Charlene A Donaghy-Third Place 2010

About Charlene

Charlene A. Donaghy: Kennedy Center Award winning playwright. Plays produced in New York City and around the country. Publication in The Best American Short Plays 2010-2011. John Cauble 2011 Short Play Award National Finalist. Actors Theatre of Louisville 2010 Heideman Award Finalist. Advanced Track Guest Artist Kennedy Center Playwriting Intensive. Writings honored: Writer's Workshop Asheville, Louisiana Literary Journal, and featured in publications including In the Eye: A Collection of Writings. Director of Production for Tennessee Williams Theater Festival. Writing Arts Program Developer and Instructor Connecticut Warner Theatre Center for Arts Education. Educator at University of Nebraska Omaha and Lesley University Cambridge where she earned an MFA in Writing for Stage and Screen.


As a playwright I leave every fiber of myself on the page; loneliness, poetry, life's uncertainties, human tragedy and comedy, love, lust, pain, hope, home, uncommon couplings and un-couplings, and much more. I am a writer of New Orleans 'The city that dreams stories.' as Andrei Codrescu states. I write the soulful voices and tell the stories of my beloved muse city in ways that allow my audiences to see bits of themselves in my characters, even those parts that they might not confess to anyone. I embrace the philosophy that the final acts of my plays come after the lights fade, in the conversations over drinks or coffee or dinner or sex. My writings most often cast light on characters caught between two worlds, teetering perhaps between right and wrong, love and lust, heaven and whatever perception of hell might be occurring. After all, aren't we always making those choices on some levels?

Judge's comments

In 'Gift of an Orange' Charlene Donaghy writes a beautiful ode to the magic of voodoo. A simple set(including an orange tree) is the backdrop for a story which slowly weaves its spell around us as it does the characters. The witchy woman who holds court here banishes the cares of the world from her young male tresspasser. Her longing becomes the young man's longing. Like a spider with its magical web catching many kinds of flies, the woman with the knowledge of these magic arts catches many a wayward man. Spellbinding.