Shannon TL Kearns
UCP Membership, Affiliated Writer
founder and artistic director of Uprising Theatre Company, writer, believes stories can change the world.

Shannon TL Kearns is a transgender man, an ordained priest, and a believer in the power of stories. Selected recognition: Winner of the ScreenCraft Pitch competition, finalist for Bull City Film Festival for his pilot Transformed and Official Selection of the New Hope Film Festival for Transformed. He was selected to be a Lambda Literary Fellow in Screenwriting for 2022. 

Selected fellowships: Playwrights’ Center Jerome Fellowship, playwright in residence at the William Inge House, Great Plains Theatre Commons, Seven Devils’ Playwright Conference (2021 and 2022), Lambda Literary Fellow in playwriting, and a Finnovation Fellow. His play Body + Blood was selected for the Road Theatre’s 2022 Summer Playwrights Festival. in a stand of dying trees was selected for Cincinnati Lab Theatre’s New Works Festival. He was a semi-finalist for the O’Neill and a finalist for the Blue Ink playwriting award.

Shannon’s first book, In the Margins: A Transgender Man’s Journey with Scripture will be published by Eerdmans Publishing in August of 2022. He is a sought after speaker on transgender issues and religion as well as a skilled facilitator of a variety of workshops. 

His work with Brian G. Murphy at has reached more than a million people all over the world through videos, articles, and online courses and community. 

Shannon’s plays include Body+Bloodin a stand of dying treesLine of SightTwisted Deaths, The Resistance of My Skin, and Who Has Eyes To See. Shannon’s television pilots include: The Family Unit, Transformed, and Freedom, Kansas. He and his plays have been: a finalist for the Equity Library Theatre of Chicago’s Reading Series, 2019 TransLab, and American Stages 2019 New Play Festival, semi-finalist for the New Works series at Garry Marshall Theatre. He was a semi-finalist for SPACE on Ryder farm in 2020.


The 2021 Conference will feature the development and online presentation of  work of four playwrights, selected from 650 open submissions, a free online playwriting workshop led by 2021 featured playwright Tira Palmquist, PLUS two live and in person workshops in McCall, Idaho led by the founders of Boise's Campfire Theatre Festival. Company artists will also serve as mentors for students in the McCall Donnelly High School drama class.

​by Shannon TL Kearns
As whispers become a roar and threats mount, Joshua stands in front of his congregation plagued by doubts. He knows he is called and yet he can’t help but wonder if it makes a difference. If he can make a difference. If he’s enough. Or if maybe he’s too much of too many things-- transgender man, bartender, priest—too fractured to heal the suffering souls of others. But when, in a moment of chaos, he calls out in despair the answer is clear: there is more to this story.

​​Wednesday, June 16th at 8pm ET  ​​
7pm Central / 6pm Mountain / 5pm Pacific