7 Cities, 14 Plays Tackling Motherhood | PAAL

PAAL reps are conquering the world – from Chicago to Boston to Amsterdam, pieces wrestling with motherhood and exploring the universal qualities are finding their way to the stage. Along the way, we’ve met some artists whose work wrestles with the same. We wanted to feature these artists here. There are galaxies to explore in the experience. Every piece is different, and each piece has a way to wake up the reality, transparency, and relevance of the motherhood experience.

Next step? Keep producing these pieces. Get them mainstream. Advocate for motherhood as the universally relevant experience it is.

AMSTERDAM FRINGE | PAAL Reps Around the World

VASKA, Horse Performance Company & Old Sound Room

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PAAL Steering Committee member Stephanie Hayes‘ theatre company Horse has been invited to the Amsterdam Fringe to perform an original work tackling the “obliteration of self,” gender inequality, motherhood, and more. Check out the rad video here – it’s wild. Just like sudden motherhood.

PHILADELPHIA | PAAL Partners and More

Check out the four plays featured at our partner organization Philadelphia Women’s Theatre Festival – we partnered with them for a festival dedicated entirely to motherhood in theatre, and the work was extraordinary in its diversity, sensitivity, and relevance. Keep an eye out for these powerful new plays:


We’ve gotten word of a new piece happening at the Philly Fringe that you can catch coming up:

ALMOST PREGNANT, Lisa Grunberger

Almost Pregnant: This tragic-comic play about motherhood, fate, and God gives an insider’s view of the art and science of sex without reproduction and reproduction without sex. Written by Lisa Grunberger; directed by Hamutal Posklinsky. Check it out at the Philly Fringe.

BOSTON |PAAL Rep in Production


THE VILLAINS’ SUPPER CLUB: A new comic book comedy about one super-mom, a new baby, and a lot of villains. Kapow! Galactic Girl fends off multiple dastardly villains. Woosh! She’s home in time to feed her baby and maybe even herself. When the last superhero on earth is also a new mom, there’s no time to lose. Can she save the planet and call back the pediatrician? Or will she fall victim to her archrival’s nefarious schemes? From Lila Rose Kaplan (Home of the Brave) comes an epic, irresistible comedy for anyone who’s ever had to be a superhero. Lila Rose Kaplan is a PAAL Co-Chief Rep in Boston.

NEW YORK | PAAL Highlights

THE BUMPS, Rachel Lauder Nalebuff & Deena Selenow

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The Bumps: A new play by Rachel Kauder Nalebuff & directed by Deena Selenow that is a reimagining of the theater production process. We will be interviewing Rachel and Deena for our national Best Practices handbook on the rehearsal structures they created to increase accessibility for pregnant artists. Check out the PAAL interview with the revolutionary team here.

MILK AND GALL, Mathilde Dratwa

MILK AND GALL: Raising a magnifying glass to the experience of being a new mother under Trump, Milk and Gallopens as Vera gives birth to a baby boy on election night 2016. Over the course of one seemingly unending year, tensions mount between Vera and the people in her life, including her husband, her second-wave feminist mother, and her Syrian-American best friend Amira. A surreal and fragmented play mimicking the experience of sleep-deprived new parents (featuring a shape-shifting baby played by a series of incongruous objects), Milk and Gallreveals what happens when the political and the personal push someone to the point of exhaustion. By MOMS IN FILM founder Mathilde Dratwa

THE POSTPARTUM PROJECT, The Postpartum Project (Now Casting NYC)

The PostPartum Project: Why don’t Americans talk about new motherhood? We’re opening up this conversation by meeting and new mothers and making their experience known. **THIS SHOW IS CASTING AND SEEKING MOTHER ACTORS IN NYC** Contact/Visit their page here.


PREGNANT PAUSE: Although Essie has mixed feelings about being pregnant – she’s a successful actress with a happy marriage – she warms to the idea. That is, until she learns she’s been offered a role on Broadway, the baby has a serious genetic disorder, and opening night is her due date. Haunted by her past, Essie examines her life’s work, worth and the future of her family in this one-woman play starring Amie Cazel*. This play was featured as part of Planet Connections.

WASHINGTON DC/CHICAGO (+ more) | PAAL Collaboration 

CRY IT OUT, Molly Smith Metzler

CRY IT OUT: “Three new mothers, three different backgrounds, one shared struggle…This insightful comedy takes an honest look at the absurdities of new motherhood, the dilemma of returning to work versus staying at home, and how class impacts parenthood and friendship.” PAAL was honored to collaborate with Northlight Theatre‘s performance of CRY IT OUT, with two of our Chicago PAAL Reps joining playwright Molly Smith Metzler and director Jessica Fisch for a talkback panel after a show. We look forward to collaborating with Molly more to generate dialogue around this piece – and let’s face it, it’s going up in so many cities, it’s a key driver to insisting on Motherhood as a universal story worthy of consideration. Check out Molly’s fierce letter to the LA Times that states it clearly, as well.

CHICAGO | PAAL Reps Working and A Shoutout

OVER THE MOON, Lydia Milman Schmidt (Erasing the Distance/DOCFEST)

From puberty to menopause, the female reproductive system affects mental health. Empathically examining fertility/infertility, illness, motherhood and more, the stories in Over the Moon provide insight and compassion into the female experience.
Adapters: Maura Kidwell* and Katie Relkin*
Director: Lydia Milman Schmidt [PAAL Chief Rep Chicago]
Performers: Claire Alpern [PAAL Social Rep] and Claudia DiBiccari

MOTHER LODE: “Mother Lode is about the perilous journey taken by first-time mother Lauryn as she attempts to keep her job in the music industry and care for her daughter while trying not to lose herself in the process. This large cast play with nine roles for women, deconstructs the mythology and sentimentality of motherhood to get to the bottom of what life with a baby really involves.” The play by Jenni Lamb had a reading on Aug. 2, 2018 – our official #IntlMotherArtistDay – How fitting!!

Have a play that should be listed?
Contact us here!


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