PLAYWRITING BACKGROUND

Joan Milburn began playwriting when she was 14 years old and a freshman at Booker T. Washington High School for the Performing and Visual Arts. Under the direction of Elly Lindsay, and later Guinea Bennett Price, Joan moved through beginning playwriting classes to advanced by the time she was a junior in high school. In Joan's junior year she had her very first play, Anabolic, produced in Booker T.'s 10 Minute Playwriting Festival, and knew that she had found another passion to foster. That summer, Joan went on to attend Stagedoor Manor Performing Arts Training Center. While there, her play Shooting Stars and Satellites was chosen to be produced and published in the book "Dramafest" with Stagedoor Manor in association with Samuel French. Following this influential summer, she continued writing, and during her senior year she was once again chosen for Booker T.'s 10-Minute Festival with her play Blue. Following its premiere there, it advanced onward to represent Booker T. at the Irma P. Hall Play Festival, where it won gold. That winter, Joan received the Merit Award for her playwriting portfolio in the National Young Arts Competition, being the only playwright from her school honored for the year 2015. She then went on to have three short plays (Blue, Basketcase, and Shooting Stars and Satellites) produced in the Festival of the Kid at the Stage West Regional Theatre in Fort Worth, Texas. After senior year and the completion of her playwriting program, Joan returned to Stagedoor Manor where she had her second play, When Harvey Wore a Blue Tie, published. Coming into college, Joan knew she wanted to grow as a writer as much as possible during the next four years. During this time, she also began shaping her writing style: experimenting with satire and other styles and structures. She soon found that she had a special interest in writing about mental health, feminist narratives, and family structures, and this further influenced the development of her body of work. While at Southwestern, her plays Blue, Adverse Intentions, and Sightlines received productions through Southwestern's Mask and Wig Organization, and she was also a co-writer on The Texas Beauty Pageant Murder, which Southwestern performed at the 2018 Edinburgh Fringe Festival. During Joan's senior year, she took a playwriting class with Elizabeth Doss of Austin's Paper Chairs Theatre Co.. Following this, Joan produced a reading of her first full-length play, Brace For Impact, in the spring of 2019. After graduating with her B.A that same year, Joan headed to New York where she would be a playwriting apprentice during Vassar/NYSAF's Powerhouse Season. While there, Joan apprenticed with Beth Henley on her new play Lightning, and also wrote and developed several scripts, including one of her favorite pieces: Honey...She's Home. Since graduating and attending Powerhouse, her play LAZER GATOR received a production with The Resilience Theatre Group, and her play The Porch was produced through Paper Kraine Theatre in NYC. All of these experience led Joan to conclude that she belongs in the sphere of new work development. Combining this with her passion for arts and activism, Joan has recently partnered with Kristen Ragusa and Adi Corbo in starting The Citadel of Playwrights, where their goal is to not only focus on new work, but also the development of the writer. More information can be found on the Citadel's Website!