Dedicated to new, exciting, and innovative theatrical works of the highest quality, we provide a space where writers, performers, and an audience can come together in a spirit of community and collaboration to expand our understanding of what is possible in the theatre. We also offer educational programs and support for artist development for Southwestern Virginia. By working in concert with other arts organizations, we will strive to make Roanoke a nationally recognized ignition point for new play development.
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30 Campbell Avenue, SW

Roanoke VA 24011
Our Lunchbox program featured short plays presented in a relaxed, brown-bag setting.  It was the predecessor to our current Workshop Reading Series.

Past Lunchbox Readings

December 8, 2010:  Knock

Written by Anne Phelan
Directed by Don LaPlant


November 10, 2010:  Damn Liberals!

Two short plays written and directed by Don LaPlant


October 13, 2010 Bloody, Bloody
Two short plays by Laura Crockarell

Directed by Will Coleman

September 8, 2010:  Out of Time
"Tinderbox" by Don LaPlant

"Ten Mins." by Will Coleman

Directed by Don LaPlant

August 11, 2010:  The Biology of Romance
Written by D.T. Arcieri

Directed by Don LaPlant

July 14, 2010:  Family Programming

Written and directed by Don LaPlant

June 13, 2010:  The Pancake Defense and The High Road
Written by Alisha Dingus
Directed by Kenley Smith

May 12, 2010:  A Day at the Fair
Written by Robert Anthony
Directed by Chad Runyon

April 14, 2010: ich liebe dich

Written by Samantha Macher
Directed by Todd Ristau

March 10, 2010: The Prom

Written by Adam Hahn

February 10, 2010: Exit Strategy
Written by Kris Knutsen
Directed by Todd Ristau
Written as part of the First Drafts intensive course at Hollins University, this non-linear script covers the multiple past lives of two characters across a century or more in time where they have played out a dance between victim and prey.

January 13, 2010: A Name Tag and a Smile

Written and directed by Brian Turner

December 9, 2009: The UnXmas Story
Written by Jeff Goode
Directed by Kenley Smith

November 11, 2009: Treading Water
Written by Tim Cochran
Directed by Daryn Warner
An overprotective father does all he can to keep his daughter out of harm's way. His attempts to keep his daughter and wife safe are motivated by the memories of his painful past.

October, 2009: Don't Look Back
Written and Directed by Todd Ristau
A adaptation of the story of Orfeo and Eurydice.

September 9, 2009: Sasparilla
Written by Robert Plowman
Directed by Todd Ristau
A light hearted look at a modern cowboy torn between the call of adventure and the demands of family.

August, 2009: Tree Man
Written by Steven Schutzman
Directed by Steven V. Rice
The story of Helen and Charlotte, new friends in very different circumstances, watching their sons play in the backyard. Tensions and humor mount as the women share glass after glass of wine. When a mysterious tree man appears in the backyard, Helen and Charlotte connect in truthful, imaginative and even reckless ways, possibly opening the door to a different future.

Tree Man won first prize in the First Stage LA One Act Contest in 2004, the Irene Bashore Award, and has been produced in Chicago, Baltimore and New York City.

June, 2009: The Way to a Man's Heart
Written by April Drummond
Directed by Kenley Smith
In this lighthearted comedy two neighbors, women of different generations, vie for the affections of the same mailman.

May, 2009: Gavrilo
Written by Jonathan Van Gils
Directed by Todd Ristau
In the 1800's, a teenage "punk" named Gavrilo Pincep prepares to assassinate Archduke Franz Ferdinand while discussing the situation in a cafe with his history teacher. The short play deftly combines historical fact, political philosophy, and the very real human beings who put events into motion.

Gavrilo was the 2009 winner of the SETC High School Playwriting Contest.

April, 2009: Angel of Brooklyn
Written by Dwayne Yancey
Directed by Charlie Boswell
A heartwarming and hilarious play about God and Baseball.


