Our Programs

Mission to (dit)Mars is thrilled to continue this season’s Launch Pad Reading Series with BRIGHT ANGEL QUADRANGLE, a new play by Mac Rogers (The Honeycomb Trilogy, Frankenstein Upstairs).

From the creative team that brought you the critically acclaimed THE HONEYCOMB TRILOGY (Gideon Productions) comes a brand new play about a contentedly married woman who finds her life turned upside-down one evening when she falls instantly in love with her friend’s new boyfriend, quickly turning into a horror story about love at first sight.

To attend the free reading, please make a reservation on our website: http://missiontoditmars.com/reservations/

The cast includes Rebecca Comtois, Tatiana Gomberg, Stephen Heskett, and Sean Williams.  The reading is directed by Jordana Williams.

CAST & CREATIVE TEAM

 

“Bright Angel is an endlessly fascinating look at extreme love at first sight. Mac’s work always borders on the magic, and this play takes the magic of our endless need for love to an extreme, hilarious and borderline compulsive edge” describes Laura Pestronk, Mission to (dit)Mars co-founder.

Co-founder Kari Bentley-Quinn adds “the play uses the classic tropes of the much loved living room play – with a twist. Mac’s strength is in his characters and their all too human ways of loving, hating, and communicating, and the result is a hilarious and often shocking examination of love and the inexplicable connections we forge with our fellow humans.”  

“The beauty in this play lies in the dichotomy Mac sets up for the audience.  You never feel unsafe in Mac’s hands, but you don’t feel at home either. It’s a great ride to go on” explains co-founder Meredith Packer

Mac Rogers is a current member of the Propulsion Lab, Mission to (dit)Mars’ bi-monthly writers group and currently resides in Astoria.

This free play reading will be held at Long Island City Music Academy on Monday, April 25th at 7pm.

To attend the free reading, please make a reservation on our website: http://missiontoditmars.com/reservations/

LIC Music Academy

44-02-23rd Street Suite # 203 (2rd fl)
Long Island City, New York

E, M, G or 7 to Court Sq.

N, Q to Queensboro Plaza
This reading is made possible (in part) by the Queens Council on the Arts with public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council.

QCA-Logo

About the Launch Pad Reading Series

The Launch Pad is a free reading series of new plays by Queens playwrights.  The mission objective of The Launch Pad is to serve as a testing ground for Queens based playwrights who need to hear their plays out loud.  Because Mission to (dit)Mars was co-founded by playwrights and directors, we understand implicitly how to answer those needs.  Through this program, the utmost care is taken to foster a safe and productive environment in order to propel the play forward.

Mission to (dit)Mars is thrilled to continue this season’s Launch Pad Reading Series with WHAT HAUNTS YOU, a new play by Elizabeth Seldin.

The stage is barren. The audience is gone. A single ghost light warming an empty theater and suddenly whispers of the past begin to mingle with the present. All theaters are haunted….everybody knows that. Especially Thomas…

The cast includes Tyler Gardella, Kristen Koed, Rebecca Spiro, Evan Montgomery, Chad Carstaphan, Adam La Faci, Melanie Beck, and Meghann Garmany.  The reading is directed by Mission to (dit)Mars co-founder Meredith Packer.

“One of Elizabeth’s strengths as a writer is world building, and What Haunts You is a perfect example of that. With deft characterization and a focus on atmosphere, Elizabeth transports the audience into the fascinating metaphysical world she has carefully crafted.” describes Kari Bentley-Quinn, Mission to (dit)Mars co-founder.

Meredith Packer adds “This play is such an immersive piece. It could be done in an amphitheatre on a warm day and the audience would still be transported to a dusty dark theater.”  

“The haunted doors to her theater make you want to come inside and face your fears.” adds co-founder Laura Pestronk

Elizabeth Seldin is a current member of the Propulsion Lab, Mission to (dit)Mars’ bi-monthly writers group and currently resides in Astoria.

This free play reading will be held at Long Island City Music Academy on Monday, February 15th at 7pm.

To attend the free reading, please make a reservation on our website: http://missiontoditmars.com/reservations/

LIC Music Academy

44-02-23rd Street Suite # 203 (2rd fl)
Long Island City, New York

E, M, G or 7 to Court Sq.

N, Q to Queensboro Plaza

This reading is made possible (in part) by the Queens Council on the Arts with public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council.

