Kia Corthron of New York City will be the honored playwright at this spring’s Great Plains Theatre Conference.
The conference is slated for May 24 through 31 on the Fort Omaha campus of Metropolitan Community College.
Corthron has described herself as a political writer, grounding each of her plays in a socio-political issue. Examples include police brutality (“Force Continuum”), dumping of industrial chemicals (“Safe Box”), veterans’ issues (“Glimpse of the Ephemeral Dot”), the death penalty (“Life by Asphyxiation”), land mines, female gangs, youth violence and disabilities.
She grew up in Cumberland, Md., where her father worked in a paper mill. She now calls Harlem home.
After earning a master of fine arts degree from Columbia University, Corthron was commissioned by Chicago’s Goodman Theater to write “Seeking the Genesis,” a play about parents using Ritalin to prevent urban youth from turning to violence.
She has since been commissioned to write plays for the Royal Court Theatre, Alabama Shakespeare Festival, the Atlantic Theatre Company, the Manhattan Theatre Club, the Mark Taper Forum and the Public Theater.
The Guthrie Theater in Minneapolis commissioned her to work on “Tap the Leopard,” a play about the historical relationship between the United States and Liberia.
Corthron has also written television episodes for “The Wire” and “The Jury.”