Mary McCallum and/or Kenley Smith will discuss writing historical fiction from creating plays from historical figures and events such as the life of Bessie Coleman, the Tulsa Riots, female concentration camp officers in the 1946 Stutthof war crimes trial in Gdansk, Poland, the first all-Black female battalion in WW2 and more.
Mary McCallum (Founder/Artistic Director/Executive Producer of SistaStyle Productions) received her B.S. and M.B.A. from Vanderbilt University. Her theatre acting credits include The Mountaintop, Fly, Girl!, The Face of Emmett Till, Never Been Home, Waitin’ 2 End Hell, A Raisin in the Sun, The Story, Lysistrata, The Desire, Pretty Fire, Long Time Since Yesterday, Louie and Ophelia, Hunger in Paradise and The Dance on Widow’s Row. She has also appeared in several films & T.V. One’s Fatal Attraction. Writing highlights: Her play SingleVille was a winner of the D.C. Black Theatre Festival One Act Battle and was a mainstage selection for the National Black Theatre Festival. Her play Six Triple Eight took top prize at the Atlanta Black Theatre Festival and Tampa Bay Theatre Festival. The movie version of SingleVille (writer, co-director, actress) won several awards in 2018 including Best Feature at the Twin Cities Black Film festival and the International Black Film Festival. Chasing Jeremy was a screenplay winner at the British Urban Film Festival and a finalist at the Urban World Film Festival. In 2019, she was a winner of the “Women Who Rock Nashville” award for the arts. In 2020, she was selected as librettist for Nashville Opera’s first mainstage commission One Vote Won.
Kenley Smith is the co-founder and director of TPS. He founded Studio Roanoke, a not-for-profit Virginia theatre that specialized in the development and production of new works from 2009 to 2012. He also was an Ingram playwright-in-residence at Nashville Repertory Theatre for the 2011-12 season and served as artistic associate for The Writing Room at Nashville Rep from 2015-2017. His full-length play, AKUMA SHIN was a MainStage selection of the 2015 Great Plains Theatre Conference and premiered last spring at Sacred Fools Theatre Company in Los Angeles. EMPIRES OF THE ETERNAL VOID developed through the Nashville Rep’s Ingram New Works Lab, was a MainStage Selection at the 2013 GPTC. DEVIL SEDAN was featured in 2008 at GPTC and has been produced by Baby D Productions in Omaha and by Studio Roanoke, as well as a professional production in 2013 at Playhouse Nashville. DEVIL SEDAN won first place at the Barter Theatre’s 2008 Festival of Appalachian Plays and Playwrights and took top honors in the West Virginia Writers, Inc., Joe McCabe Memorial Playwriting Competition in 2009. SHADE OF THE TREES, a 2010 Barter finalist, went up at Studio Roanoke in August, 2009, and his “Famous Bobby Pence” trilogy – consisting of DEVIL SEDAN, TWELVE STATIONS OF THE CROSS and THE BRAND New Testament - was produced there in 2010-11. MONKEY WRENCH was produced at Studio Roanoke in April, 2012. Kenley earned an M.F.A. in Playwriting and an M.A. in English and Creative Writing, both from Hollins University. He has taught playwriting at Randolph College, the Roanoke Regional Writers Conference, and the Fall Creative Writing Conference at Middle Tennessee State University.
Email us with your date preferences and budget, and we will contact you to discuss/confirm. Suggested fee is $250. We can work with budgets for HCBUs or programs with limited resources/special circumstances.
Email us with your date preferences and budget, and we will contact you to discuss/confirm. Suggested fee is $400/day plus travel expenses.