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The Tony Award®-winning Alley Theatre is honored to announce Liz Duffy Adams’ critically acclaimed steamy drama Born with Teeth, a dramatization of the writing collaboration between Shakespeare and Marlowe, is a finalist for the 2023 Steinberg-ATCA New Play Award. Developed in the Alley All New Reading Series, Born with Teeth made its world premiere in May 2022 during Alley Theatre’s 75th season under the direction of Alley Theatre’s Artistic Director Rob Melrose.

The American Theatre Critics Association (ATCA) announced six finalists for the 2023 Harold and Mimi Steinberg/ATCA New Play Award, recognizing the playwrights who produced the best scripts that premiered professionally outside of New York City in 2022. The top award, which carries a $25,000 prize and two citations valued at $7,500 each, will be presented on May 6, 2023, at South Coast Repertory in Costa Mesa, Calif., as part of the annual Pacific Playwrights Festival. At $40,000, Steinberg–ATCA is the largest national new play award program of its kind. The Alley was nominated in 2002, which it won for Horton Foote’s The Carpetbagger’s Children.

“I’m so delighted that Born with Teeth is a finalist for the Steinberg Playwright Awards,” shares Alley Theatre Artistic Director Rob Melrose. “I have been in love with this play since I first heard it at an intimate reading Liz Duffy Adams arranged in New York for us to hear it out loud around a table. I’m so grateful to my whole team at Alley Theatre for making our world premiere production so extraordinary and to the Guthrie Theatre and Artistic Director Joe Haj for giving the production a second life in their current season. I also want to thank Alley’s Director of New Work, Liz Frankel, for her tireless support of new plays and to everyone who worked on this play at both the Guthrie and the Alley, especially the actors Matthew Amendt and Dylan Godwin and our stage manager Jocelyn Thomson.”

Alley Theatre’s production of Born with Teeth has moved beyond the Alley to Guthrie Theater in Minneapolis, Minnesota in March – April 2023 and will go to Asolo Rep in Sarasota, Florida in February – March 2024.

Critical acclaim for Born with Teeth:

  • “The play is above all a showcase for a couple of heroic performances by Matthew Amendt, as Kit, and Dylan Godwin, as Will.” – Houston Chronicle
  • “Under the able direction of Rob Melrose, Amendt and Godwin build, destroy, and build again the tense arena of their friendship and collaboration that like a Jenga tower constantly verges on collapse. But instead of wooden blocks, their building tools are words that evoke the sounds and sensibilities of Elizabethan dialogue without becoming lost in its complex syntax.” – The Courier
  • “Godwin and Amendt, through Adams’ perceptive blueprint, build a most impressive edifice to honor both of them.” – Houston Press
  • “Director Rob Melrose’s captivating production grabs you by the throat and rarely lets up.”Star Tribune

Alley Theatre cast of Born with Teeth included Alley Resident Acting Company member Dylan Godwin as Will and Matthew Amendt as Kit.

Alley Theatre design team of Born with Teeth included Scenic Designer Michael Locher, Costume Designer Alejo Vietti, Lighting Designer Carolina Ortiz Herrera, Music & Sound Designer Cliff Caruthers.

SPONSORS: The 2022 Alley Theatre production of Born with Teeth was sponsored by the Edgerton Foundation as well as the 2021-22 Season sponsor United Airlines, the official airline of the Alley Theatre.
Alley Theatre, one of America’s leading nonprofit theatres, is a nationally recognized performing arts company led by Artistic Director Rob Melrose and Managing Director Dean R. Gladden. The Alley is committed to developing and producing theatre that is as diverse as the Houston community. The Alley produces up to 11 plays and nearly 400 performances each season, ranging from the best current work and classic plays to new plays by contemporary writers. Home to a full-time resident company of actors and expert artisans in all theatre crafts, the Alley engages theatre artists of every discipline – actors, directors, designers, composer, playwrights – who work on individual productions throughout each season as visiting artists.
Alley Theatre performs at the Meredith J. Long Theatre Center which is comprised of two state-of-the-art theatres: the 774-seat Hubbard Theatre and the 296-seat Neuhaus Theatre. The Alley reaches over 200,000 people each year through its performance, education, and community engagement programs.