Podcast Ep. 15: Playwright Jason Odell Williams on God, Guns, and ‘Church and State’

Podcast Ep. 15: Playwright Jason Odell Williams on God, Guns, and ‘Church and State’

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This Tuesday marks the 12th anniversary of the shooting at Virginia Tech. As a news junkie, I remember being riveted to the television watching the news events unfold, never imagining that years later, I would become a proud Hokie mom. Interestingly, enough, around the same time my son moved in and began his freshman year at Virginia Tech, Jason Odell Williams’ play Church and State opened at New World Stages in New York City. It’s about a Senator on the verge of re-election who decides to speak his mind after a shooting at his children’s school in Raleigh. Williams says this play began as a germ of an idea shortly after the shooting massacre at Virginia Tech in 2007. Church and State opens at the North Raleigh Arts and Creative Theatre (NRACT) on April 26th. For more information or tickets visit: North Raleigh Arts Creative Theatre

About the Guest

Jason Odell Williams is an award-winning playwright and Emmy-nominated television producer. His plays have been performed Off-Broadway at New World Stages and The Westside Theatre as well as in theatres across the country. His play Church & State was a 2016 NNPN Rolling World Premiere, nominated for a BEST NEW PLAY AWARD by the Off-Broadway Alliance, three L.A. Ovation Awards including Best Playwriting for an Original Play, and named one of Huffington Post’s TOP TEN Theatre Productions of 2016. Church & State was recently optioned by Gigi Films (The Art of Getting By, The Winning Season). Jason was hired to adapt it into a screenplay with his wife and collaborator Charlotte Cohn. Jason’s first play Handle With Care was a New York Times Critics’ Pick when it ran Off-Broadway starring Carol Lawrence. Other plays include Someone Else (World Premiere, NC Stage); Baltimore in Black & White (the cell theatre) and The Science of Guilt (the Daryl Roth 2). His newest play The Whole Shebang was recently named a Semi-Finalist for the 2019 National Playwrights Conference at the Eugene O’Neill Theater Center. The play was also named a Finalist for the 2018 InterAct Theatre Company’s New Play Development Award and was one of three plays selected for a workshop reading in Florida Studio Theatre’s 2018 New Play Reading Series. In his other life, Jason works as a writer and producer on such TV shows as “Brain Games” on Nat Geo,  “60 Days In” on A&E, “Homicide Hunter” on Discovery ID (seasons 2 and 9), and the new hit Netflix Original Series “Brainchild. Jason lives in Manhattan with his wife, their daughter (a budding actress-singer-graphic novelist), and their rescued dog who loves chasing squirrels. For more information visit:
http://www.jasonodellwilliams.com/ .


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