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  • Writer's pictureshelbyrseeley

Words of Praise from Playwright Sarah Elisabeth Brown

"I am long overdue to give an exuberant shout out of gratitude for this woman, Shelby Seeley. She came into my life last August when I went to BoxFest Detroit to see her directorial work on a short version of my play, Pizza Slut. It's such a treat, as a playwright, to show up to a production of your play done by artists you don't know and watch them knock it out of the park. Since then, Shelby has joined me in coordinating a reading of new short plays from the NOVA Lab, a playwrighting group I'm running in Ann Arbor. As a student in the Eastern Michigan University Theater Department, she organized student directors for the plays, coordinated auditions and logistics and made the readings happen. Drama without the drama, that's her. She makes things happen competently, and without a fuss.

Over the course of the quarantine, she has been working with me via Zoom on workshopping a revised version of my 1996 play, "Bermuda Triangles: The Non-Monogamy Experiment" and it has absolutely turned this time into something productive, fun, and connected. Also, the actresses who've participated have just made this such a joy. Their willingness to jump in and try new things and spend their time on this project with me has been tremendous. Shelby and her friends are remarkable up and coming theater people. It may take awhile, but theater will come back, and these women will be taking it by storm.

Also, Shelby graduated this spring from EMU. She didn't get to do it in person, or have big parties and the like. She had to give up some projects she'd lined up in the fall due to virus precautions and all that. None of that has stopped her from finding online opportunities, from making the most of our work together, and staying creatively connected with her crew.

All this makes me want to congratulate her even more for who she is in the world. Shelby, thank you for your smart partnership. It's not even been a year, but look at how much we've done! I am excited for you and your friends to be unleashed upon the world!"

  • Sarah Elisabeth Brown, playwright, May 18, 2020

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