QCA-Logo

About the Launch Pad Reading Series

The Launch Pad is a free reading series of new plays by Queens playwrights.  The mission objective of The Launch Pad is to serve as a testing ground for Queens based playwrights who need to hear their plays out loud.  Because Mission to (dit)Mars was co-founded by playwrights and directors, we understand implicitly how to answer those needs.  Through this program, the utmost care is taken to foster a safe and productive environment in order to propel the play forward.

Mission to (dit)Mars is thrilled to kick off this season’s Launch Pad Reading Series with DUCK, a new play by Jonathan Alexandratos.

Teenage Duck Carl Duckett and his father are the only two Ducks living in a town populated entirely by Sheep.  This is what happens when Carl tries to survive that.  The cast includes David Shih, Mariana Newhard, Ava Eisenson, Jennifer Tsay, Scott Pestronk, and Colleen Wilson.  The reading is directed by Laura Pestronk.

Describing the play, Mission to (dit)Mars co-founder Kari Bentley-Quinn says “Jonathan has created a touching, funny, and often heartbreaking tale of childhood friendship, abuse, and resilience.”

Laura Pestronk (co-founder and director) adds “Jonathan creates delicate structures where our deepest fears and anxieties are shown in a gentle light. From the stage directions to the sparse design, we are all allowed to be a little vulnerable and open in the world of Duck.”

“Jonathan’s ability to create a world that feels young and fantastical while grappling with themes of the most intense and adult caliber is a gigantic feat.” adds co-founder Meredith Packer.  “It’s a strong piece that I am proud to present with Mission to Ditmars.”

Jonathan Alexandratos is a current member of the Propulsion Lab, Mission to (dit)Mars’ bi-monthly writers group and currently resides in Astoria.

This free play reading will be held at Long Island City Music Academy on Monday, November 2nd at 7pm.

To attend the free reading, please make a reservation on our website: http://missiontoditmars.com/reservations/

LIC Music Academy
44-02-23rd Street Suite # 203 (2rd fl)
Long Island City, New York
E, M, G or 7 to Court Sq.
N, Q to Queensboro Plaza

About the Launch Pad Reading Series

The Launch Pad is a free reading series of new plays by Queens playwrights.  The mission objective of The Launch Pad is to serve as a testing ground for Queens based playwrights who need to hear their plays out loud.  Because Mission to (dit)Mars was co-founded by playwrights and directors, we understand implicitly how to answer those needs.  Through this program, the utmost care is taken to foster a safe and productive environment in order to propel the play forward.

Co-founder Laura Pestronk peeking through one of the sculptures

Poetry in Stone
A Day of Writing at the Noguchi Museum

with Emily Herzlin and Mission to (dit)Mars
Sunday August 23rd
1-4:30pm

The Noguchi Museum
9-01 33rd Rd, New York, NY 11106

Thank you to everyone who attended!  If you missed it, here’s a great blog post by co-founder Laura Pestronk about her day at the Noguchi Mindful Writing workshop.

And here are some photos from our day:

Writers of all genres and experience levels welcome. Composers, dancers, performers, and visual artists are also welcome to attend.

The Noguchi Museum is one of our borough’s magical spaces. The space, designed by the late Japanese-American sculpture artist Isamu Noguchi, includes an open-air sculpture garden and several galleries, each with its own feel and family of Noguchi sculptures. The works of art and the spaces in the museum are mysterious, evocative, and playful. In short: this is an awesome place to spend a day creating.

The workshop will begin with a brief contemplative exercise to open up the senses, and will continue with a silent walking meditation around the galleries of the museum, followed by writing prompts and discussion to get the ideas flowing. Participants will then have time to explore the museum independently and create writing about or inspired by specific works of art. The workshop will conclude with a sharing circle where writers can share their work from the day aloud.

Please arrive at 12:50pm and meet us at the entrance. We will enter the museum as a group at 1pm. Bring something to write with and on. $20 total- $10 museum admission and $10 for the class.

Here are some photos from All Systems Go: Mission 3

Artwork for All Systems Go: Mission 3

All Systems Go: Mission 3 – Monday, June 22nd!!

Cast of All Systems Go: Mission 3
Cast of All Systems Go: Mission 3

Click here to view photos from our event!

Mission To (dit)Mars is pleased to present our final Launch Pad event of the season!

ALL SYSTEMS GO: MISSION 3, is an evening of excerpts from nine brand new plays by the Queens based writers group The Propulsion Lab.  Participating Queens based playwrights for this event are Amy Witting, Mac Rogers, Tori Keenan-Zelt, Jonathan Alexandratos, Mrinalini Kamath, Elizabeth Seldin, Lisa Huberman, Kristine M. Reyes, and Tyler Rivenbark.

