Theater for the New City's 20th annual Love 'N Courage gala Monday, Feb. 13 will benefit its Emerging Playwrights program.
Gala evening with performances at The Players will honor playwright Eduardo Machado and City Council member Carlina Rivera.

February 13, 2023
The Players, 16 Gramercy Park South
Cocktails 6:00 PM, seated dinner 7:00 PM. Performances begin 8:00 PM.
Tickets are $200 (individuals) and $1750 for a table of ten
Buy tix:, (212) 254-1109.
RSVP by Feb. 7

NEW YORK, January 6 -- Theater for the New City's Emerging Playwrights Program will be beneficiary of the theater's 20th annual Love 'n Courage benefit Monday, February 13, 2022 at The Players, 16 Gramercy Park South. The evening honors Eduardo Machado, playwright, and Carlina Rivera, representative of the the 2nd City Council District .

Theater for the New City (TNC) is a four-theater complex at 155 First Avenue. Its awards include the Pulitzer Prize, 43 Village Voice OBIE Awards, nine Audelco Awards, two Bessie Awards, five ASCAP Awards, ten Rockefeller Playwrights Fellowships, The Mayor's Stop the Violence Award, the Manhattan Borough President’s Award for Public Service and Artistic Excellence in Theater, and a NY City Council Proclamation that pays tribute to TNC’s contributions to improving the quality of life in the City by its “rich tradition of bringing theater to people in multi-cultural neighborhoods.”

The Emerging Playwrights program is integral to the theater's mission, which includes being a center for new and innovative theater arts, discovering relevant new writing and nurturing new playwrights. TNC does not believe that readings are enough help an artist to grow into the American playwriting mainstream. So the theater gives emerging artists full productions, with a minimum run of three weeks, with full lighting, sets, costumes and overall good production values. The theater staff does marketing and ticket prices are kept low to ensure good attendances.

Each year there are between 20 and 30 emerging playwrights presented. No other theater approaches the volume of work by emerging playwrights that TNC has presented in the 52 years since its founding.

Playwrights are selected for the quality of their work and their historical and social vision. Executive Director Crystal Field declares, "That is our ballast. Everything else is just decoration." Many colleges have playwriting programs, but the process at TNC is different from what happens in university theaters because at TNC, the playwright is involved in all aspects of the production and has final say on everything including budget, casting, designers and choice of director. Once the play is selected, the producer cannot fire the writer and there is no censorship in any way. It's a nurturing relationship in which the author is also invited to create a new work for the following season.

Emerging playwright productions get to use the theater's set and costume shops and its vast inventory of set pieces. Each theater space is fully equipped and since Covid began, TNC has added streaming capabilities.

"Love 'n Courage" will be hosted by songwriter/playwright/performer Phoebe Legere and co-hosted by playwright Matt Morillo. Entertainment will include performances by Phoebe Legere, David Amram, Ashley Liang Dance Company, Ronald "Smokey" Stevens, Yip Harburg Rainbow Troupe, Danielle Aziza, excerpts from TNC productions "Hamlet in Harlem" by Alberto Ferreras, "The White Blacks" by Melanie Maria Goodreaux, "Not About Me" by Eduardo Machado and a song from "Who Murdered Love" by Lissa Moira and Richard West. Entertainment in the cocktail hour will include lobby dance by Human Kinetics, songs by Michael Vazquez and atmospheric music by The Head Peddlers.

Eduardo Machado (honoree) was born in Cuba and came to the USA when he was nine. He is author of over forty plays, including "The Cook," "Havana is Waiting," "The Modern Ladies Of Guanabacoa," "Fabiola," "Broken Eggs" and "Stevie Wants to Play the Blues." His plays have been produced by TNC, Seattle Repertory, the Goodman, Hartford Stage, Actors Theatre of Louisville, Mark Taper Forum, Long Wharf, Hampstead Theatre in London, The Cherry Lane Theatre, Repertorio Español and many others. His TV writing credits include Starz’s "Magic City" and HBO’s "Hung." He is a Professor of Playwriting at NYU/Tisch and was Artistic Director of INTAR from 2004 to 2010. He acted at TNC in productions of his own plays "Don Juan in NYC" (1988) and "Mariquitas" (2013).  He has directed numerous plays, including his own works and those of emerging writers. He is co-author of “Tastes Like Cuba: An Exile’s Hunger for Home” (Gotham Press, 2007). His plays are published by Samuel French and TCG.

Carlina Rivera (honoree) was born and raised in the 2nd District of Lower Manhattan by a single mother who moved to New York City from Puerto Rico. Throughout her tenure in the City Council, she has been a stalwart supporter of the arts. She has also introduced and passed legislation related to sexual harassment, reproductive health, immigration, criminal justice reform, affordable housing, small business survival, and transportation. While Chair of the Committee on Hospitals during the COVID crisis, she worked collaboratively with healthcare providers and organizers to ensure that testing and tracing outreach was being run by credible organizations, pushed for vaccine equity, and delivered PPE and food to neighbors most in need. After Sandy, she helped coordinate thousands of volunteers to assist over 10,000 homebound residents as part of a recovery network that would go on to support families affected by the Second Avenue and Flatiron Explosions.

The benefit committee includes Mary Tierney (Chair), F. Murray Abraham, David Amram, Alexander Bartenieff, Vinie Burrows, Charles Busch, Janet Piontek, Myrna Duarte, Carol Dudgeon, Crystal Field, Matthew Fitzgerald, Andrea Fulton, Assembly Member Deborah Glick, Robert Gonzales, Jr., Robert Greer, Philip Hackett, Alan Hanna, Deena & Ernie Harburg, Celia Kornfeld, Anne Lucas, Eduardo Machado, Nancy and Allan Manocherian, Mark Marcante, Audrey Heffernan Meyer, Louis Mofsie, Lissa Moira, Stephan Morrow, Richard Ploetz, Tim Robbins, Liana Rosario, Michael Scott-Price, Jonathan Slaff, David F. Slone, Esq., Founder Betsy von Furstenberg (in memoriam), Jenne Vath, Joel Vig, Jonathan Weber, Patricia & Dr. Jay Weiner and Frank Zuback.

Cocktails are at 6:00 PM with a seated dinner at 7:00 PM. Performances begin at 8:00 PM. Tickets are $200 (individuals) and $1750 for a table of ten, available online at For info call (212) 254-1109. RSVP by February 7. Dress is festive.

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