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Lyric Stage Commissions Garden State for Play at Home

Recently, we commissioned a short play entitled Garden State by Sam Hamashima for Play at HomeGarden State follows a bee named Polly as she embarks on an adventure to come home before nightfall after being trapped in a glass jar. As she struggles navigating around the forest, she gains the help of two fireflies and realizes how she must listen to other perspectives when journeying home.

Playwright Sam Hamashima appeared in our production of Pacific Overtures, and blends his queer and Japanese-American identity to create works that explores different perspectives. Sam’s work has been produced and/or developed by John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, National Queer Theater, the Hub Theater, the Seattle Public Theater, and numerous others. Hamashima also holds a BFA in Musical Theatre from the University of Michigan.

Play at Home is an initiative that stemmed from the ongoing pandemic, in which multiple theatre companies came together to create this series of plays commissioned specifically for this moment of unexpected isolation to inspire joy and connection for theatre-lovers.

The process is simple; partner theaters commission playwrights to write short plays that can be performed at home. Scripts are then posted and available for free online to download. People can then read the plays in the comfort of their own homes, and can interpret the plays however they want; these plays are meant to go beyond what might be possible on stage at a theater. Then people can share their performances on social media by tagging #PlayAtHomePlays! Our staff performed a reading of Garden State over Zoom in a recent staff meeting and had a delightful time. Now it’s your turn! 

Play at Home’s goal is to support freelance artists, and promote their creative works for the world to see. They are currently seeking more partner theaters and individuals to jump into the fun.