2016: Emily Schwend
NICHOLAS WRIGHT SELECTS EMILY SCHWEND'S UTILITY WINNER OF THE 10TH ANNIVERSARY
YALE DRAMA SERIES
In Utility, Amber has two jobs, three kids and an eight-year-old's birthday party to plan. The house needs fixing up and her on-again, off-again husband, Chris just can't help but make things worse. As Amber struggles to keep things from boiling over, she finds herself a stranger to the person she once was and the person she thought she might be.
Winner Emily Schwend said, "When I started writing Utility, I wanted to show how small setbacks are not so small when there is absolutely no room for error in one's life. And how, for Amber, whose life has become almost entirely composed of endless chores, mounting frustrations, and daily crises, the value of truly being seen by another person is a rare, altruistic gift. I am so pleased that Utility was chosen for this award, which will help this story -- and Amber -- continue to be seen."
Ms. Schwend is originally from Texas. Her plays include The Other Thing, Take Me Back, South of Settling and Splinters. She is a 2016-2017 Radcliffe Institute Fellow at Harvard University where she will spend the academic year developing a new play. She is an alumna of the playwriting programs at Julliard and NYU.