Calley Anderson
 

CALLEY N.  ANDERSON

Photo Credit: Herman Seidl

Photo Credit: Herman Seidl

I am a Southern Black Woman Playwright. 

To me, the Southern Black Woman Playwright brings forth the authenticity of the sum parts of its whole. The intake of breath before each word is full of the love, individuality, heat, passion, grit, church, and "I've always taken care of you and no one else will do it like I will"-ness that only the amalgam can hold. The embrace this identity, my identity, gives me is unlike any other. Its breeze follows me, flows through me, is me.

And it has me forever. 

 

ABOUT CALLEY

Administratively and creatively talented, CALLEY ANDERSON is an up-and-coming playwright from Memphis, Tennessee. Her ten-minute plays have received five festival productions to date (Emerald Theatre Company, TN 2016; Pride Theater at Chandler, VT 2017; Stable Cable Lab Co., NY 2017; InVersion Theatre, NY 2018; Fade to Black Fest, TX 2018). Anderson is a proud graduate of Memphis Central High School and Davidson College, where she received her BA in English with a Concentration in Film and Media Studies.

Post graduation, Anderson spent three years in the Memphis non-profit arts sector. She first served as the Programs Coordinator for Hattiloo Theatre, one of few free-standing black repertory theaters in the country. During her time at Hattiloo, Anderson fulfilled additional roles — Interim Managing Director, Stage Manager (If Scrooge Was a Brother, The Wiz), Assistant Production Manager (If Scrooge Was a Brother, Hoodoo Love, King Hedley II, Purlie Victorious), and House Manager throughout Hattiloo’s ninth and tenth seasons. After completing her tenure at Hattiloo, she served as the Diversity & Inclusion Manager for the Memphis Symphony Orchestra during their 2017-2018 season. Following this, Anderson moved to New York City to pursue her Master's degree in Playwriting. She is currently in her second year at The New School - School of Drama. Yet, she has not strayed far from her non-profit sensibilities—she spent the past summer and part of her Spring semester interning in the Marketing & Communications department at EmblemHealth in New York City.

Her influence expands beyond her page-to-stage activities. Anderson is one of thirteen Memphis Hub fellows of the Salzburg Global Seminar's Young Cultural Innovators, having attended Session IV Forum at the Schloss Leopoldskron in Salzburg, Austria in October 2017 and the second US regional Hub meeting in New Orleans in April 2018. She was an inaugural Facing Together Ambassador for Facing History and Ourselves - Memphis, as well as an inaugural training facilitator for the Memphis Grizzlies TEAM Up Youth Mentoring Partnership before leaving Memphis for New York. 

Anderson is a current member of the Dramatists Guild through the First Year Out Program and is one of two co-coordinators over the New School for Drama's student-led Affinity Groups.

RECENT

PRODUCTIONS

EVERYONE BUT US

CO-LAB 2 PRODUCTION | MAY 2019

THE NEW SCHOOL FOR DRAMA | NEW YORK, NY

TRICK OR TREAT? 

FADE TO BLACK 10-MINUTE PLAY FESTIVAL | JUNE 2018

SHABACH ENTERPRISE | HOUSTON, TX

THE JULIES: A KINDA SORTA ADAPTATION OF STRINDBERG'S MISS JULIE

STAGED READING | JUNE 2018

THE NEW SCHOOL FOR DRAMA | NEW YORK, NY

 


Education

THE NEW SCHOOL - SCHOOL OF DRAMA

MFA Candidate - Playwriting
Expected to Graduate May 2020

DAVIDSON COLLEGE

BA - English; Concentration - Film & Media Studies
Graduated May 2014

Awards

Finalist, 2017-2018 Many Voices Fellowship

Vereen Bell Memorial Award for Creative Writing in Playwriting (February 2014) - Davidson College
Excerpt, "Davis Miller"

Charles E. Lloyd Award for Excellence in Nonfiction (March 2014) - Davidson College
Excerpt, "More than a Dream and a Mountaintop: Emphasizing Location, Education, and Disingenuous Narratives of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. in Children's Literature

NEWS

2019

Calley will be spending the summer assisting playwright Michael Weller at CATF in West Virginia.

2017

The 'Hell is Normal' rehearsal process is featured in this blog post by The New School. 

2016

Calley is featured in an article about Emerald Theatre Company's inaugural 10-minute play festival. 

 

selected works 

Click here to read excerpts of calley’s work via New Play Exchange.

EVERYONE BUT US

One Act (65 minutes) | 2M, 3W

In the world just beyond a mirror's reflection, five co-workers try their best to do their jobs well: be a voice in someone's head and make them happy. But what happens when the world outside the mirror blends with the world inside it?

Created for Co-Lab 2 - New School for Drama


COLLECTIVE EMPATHY FORMATION FROM 1968 AND 2018

One Act (50 minutes) | 2M, 3W

Five research study participants gather in a conference room. Their task appears simple and straight-forward: select 10 events from the year 1968 that they feel impacted the nation’s conscious and view of empathy. What transpires is a reflection of what is seen, heard, and missed when history, memory, and living bodies must merge in unflinching ways. 

Created for Co-Lab 1.2 - New School for Drama


hell is normal

Devised (40 minutes) | 2M, 3W

Lillian is the newest resident to Pit-A-Hell, U.S.A. The residents attempt to show her that "Hell is normal," but she struggles to adjust after realizing that disenfranchisement and lynching are part of "normal". Plus, there's a Ring Leader who is keen on keeping everyone in line and under control. Hell is Normal journeys along with Lillian as she tests the limits of this strange world, making friends and enemies alike. 

Created for Co-Lab 1.1 - New School for Drama in partnership with Tectonic Theatre Project


TRICK OR TREAT?

10-Minute Play | 4M

There's a cultural touchstone in Black America that, if you see another Black person running, you follow without question. But what happens after you've followed? Where do you run? What do you discover? Trick or Treat? gives comedic answers to those questions while highlighting the realities of what it means to be a Black man in America. 


carousel

10-Minute Play | 3M

Does a spark always start a fire? Or can it die out? In this 10-minute play, two young men engage in a tête-à-tête about truth, self, and love at a lonely airport baggage claim.