 

In talking about this year’s lineup, Mission to (dit)Mars co-founder Meredith Packer says “I am proud that with our third All Systems Go!, Mission to Ditmars continues to bring the highest level of theater development to the Queens community.”

Co-founder Kari Bentley-Quinn adds “This is one of the strongest sets of plays we have seen in the Lab so far, with work that is fresh and, at times, truly groundbreaking.”

“We’re so excited to present all of the plays together in one night as our most diverse and bounteous All Systems Go! ever!” adds co-founder Laura Pestronk.

On the rise of new work in Queens, co-founder Don Nguyen explains “The breadth and scope of stories being told in the lab is truly remarkable.  Equally remarkable are the sheer number of writers, directors and actors who have all come together to work on these plays, which is a great indicator that Queens is becoming a hotbed for new work.”

The cast includes Hayley Treider, Dina Comolli, Jessica Cannizarro, Ava Eisenson, Elizabeth Seldin, Tara Pacheco, Gwen Sisco, Sara Thigpen, Wynne Anders, Aaron Kapner, David Shih, Tom McCormick, Anthony Fazio, and Sean Williams.

The evening is directed by Dev Bondarin, Jordana Williams, Aimee Todoroff, Christine Zagrobelny and Laura Pestronk.

The evening will include excerpts from the following nine new plays:

BRIGHT ANGEL QUADRANGLE by Mac Rogers: A horror story about love at first sight. A contentedly married woman finds her life turned upside-down one evening when she falls instantly in love with her friend’s new boyfriend.

WHAT HAUNTS YOU by Elizabeth Seldin: Theater ghosts in a theater. Having feelings. Feeling things.

THE SUCK by Tyler Rivenbark: Stephen Ajax is a Kid. Stephen Ajax is a Son. Stephen Ajax is a Boyfriend. Stephen Ajax is a New Father. Stephen Ajax is a Marine. Stephen Ajax is a Fragment.

DUCK by Jonathan Alexandratos: Teenage Duck Carl Duckett and his father are the only two Ducks living in a town populated entirely by Sheep.  This is what happens when Carl tries to survive that.

ELEVEN SHADES OF BLUE by Amy E. Witting: Four women from different times touch the sky, swim with the fish, and experience the details of a timeless Coney Island.

THE NEW DEAL by Mrinalini Kamath:  In the United States in the not-too-distant future, a violent act causes a state government to re-think capital punishment with a profit-bearing alternative.

EGGS ON ICE by Kristine M. Reyes: At Eggs On Ice, freezing your eggs has never been more convenient, affordable — or fabulous! Hit the snooze button on your biological clock while you focus on your career, and let us take care of the rest. Your future’s safe with us, ladies — we’ll make sure of that.

AIR SPACE by Tori Keenan-Zelt: When Mack and Babs lost their house, they moved secretly into the wall… from which they watch as Glory and Kyle try to flip it. A surreal comedy about inventing home, managing family, and what we hold onto when nothing we do is enough.

PERSEPHONE by Lisa Huberman: A contemporary take on the Persephone myth set on an organic farm in California, in which a teenage girl attempts to assert her own identity separate from her loving but controlling Earth goddess of a mother.

This free play reading will be held at the Astoria Performing Arts Center at 30-44 Crescent Street in Astoria, Queens on Monday, June 22nd at 7pm.

To attend the reading, please make a reservation on our website.

Monday, June 22nd 7 pm

Astoria Performing Arts Center
Good Shepherd United Methodist Church
30-44 Crescent St. (at 30th Rd)
Astoria, NY 11102

Directions: Take the N/Q to 30th Avenue. Walk down 30th Ave toward the Trade Fair Supermarket, continue past Mt. Sinai Hospital of Queens. Turn left on Crescent Street, then right on 30th Rd. The entrance is the second set of red doors on your left
Cast and directors to be announced shortly.

Please RSVP! This is usually our best attended event of the season and we would not want you to miss it.

There will be a reception to follow at a location to be determined. Please join us for a drink or two after the show!

We’re so excited to share this great work with all of you, and celebrate the end of our season.

Also – we are now on Instagram! Please follow us: @missiontoditmars. And don’t forget to follow us on Twitter and Facebook if you weren’t already.

