Profile: Tess Light


Tess Light

Full Length Plays
Goodness in Things Evil (Drama, 3W/2M; 2013)
We are in a fictional, yet somehow very familiar, country, at war on two borders, the government distracted and strained, and the masses are impoverished but too defeated to protest.  Cady, a revolutionary leader or terrorist, depending on your perspective, is placed under house arrest by the regime she opposes.  The Prime Minister, Victoria, would have preferred to summarily execute Cady, but is convinced by her most trusted Chancellor, Andre, that Cady’s death could spark an uprising.  While incarcerated, Cady and Andre spar with their ideologies and recognize a commonality of goals between them, despite radically different ideas on proper action.  Meanwhile, Cady is guarded by a simple young woman whose devotion to the military — which feeds her — spurs Cady’s contempt, although she romantically appeals to Cady’s protege, Damon, during visits to his mentor.   Even as Cady begins to see the merit in a doctrine of nonviolence, a fluke accident (the result of his own regime’s corruption) takes the life of Andre’s son, pushing him to embrace Cady’s previous views for the necessity of violent reform — to the undoing of them all.
Tower of Magic (Comedy, 3W/4M; 2011)
Winner, New Play Contest at Theatre Conspiracy, 2012
Premier production: Theatre Conspiracy, Fort Myers FL, October 2012
2nd place, Stage West New Play Competition, 2013
Sue McFate is finding it difficult to announce her engagement.  For one thing, her family has never once heard she has a boyfriend.  For another, her intended husband doesn’t even know her real name.  Sue has come home to make the problematic announcement, but finds herself stymied when she realizes that her fiancé, Felix, will be a huge disappointment to her family, who include an obsessive ornithologist, a compulsive mezzo soprano, a murderous chef, an occasionally-mute savant and a split-personality linguist.  This crowd won’t be terribly impressed by Sue’s choice: Felix is (yawn) a civil engineer.
To Conceive Gods (Drama, 2W/2M; 2011)
Semi-finalist, Playwrights First Competition 2013
Semi-finalist (ultimate status pending), New Voices Playwriting Competition, Actor’s Theatre of Charlotte, 2014
Helen, a biophysicist, is simultaneously coping with life in the form of pregnancy, life represented by the death of her lover, and the artificial life she is attempting to create in her laboratory.  As scientific success dawns, Helen benumbs herself to Sam’s death, her own life, and that of her child, as she is forced to ask whether a hypothetical life form in a petrie dish has greater value to the “mundane” life in her belly.  And if it does, then how valuable is any living human?
Juliet is Living Well (Drama, 2W/2M; 2010)
Honorable Mention (#55 of appx. 1000), Writer’s Digest Drama competition, 2011
Angelo Leontes, cruel, controlling and cold, has decided his marriage to Juliet is over.  Accordingly, he boots her out the door and prepares for a new, unencumbered life.  Juliet, however, is far from dismayed.  Her marriage was unhappy, her life stifled, and she’s likewise ready to start enjoying herself again.  First up on the agenda: a little psychological revenge.
The Cadence of a Dream (Drama, 3W/4M; 2009)
Semi-finalist (1 of 12), Dayton Playhouse FutureFest, 2010
Marty is visiting his boyhood home in Chicago for the first time in many years.  As a child, he lived in this building, caring for his alcoholic and self-absorbed mother, dreading visits from his erratic and violent father.  And yet he was happy.  His child self, secure in his mother’s love, if not much else, simply accepted that sometimes things are bad, and gained a certain stability from the nurturing presence of his elderly neighbors.  Now an adult and a father himself, Marty returns on a nostalgic whim, to find the memories as vivid as real life — living, in fact — just as he left them when he was nine years old.
Stalking Serendipity (Comedy, 2W/2M/1 either; 2008)
Finalist (1 of 12), AACT New Play Festival, 2013
Finalist (1 of 5), Heiress Productions Playwriting Competition, 2012
Upon narrowly missing a traffic accident, Elsa, a comfortable, perhaps complacent, suburbanite, faces the realization that we are one fluke away from tragedy, every moment of our lives.  Therefore, she reasons, we must likewise be one fluke from bliss.  With that in mind, she launches a campaign to entice chance to be on her side, to create positive random events.  Chance, however, remains indifferent to her preferences.
The Supper Hour in Hell (Comedy, 5W/6M; 2008)
Over the course of a single meal, The Supper Hour in Hell follows five relationships along the hairpin turns everyone has faced at some point, with some approaching the end of their run, while others are embarking on new adventures.
One Act Plays
The Last Days of Wonder (Drama/Comedy, 3W; 2012) 
2nd place, Dubuque Fine Arts Players National One-Act Playwriting Contest, 2013
Premier production: Mindframe Theater, Dubuque IA, August 2013
Finalist (1 of 7), Arts & Letters Prize for Drama, 2013
Winner (one of a few), Eden Prairie Players New Play Contest, 2014
Mother is dying, and there ain’t a single thing her daughters, Sue and Imogen, can do about it. Imogen, in her flighty way, can accept this, or can pretend to — which is all the same to her.  But Sue has always been closer to Mother, with a relationship built less on shared drama and more on shared truth, and she’s not letting her mom give up without a fight. But, truth is, Sue is acting in her own interest, unable to see what is best for her ill mother.
Alpha Omega Pi (Comedy, 1W/2M/2 either; 2009)
In their final exam of Divinity School, for their Creative Creation class, four students tackle a purely artistic task: create something resilient, whose exact nature is left to their (rather juvenile) preference.  Will the passing grade go to Earth, Flora, Fauna, or Man?
10-minute Plays
The Fall (Comedy, 1W/1M; 2010)
Reading, “Benchwarmers”, Santa Fe Playhouse, 2010
Premier production: “8×103” Festival of Short Works, Los Alamos Little Theater, Los Alamos NM, September 2011
Shimmer (Comedy, 1W/2M; 2012)
Premier production: 8×10 TheatreFest, Weathervane Playhouse, Akron OH, August 2013
Escaping the Funhouse (Drama, 1W/1M; 2011)
Reading, “Benchwarmers”, Santa Fe Playhouse, 2011

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