2010 Lunchbox Playwrights

Anne Phelan is an award-winning Brooklyn-based playwright who has written more than 30 plays in her 20 year career.  She has been a Fellow of the Edward F. Albee Foundation, a dramaturg, a playwriting teacher, a guest judge for a number of prestigious playwriting awards, and the Playwright-in-Residence at the William Inge Theatre Festival, Chelsea Rep, and The Perishable Theatre.  In the past five years, three of her works have been published in the Smith & Kraus “Best Ten Minute Plays” series.  Her play “Knock” received a staged reading as part of the Chelsea Rep Lab’s Works-in-Progress series in August 2010.  Visit her website here.

D.T. Arcieri is a playwright and biologist who lives and works on Long Island, NY. His plays have had readings and productions across America, and in England and Australia. His work has also been published and optioned. He is a laboratory manager and adjunct professor in the Biology Department at Farmingdale State College, and holds MA degrees in Biological Sciences and Theatre Arts from Stony Brook University. Visit him at

2009-2010 Lunchbox Playwrights

Alisha Dingus is a rising senior at Randolph College in Lynchburg, VA (class of 2011).  A native of Bedford, VA, she wrote both The Pancake Defense and The High Road during a playwriting class with Studio Roanoke artistic director Kenley Smith.

Kris Knutsen is an actor and playwright currently based in Calgary, Alberta. Originally hailing from Seattle, Kris holds a B.A. in Theatre from Trinity Western University, and is currently pursuing her M.F.A. in Playwriting from Hollins University in Virginia. An adjunct professor of theatre at Trinity Western and Rosebud School of the Arts, Kris also directs “playmakings”: creating original theatrical works within a limited time frame with students and camps.

Brian Turner is a playwright who currently resides in Lewisburg, West Virginia. In addition to his writing, Biran is a talented actor who has been seen on our stage in Donnie and the Monsters, by Robert Gibbs and Ashville, by Lucy Thurber. He is also a regular writer/performer at No Shame Theatre.

Tim Cochran currently resides in Western Massachusetts where he is Assistant Professor of Theatre and Communication at Holyoke Community College. Before his move to Massachusetts, Tim was the director of the theatre program at Western Nebraska Community College and Artistic Director of Theatre West Summer Repertory. Tim has worked professionally as an actor, director, and designer in various theatres throughout the country and an MFA Playwriting candidate at Hollins University.

Robert Plowman is a Canadian playwright and dramaturge. A Halifax native and graduate of Dalhousie University, Robert co-founded Chestnut Tree Theatre in 1994. Most recently he has served as a member of Halifax’s Zuppa Theatre, in the creation of his play Radium City. A professional writer and editor, Robert’s work has appeared in The National Post, The Seattle Stranger, The Coast. He is currently pursuing graduate study of playwriting at Hollins University.

Steven Schutzman is a playwright and fiction writer, the author of twenty published plays and more than 30 different plays produced at such theatres as New Jersey Repertory, Cleveland Public and Baltimore Theatre Project. He is a five-time recipient of Maryland State Arts Council Individual Artist Grant Awards. You can find out more about his work at:

2008-2009 Lunchbox Playwrights

April Drummond is a Horizon student at Hollins University working toward her undergraduate theatre degree. She is an incredibly talented writer, director and actress. April's work has been seen on many local stages, including Hollins University, the Dumas Center, and Mill Mountain Theatre.

Jonathan Van Gils is a remarkably talented young writer, who at 17 has already been racking up professional credits, including winning the 2009 SETC High School Playwriting Contest with his short work Gavrilo. Jonathan is a student at Shorecrest Prepratory School in St. Petersburg, Florida. He is a member of Thespian Troupe 3140.

Dwayne Yancey has published several plays and some of his works have been produced in New York by professional theatres. Yancey lives in the Blue Ridge Mountains with his wife and two children, all of whom are veterans of the community theatre stage.

All content © Studio Roanoke, 2009