Kirt Shineman is a Phoenix-based playwright, dramaturg, and Professor of Communication. Kirt has been a playwright at the TheaterWorks Westival, Great Plains Theatre Conference, Kennedy Center American College Theater Festival, The Hormel New Works Fest, Crede Writers' Retreat, DC Black Theatre Conference, and a few more. His topics range from the personal (Allie Opp’s Last Fantastic Day – Emerging Artists Theater, Off-Broadway) to the political (Forbidden Glass- O’Neill semi-finalist, Chicago Pride Films & Plays). His play, Germs and Viruses, (O’Neill semi-finalist, Sundance Theater Lab finalist, & NNPN finalist) had its premiere at Arizona State University Mainstage Theater in 2015. He has degrees from Arizona State University (MFA- Dramatic Writing), Emerson College (MA- Communication), and Colorado State Un. (Rhetoric & Theater).
As playwright, dramaturg, and teacher, Kirt received his Master of Fine Arts in Dramatic Writing at Arizona State University. His play Germs and Viruses received a production as part of ASU’s Main Stage Studio Series. Kirt''s play AIRDROP received a workshop reading at the Hormel New Works Festival and a staged reading in Hawaii at the KCACTF Region VIII One Act Finalist. Sea Fairies received a run this spring as a part of Brelby Theatre's season in Glendale, AZ. Currently, Kirt is working on a Chet Baker musical, a sequal to Sea Fairies entitled Sky Island, and his play Junction Creek (second in the trailer park series) will be workshoped at TheaterWorks in Peoria, AZ, summer of 2016.
In Levant, a place just like Syria, a conspiracy begins to grow, and people in Levant begin to believe in the existence of a hidden reality behind the familiar reality, the idea that what one thought was going on all the time was in fact, in large part, an illusion or deception. A blogger, Seban, tries to rally support for the pro-democracy movement, but is caught in a quagmire of twisted and humorous intrigue. Who will believe the propaganda for the truth, or the truth for the propaganda?
In 2011, when reporter Anton Suryapin is arrested by the Belarus KGB, his pregnant girlfriend, Polina, calls on all of her friends to help with his release. She contacts Tomas and Hannah, owners of Sweden's ad agency Studio Total. In an effort to help Polina’s boyfriend, on 4th July, 2012, Tomas and Hannah illegally fly their small plane from Lithuania to Belarus and drop nearly nine-hundred parachute-wearing teddy bears on Minsk. The teddy bears land unhindered, with their messages of freedom, but the fall-out from the airdrop on everyone involved, especially Polina, Anton, Tomas, and Hannah, changes their lives forever. (Based on true events.) The airdrop event emboldened many Belarusians to rise up to their inherent status. They discovered their authoritative presence. Through the teddy bear drop the Swedes try to get the Belarusians to rise up to resurrect themselves; to awaken after years of hibernation and find their own teeth.
What story would a refugee tell to get freedom and love? When Javad escapes from Iran, he needs help attaining asylum in Turkey. He encounters American reporter, Barry. Through stories of forbidden passion Javad sweet-talks Barry into reuniting Javad with his true love, Harun, and getting him an interview at the embassy. Unluckily, Barry’s thoughtful assistance has unforeseen consequences for everyone.
When real-life artist, Egon Schiele, is charged with raping and kidnapping of a young girl, his trial becomes a landmark and his artwork is deemed pornography. Charged with immoral and depraved behavior, Egon fights for his freedom. His ordeal places him, his art and his lifestyle with his girlfriend, Wally, on trial. The court case calls into question Egon's radical upbringing and his development as an artist. Will he be erased or will he draw freely?
Inspired by real events, Benkelman is about the cycle of poverty and women. In the 60’s as America’s feminist movement was in full swing, and Robin-Sue, a down and out young woman, in a maledominated small town, realizes life is nothing like she planned. Restless and unfulfilled in an oppressive (under-paying) job, no prospective suitors to help her get out of the stifling town of Benkelman, Nebraska. She finds her only joy with a race-car driver, Donald, to whom she pins her freedom. But when reality sets in and she finds freedom and her dreams elude her, she goes to the extreme to escape. Benkelman is a riveting look at the danger that can come from a life unlived.
Before the passage of anti-stalking laws in 1990, women were hamstrung in their efforts to stop stalkers or sexual harassment. In 1983, when Julie-Ann is the first of her family to head off to college, she doesn't know who to ask for help when her swim coach begins stalking and sexually harassing her. She finds help in her "room-mate's" boyfriend, Don. The mistakes she makes in her transition compound until there is no way to rectify her choices. Or is there?
While Sue prepares for her son’s 18th birthday, she awaits important news. Meanwhile she recounts why she became Allie Oop the Clown, and how being a clown helps her battle life’s difficulties.
Months after the death of her father Mayre Griffiths, nicknamed Trot, encounters a few mischievous classmates on the coast of southern California. The mean boys play “keep-away” with her newly crafted pearl necklace, with a medal from her dead father. She freezes, and cannot defend herself. Her constant companion Cap'n Bill, a retired sailor with a wooden leg, comes to her rescue. After scaring away the boys, Cap’n Bill confronts Trot about a visit he and Trot’s mother received; Trot’s teacher and principle came to the house looking for Trot, who had not been to school in weeks. Why? Trot explains she’s spent most of her days roaming the beach, avoiding the bullies, and swimming in the ocean, diving for pearls, and she even found a large pink pearl. Concerned, Cap'n Bill rows the two of them to where Trot found the infamous pink pearl. Trot and Cap’n Bill are attacked by SeaDevils. Thus begins their adventure with the Sea Fairies as Trot learns about the ocean animals, the beauty of the deep, surmounts her grief over the death of her father, and through it all she finds the strength to take on the local bullies.
December 1975, after Christmas, and Agatha Christie must finish her autobiography and the final novel before the new year. Yet, Agatha is fixated on an event in her past when Nancy Neele stole her husband. With Mary Westmacott’s help they contemplate what it would be like to kill Nancy. When Nancy turns up dead, Agatha and Mary investigate. Even though Agatha considered murdering Nancy, did she really do it, or is her reality disappearing?
Welcome to the prestigious world of Master Sommeliers. An impressive group of wine experts, who passed an exam with one of the lowest success rates in the world. Claire wants to be part of the group. But when the Court of Master Sommeliers revokes their licenses because of a cheating scandal, Claire’s dream is corked. She and her husband, Parker, lose their new apartment; Ke loses his visa, and Cy is demoted to waiter. Claire’s mother-in-law, Sandrine, jumps to the rescue and readies them for the re-exam. All the while Claire searches for the cheater. A truly drunk on life comedy about lies, loves, and sour grapes.
My play, Moments Before, was recorded for EARPLAYS. with Technical Director / Recording Engineer - Donald T. Woodard; Production / Stage Manager - Julie Lee. Posted in April at: EARPLAYS Originals | thestudio (thestudiophx.org)
My play, A Life Assembled, is a 2019 Finalist in the annual City Theatre National Award for Short Playwriting contest. With more than 700 submissions this year, it is one of only 20 Contest Finalists, and it’s a play they truly enjoyed. Thursday, May 30 - Sunday, June 23, Miami, Fl.
The Mid-American Theater Conference did a workshop of Tainted Love, my 10-min. play about the reunion of two brothers in a hospice. As one brother, Cameron, dies from AIDS, the other brother, Allen, attempts to connect, to forgive, and discover the brother he never understood.
Sea Fairies, a play for families, opened to strong reviews at Brelby Theater in Glendale, AZ. Dixie University's Second Acts New Works Festival presents Sea Fairies in a concert reading, April 2016.