About the Launch Pad Reading Series

The Launch Pad is a free reading series of new plays by Queens playwrights.  The mission objective of The Launch Pad is to serve as a testing ground for Queens based playwrights who need to hear their plays out loud.  Because Mission to (dit)Mars was co-founded by playwrights and directors, we understand implicitly how to answer those needs.  Through this program, the utmost care is taken to foster a safe and productive environment in order to propel the play forward.

hydra-poster3

Mission to (dit)Mars, a theatre arts collective serving Queens artists is thrilled to continue our popular Launch Pad Reading Series with The Hydra, a new play by Tyler Rivenbark.

An amalgamation of Greek and American folk tales, The Hydra finds Stephen Ajax – an Iraq war veteran – in a netherworld inhabited by Gods, Goddesses, and puppets. In this new and strange environment, Ajax is forced to face the aftermath of his former life.

Tyler Rivenbark
Tyler Rivenbark – taken at Martha’s Bakery in Astoria

Describing the play, Mission to (dit)Mars co-founder Kari Bentley-Quinn says “The Hydra is a play of great vision, boldness, and imagination. It is very exciting to see another full length play that was developed in the Propulsion Lab make it all the way to Launch Pad, and hopefully will have a bigger life beyond that.”

Meredith Packer (co-founder) adds “I am really excited to be putting this piece up on it’s feet. It is by far the most challenging play we have done for our reading series. Tyler paints a beautiful and terrifying world in The Hydra.”

“The Hydra is sheer poetry and color and emotion, it is at once the nakedness of life and a loud carnival of music and blinding light” adds co-founder Laura Pestronk. “Even Tyler’s stage directions buzz with tension and the poetry of loneliness.”

Tyler Rivenbark is a current member of the Propulsion Lab, Mission to (dit)Mars’ bi-monthly writers group and currently resides in Sunnyside.

The cast includes Temesgen Tocruray, David Shih, Sarah Burkhalter, Elizabeth Seldin, Ashley Awusie, Megan Lee, and Mark Drum. The reading is directed by Aimee Todoroff (All Systems Go: 2)

This free play reading will be held at The Secret Theatre located at 4402 23rd Street in Long Island City on Monday, March 30th at 8pm.

To attend the free reading, please make a reservation.

The Secret Theatre
4402 23rd St, Long Island City
E, M, G to Court Sq.
7 to Vernon Blvd/Jackson Ave or Court Sq.
N, Q to Queensboro Plaza

About the Launch Pad Reading Series
The Launch Pad is a free reading series of new plays by Queens playwrights. The mission objective of The Launch Pad is to serve as a testing ground for Queens based playwrights who need to hear their plays out loud. Because Mission to (dit)Mars was co-founded by playwrights and directors, we understand implicitly how to answer those needs. Through this program, the utmost care is taken to foster a safe and productive environment in order to propel the play forward.

Lily-FB-COVER

Mission to (dit)Mars, a theatre arts collective serving Queens artists is thrilled to continue our popular Launch Pad Reading Series with Lily in Love, a new play by Kristine M. Reyes.

In Lily in Love, Lily is a good Catholic Filipina daughter who’s always known exactly what to do with her life — until she falls in love with a woman. Lily’s life just got complicated.

Kristine M. Reyes
Playwright Kristine M. Reyes

Describing the play, Mission to (dit)Mars co-founder Kari Bentley-Quinn says “With Lily in Love, Kristine gives us an intelligent and empathic insight on sexuality and family. It is an engaging and modern work that will make the audience feel close to the story.”

Meredith Packer (co-founder) adds “Kristine’s ability to take harsh truths about family and acceptance and allow the audience to feel both the weight of sadness and the relief of laughter in the situations presented is a gift for all who see her work come to life.”

“There are times in everyone’s life when a romantic partner has to interact with the in-laws and Kristine creates immediately recognizable moments of both discomfort and familiarity” adds co-founder Laura Pestronk.  “We’re transported back to those uncomfortable moments we all know…when we regressed back to our own childhood interactions with our parents.”

Kristine Reyes was recently accepted into the Dramatists Guild Fellows Program and is a current member of the Propulsion Lab, Mission to (dit)Mars’ bi-monthly writers group. Kristine currently resides in Astoria.

The cast includes Mia Katigbak (Good Person of Szechwan), Christine Lee (Mary-Kate Olsen is in Love), Krystal Seli, Sarah Matteucci (Sex with Robots), and Johnny Lin.  The reading is directed by Colette Robert (EST, All Systems Go: 2)

This free play reading will be held at The Secret Theatre located at 4402 23rd Street in Long Island City on Monday, February 16th at 8pm.

