Literary Series

Emerging Artists. Exciting new works

Next Future Classics Reading:

La Negra by Raquel Almazan


About The Series

At the core of the Classical Theatre of Harlem’s Literary Series is the belief that theater has the transformative power to challenge the status quo, connect disparate worlds of thought, and, ultimately, change the world. Thus, we are invested in the development of work that shifts the conversation around representation in the theater and are dedicated to providing a platform for those voices traditionally underrepresented on the American Stage.

CTH’s Literary Series is supported, in part, by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council, the Jarvis & Constance Doctorow Family Foundation and the Axe-Houghton Foundation.

Selected playwrights submit 10-12 pages of a new work in the early stages of development. Actors are cast on the spot and perform a cold reading, followed by a moderated audience feedback session. In addition to serving the development of new work, these readings give audiences a sneak peek into how new plays are created.

CTH asserts that a “Future Classic” promotes courageous and open-minded examination of controversial and critical topics that are at the heart of society. Designed for the emerging professional playwright, Future Classics offers participating writers the opportunity to showcase their new completed works and receive dramaturgical feedback.  Participants work with CTH’s resident dramaturge, a professional director and a dedicated group of actors to showcase a new full-length play.

Submit your work to Ms. Shawn René Graham, Literary Director at No phone calls please.

  • Plays/Excerpts may not have been previously produced.
  • Playwrights may submit up only to fifteen (15) pages only for Playwrights’ Playground, or up to one full play for Future Classics.
  • Plays must be submitted as a PDF or as a Word document.
  • Playwrights will not receive comments on plays once submitted.
  • Playwrights should also include a brief author’s bio and/or resume.
  • Playwrights may also submit a play synopsis (250 words).

No phone calls please.

  • Actors can volunteer to be cast in a Playwrights’ Playground reading by arriving thirty minutes early and signing up with our reading coordinator.
  • Future Classics readings are cast in advanced.


Future Classics

Feb 25th, 2019,7:00 PM

La Negra
by Raquel Almazan



Samuels Teaching Studio,
Samuel B. & David Rose Building,
70 Lincoln Center Plaza, 7th floor,
Rose Building


Kevin Renn

Born and raised in the Midwest, Kevin Renn is a graduate of Indiana University now living in New York. Some of his work, Jungle Juice and Cleo, Jack, and Cagnacci, has been produced and developed with Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park and the At First Sight Festival at IU.

Shelley Fort

Shelley Fort’s select writing + acting credits include.miss america, Auburn Avenue Spring/Summer 2018 Issue; Runaway, National Black Theater (Reading Series); The Bright Edges of the World, Quick Silver; Poppy, TFTT; Camae, The Mountaintop; Mayme, Intimate Apparel; Cressida, Troilus and Cressida; Kenyon College (BA) and Brown/Trinity (MFA)

Gethsemane Herron-Coward

Gethsemane Herron-Coward’s plays include HEIFER, BLANKS and LORDES (w/Katherine Wilkinson). Gethsemane’s work has been seen with the The Fire This Time Festival, JAG Productions, and more. Fellowships include: Puffin Foundation, Yasmin Scholarship from the Millay Colony. Member: Dramatist’s Guild.  Gethsemane will earn an MFA in Playwriting from Columbia University.

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