Ariel Stess
She, her, hers
Core Writer
Evanston, IL
Playwright and director. Her work has been produced by Clubbed Thumb, New Georges, and The Bushwick Starr.
Biography

Ariel Stess is an L.A.-based playwright and director originally from Santa Fe, New Mexico. Her plays include The World My Mama Raised (Clubbed Thumb 2017), Heartbreak (The Bushwick Starr, co-produced by New Georges, Time Out Critic’s Pick 2015), I’m Pretty Fucked Up (Clubbed Thumb, Five Stars Time Out 2014), Tranquil, and KARA & EMMA & BARBARA & MIRANDA. She is a member of New Dramatists, a 2019-21 Core Writer of the Playwrights’ Center, and a New Georges Affiliated Artist.

Past residencies include 2016 Yaddo Writer’s Residency, 2016 SPACE on Ryder Farm with Playwrights Horizons, 2014 Mabou Mines Resident Artist Program, and 2013-14 New Georges Audrey Residency. Her work has been produced and/or developed at Playwrights Horizons, The Bushwick Starr, New Georges, Clubbed Thumb, and The Playwrights’ Center.

She holds a BA from Bard College and an MFA in Playwriting from Brooklyn College where she studied under Mac Wellman and Erin Courtney. She has taught at NYU, Brooklyn College, BMCC, and SUNY Purchase. She currently teaches playwriting and screenwriting at Northwestern University.

She’s been featured in The Brooklyn Rail, I Interview Playwrights, and Culturebot, and her writing has appeared in The Brooklyn Rail and Culturebot. 

Agent Information

Rachel Viola
212-500-3213
violar@unitedtalent.com

Plays

by Ariel Stess

The story of four women with interlocking experiences who are trying to rid themselves of the toxic men in their lives in order to become whole. Spoil alert: they succeed! The play uses monologues, narration, and humor to reveal what if feels like to navigate space as a woman and delves into how, depending on our generation and class, we can turn on each other and misunderstand each other. But it also shows how we can unite, find hope, and bolster one another through unexpected small moments. This play is hopeful and playful and requires no set!

Cast:
Kara - 40s Barbara - 60s Miranda - 30s Emma - 20s Matt/Doug - 60s Dennis - 40s George - 50s
by Ariel Stess

Spanning thirty years, this play is about trauma in love, the myth of the American cowboy, and the ways we grow and learn ...  and don't grow and learn.  

Cast:
Henry/Harry - 30s-60s Su - 30s-60s Ed - 40s Allan - 40s Daughter's Voice/Megan - 20s
by Ariel Stess

A play about fathers, daughters, siblings, and business partners. In a nutshell, a play about having your heart broken written in emotional utterances. This play feels like a comedy/poetry/song and can be performed with little to no set!

World premiere at The Bushwick Starr, co-produced by New Georges

Cast:
Steven - father Stara - daughter Stell - stepmother Brell - Steven's business partner/Stell's lover Mell - Steven's business partner/Stell's other lover Kell - Steven's business partner and lifelong friend Stammy - Steven's son/Stara's brother
by Ariel Stess

Set in Santa Fe, New Mexico, this comedy/drama looks at five teenagers' interlocking experiences on the day of a lockdown at their high school --- a portrait of attending high school in America in 2000.

World premiere produced by Clubbed Thumb.

Cast:
4 women, 4 men
by Ariel Stess

This painful comedy looks at the insidiousness of rape culture in America through the eyes of three teenage employees at a fitness, swim, and racquet club.

Cast:
4 women, 4 men
by Ariel Stess

A satire about the school-to-prison pipeline, mass incarceration, and women's reproductive rights. 

World premiere produced by Clubbed Thumb

Cast:
4 women, 5 men