To attend the free reading, please make a reservation on our website: http://missiontoditmars.com/reservations/

The Secret Theatre

4402 23rd St, Long Island City

E, M, G to Court Sq.

7 to Vernon Blvd/Jackson Ave or Court Sq.

N, Q to Queensboro Plaza

About the Launch Pad Reading Series

The Launch Pad is a free reading series of new plays by Queens playwrights.  The mission objective of The Launch Pad is to serve as a testing ground for Queens based playwrights who need to hear their plays out loud.  Because Mission to (dit)Mars was co-founded by playwrights and directors, we understand implicitly how to answer those needs.  Through this program, the utmost care is taken to foster a safe and productive environment in order to propel the play forward.

Mission to (dit)Mars is thrilled to kick off their Launch Pad Reading Series with Sex and Charitable Giving, a new play by Lisa Huberman.

Sex and Charitable Giving is set in a tiny Queens apartment where Natasha and Ankit embark on a BDSM journey together. When they decide to sponsor a little girl in Nepal to help out Natasha’s roommate Marcy, the couple find themselves confronting uncomfortable truths and pushing boundaries that go beyond sexual role play.

The cast includesRaja Burrows, Kristan Kelly Brown, Jen Ring, Aaliyah Habeeb and stage directions by Kate Lydic.  The reading will be directed by David Ledoux

This free play reading will be held at The Secret Theatre located at 4402 23rd Street in Long Island City on Monday, November 10th at 8pm.

To attend the free reading, please make a reservation on our website.

The Secret Theatre

4402 23rd St, Long Island City
E, M, G to Court Sq.
7 to Vernon Blvd/Jackson Ave or Court Sq.
N, Q to Queensboro Plaza

About the Launch Pad Reading Series

The Launch Pad is a free reading series of new plays by Queens playwrights.  The mission objective of The Launch Pad is to serve as a testing ground for Queens based playwrights who need to hear their plays out loud.  Because Mission to (dit)Mars was co-founded by playwrights and directors, we understand implicitly how to answer those needs.  Through this program, the utmost care is taken to foster a safe and productive environment in order to propel the play forward.

Mission to (dit)Mars, a theatre arts collective serving Queens artists, is thrilled to announce The 2014-2015 Launch Pad Reading Series.

This year’s lineup will include full length plays by Lisa Huberman, Kristine M. Reyes, and Tyler Rivenbark.  All three playwrights are members of The Propulsion Lab, a bi-weekly Queens based writers group that meets at the Secret Theatre in Long Island City.

The Propulsion Lab is a bi-weekly writers group that develops and nurtures new plays by Queens based playwrights.  The Launch Pad reading series is a natural progression in developing new work by giving selected playwrights a public reading of their full length play.

Misison to (dit)Mars co-founder Laura Pestronk discusses the common themes of each play “These plays all involve an absolutely major change in one or more characters’ former way of living or lifestyle.”

Don Nguyen, another co-founder, adds “What’s especially exciting is how vastly different each play is in tone and premise, and yet each manages to intersect this common theme in such an emotional and immediate way.”

Pestronk elaborates “Lily in Love deals with a woman who has never been in love with a woman before but now is committed to being with one for the rest of her life, The Hydra features Ajax, who finds himself completely changed and barely able to cope with life after serving in Iraq. Sex and Charitable Giving finds a couple pushing sexual boundaries way beyond anything they’ve done before. “

The three full length plays for the 2014-2015 Launch Pad Reading Series are:

Sex and Charitable Giving

By Lisa Huberman
November 10, 2014

In a tiny Queens apartment, Natasha and Ankit embark on a BDSM journey together. When they decide to sponsor a little girl in Nepal to help out Natasha’s roommate Marcy, the couple find themselves confronting uncomfortable truths and pushing boundaries that go beyond sexual role play.

 

Lily in Love

By Kristine M. Reyes
February 16, 2015

Lily is a good Catholic Filipina daughter who’s always known exactly what to do with her life — until she falls in love with a woman. Lily’s life just got complicated.

 

The Hydra

By Tyler Rivenbark
March 30, 2015

Through an amalgamation of Greek and American folk tales, The Hydra finds Iraq War Veteran, Stephen Ajax, in a netherworld inhabited by Gods, Goddesses, and puppets forced to face the aftermath of his former life.

This free play reading series will be held at The Secret Theatre located at 4402 23rd Street in Long Island City.  For more information, please visit missiontoditmars.com