Alix Sobler Wins Alliance/Kendeda National Graduate Playwriting Competition
May 3, 2017
Playwright Alix Sobler ’17 is the winner of theAlliance/Kendeda National Graduate Playwriting Competition forher play Sheltered. As the competition winner, Sobler’s play will receive a production as part of the Tony Award-winning Alliance Theatre’s new season, directed by Kimberly Senior, who directed of the original Broadway production of Disgraced. Along with this year’s finalists, Sobler’s play will also receive additional development opportunities, including staged readings with industry professionals in Washington, D.C. and Atlanta.
Sheltered is inspired by the true story of a couple who arranged for 50 European children to be given up by their parents and taken to safety in the United States during World War II. However, after arriving in Europe, they must be sure that separating children from their loving homes is actually their best option.
“When I began writing Sheltered in late 2014, the Syrian refugee crisis was a smaller news item that many Americans didn’t even know about. As a playwright, I had researched and written about Anne Frank and World War II refugees, and the stories and photos that were landing in the news caused the hair on the back of my neck to stand up. I had seen this before,” said Sobler in a press release. “I began writing Sheltered as an exploration into what a person on the other side of the ocean can do in response to such crises, and what does it mean to take action when many people around you don't seem to find it important.
The The Alliance/Kendeda National Graduate Playwriting Competition evaluates scripts from leading MFA programs before narrowing the pool down to one winner and four finalists. Past winners have become some of today’s most exciting writers and playwrights and include Academy Award winner Tarell Alvin McCraney, Kenneth Lin, who is currently a writer for the Netflix hit original series House of Cards, and Susan Smith Blackburn Prize finalist Meg Miroshnik.
Sobler is a writer from New York whose plays have been read, workshopped, and produced in North America and England. In 2016, she had three plays produced, including her play The Secret Annex at the Segal Centre in Montreal;JONNO, at the Winnipeg Fringe Theatre Festival; and The Great Divide, at the Finborough Theatre in London.