Let's make things!
I'm a dramaturg. That means I want to know everything about your play- what it has been, what it is, what it could be- so that I can help you make sure it becomes the next thing it's meant to be. A dear friend said they think of me more like a theatrical midwife, helping my collaborators "arrive at the destination in a natural, organic, and fulfilling way." That feels right.
To convince you that we should hang out and talk about art, here are some nice things that some really delightful and talented people have said about our time together:
"Harley is one of those very rare people who can make the process of talking about a new play feel like a natural, and often joyful, thing. When she asks questions about my work, the questions demonstrate such a clear connection to, understanding of, and care for the piece that I never feel that defensiveness that can creep up when sharing something new. "
--Maddie Dennis-Yates (INKubator Playwrights Cohort 2020-21)
"Harley was able to pose questions towards my understanding of my own work, and suggest real, do-able paths for me to follow to actualize my play. Harley's openness to the possibilities within my play allowed me greater curiosity to dig deeper. She helped me discover a sound, honest confidence in what I had been working on, and the responsibilities of the work to come."
--Matt Lopez (Tennessee Williams Theater Festival Fellow 2019)
"Harley treats every project as something precious, devoting her fullest attention to everything from the 10 minute play that was written in a flash to the 3 hour magnum opus you have spent the last 4 years working on. She attacks these projects with equal fervor, curiosity, and generosity of spirit. I have worked with Harley as a producer, as an actor, as a writing partner, and as a collaborator, and I can say with full confidence there is no one I would rather have by my side on a new play." -- Dara Pohl Feldman (Artistic Director, Ruthless Nightingale Theatre Company)
Do you have a concept you're excited about? Have you got a draft down but you're not sure where to go next?
Send it my way!
My initial consultations are free- if you'd like to continue working on the ideas I bring to the table, I charge for subsequent services based on an affordable sliding scale.
If you're still not convinced, here are words from some more brilliant and kind people:
"I was at a point in my play where I knew I wanted to put it up in front of humans but I felt stuck, didn't know where it was headed, didn't even want to write it anymore. And then you came in with such gentleness and, honestly, reverence for the piece. I remember before our first meeting, you read through the script FOUR times. You knew the play better than I did. I was so surprised that someone could care that much about something I wrote, be that willing to spend so much time with it, that it got me excited to work on the play again. [...] You helped me make so many discoveries about the play and the characters, and you helped me to feel confident in making those huge changes to the script. When you and I finished, the play was telling an entirely different story than when we began, and I think a more important story. I mean...people cried when they saw it. And not just my mom!!! People who I have never seen cry before cried at my play! Plus, you gave me the tools I needed going forward in writing new projects. You helped me give purpose to every moment in the play."
-- Molly Burdick, Light Green Moss Playwright
"For me, sharing a piece of writing (especially a play that is still a work in progress) is a vulnerable position to be in, and you always made me feel safe enough to take risks and try new things with the play. I loved how thought provoking your questions were. Writing this play, there were a lot of aspects of each character that I took for granted, and you encouraged me to reevaluate both character traits and the play's structure, which ultimately made the piece flow better and made the characters stronger.
By the time you signed on as dramaturg, I had been working on the piece for about two years. From the first time we met, it was clear to me that you completely understood my goals with the piece, and you were the fresh set of eyes we needed to make the show what it became. I was amazed with how prepared, present, and professional you were throughout the whole process. In addition to sharing your brilliant mind with me and the production, your spirit and your positive energy made the process remarkably enjoyable. You're an absolute pleasure to work with. I always felt respected when speaking with you. Sometimes I have to talk in circles before making the point that I'm trying to get across, and you are such a good listener and never judged as I was working to talk things out. You're a gem, and I'm grateful that I had the privilege of working with you."
-- Lindsey Ruzza, In The Spotlight Playwright
“Harley's work ethic is outstanding. The amount of discipline and dedication that she brings into everything she does makes her the most reliable collaborator I have ever worked with. There is just no doubt about whether something is going to come to completion when Harley is part of the team. She is an incredible listener and as a dramaturg, her attention to detail and pure joy for the search of information makes even the most dense USCIS websites become a source of pure wonder. When it comes to New Work, her generous heart and brilliant mind empower even the most insecure artist in the ways in which she is able to clear the path and help people organize their thoughts. Harley's research and artistry brings solid grounding and by doing so, expands possibilities to unimaginable realms. She is incredible with deadlines and her organized enthusiasm inspired the whole team to have realistic yet ambitious plans that make the project much more than what we originally planned.”
-- Ludmila C. Brito, Company Manager of the International Festival of Arts and Ideas
"I do not consider myself a writer and certainly not a playwright, so your thoughtful, positive and individualized feedback has been really crucial in building my confidence and comfortability when sharing my writing with a group. I also think one of your areas of expertise is in building an atmosphere of non-judgmental collaboration and perspective-sharing, honing in on what each of us does really well and making sure everyone else is aware of it. I trust you to recognize and value the individual risks we all take whenever we write and share our work. I feel at ease in our sessions, knowing that the feedback I receive will not only be clear and concise, but it will also help me clarify what I am really trying to say with every piece, making it so much easier to go back and edit on my own."
-- Annie Winneg, theatre and film actress
"Harley has been extremely generous with her time and expertise. She is perceptive, and asks all the right questions as a dramaturg helping develop plays. She has now looked over two of my plays, and has helped shed some light and wisdom onto what is there, and given a few paths to explore for the next drafts. Her feedback is not invasive or intrusive, but invaluable; and I have gained a great deal of insight into my work and the way it will be perceived by the outside world. As an emerging writer, director, and producer (and as a member of APAP) Harley has my highest recommendation."
-- Ethan Fox, producer, director, and media designer for the stage