous Critics’ Picks and nominations including Best Adaptation by LA Weekly, Backstage West and LA Stage Times for The Government Inspector and LA Weekly’s Critics “Pick Of The Week” for his one-act The Comedy of Romeo and Juliet.

Bill Blush, author of “The Letter,” said he decided to go all in on playwrighting in March of 2020, after a decade of sitting at an office desk, hopelessly staring blankly at a screen, and writing emails for 8 hours a day, he said he wondered what was next. So, he bought his own desk and now sits at home, staring happily at a blank screen, writing plays for 8 hours a day. 

Tony Pasqualini, a veteran of 45 years in the theatre, is a playwright, actor and director. Pasqualini has written ten full-length plays, along with several one acts. His play, Loyalties, was a winner of the Ashland New Play Festival, and was subsequently produced in an acclaimed production, which ran for over four months at the Pacific Resident Theatre in Los Angeles.

Tickets are on sale now at The performance is at 7:30 p.m. Sept. 11, at the Valhalla Boathouse Theatre.  

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