MORE ABOUT JENNIFER MAISEL
The daughter of an adhesives manufacturer and a teacher, Jennifer Maisel grew up in a picture perfect Long Island suburb where she once found a dead man in her driveway – which may account for one reviewer’s assessment of her writing as a “sort of David Lynch on estrogen”.
“Jennifer Maisel evokes a fascinating millennial dreamscape of urban dread, psychic
fragmentation and imperfect human connection. Maisel demonstrates a sure hand and a
formidable flair for the mysterious.” Los Angeles Times
Her The Last Seder premiered Off-Broadway with Gaby Hoffmann, Greg Mullavey and Sarah Winkler after productions around the country and abroad. Before its critically acclaimed world premiere at Antaeus theatre in the fall of 2019, Jennifer developed Eight Nights with the Berkshire Playwrights Lab, Bay Street Theatre, Playmakers, Moving Arts and Antaeus; that production was nominated for nine coveted Ovation Awards and won for Best Playwriting. The play was also part of nationwide fundraiser for HIAS called 8 nights of EIGHT NIGHTS. EIGHT NIGHTS opens at Detroit Public Theatre in the fall of 2023.
Her Out of Orbit was workshopped at the Gulf Shore New Play Festival as well as the Sundance Theatre Lab, and was awarded an Ensemble Studio Theatre/Alfred P Sloan rewrite commission for plays about science and technology before making the 2016 Kilroy List and winning both the Stanley Award and the Woodward Newman Award for Drama. It premiered at Williamston Theatre and Bloomington Playwrights Project in 2018.
Backstage included Jennifer amongst their “favorite female playwrights” and The Dramatist Magazine named her one of their “Ones to Watch. She was recently listed by Theatre Nerds as one of 30 Female Playwrights You Should Know.
Her Pen West Literary finalist There or Here had its London premiere in January, 2018. Her @thespeedofJake, also a Pen West Literary finalist, premiered in LA with Playwrights’ Arena. Jennifer was one of seven playwrights commissioned by Center Theatre Group and Playwrights’ Arena to create The Hotel Play, a site-specific work created in commemoration of the 25th anniversary of the LA riots.
Jennifer was one of five writers in the prestigious Humanitas 2018 PlayLA workshop, where she wrote her play BETTER.
“GO! Maisel skillfully maneuvers the drama beyond the tolls of the illness; in her conflicted characters, she also illuminates the contemporary woman’s struggle for love and identity.” LA Weekly
In April 2021 she was the Travis Bogard Artist in Residence with a Tao House fellowship, writing a new play called Yellow Wallpaper 2.0 2020 on Eugene O’Neill’s former estate, subsequently workshopped at Great Plains Theatre Conference and read by the Neo-Political Cowgirls at their Andromeda’s Sisters event. Tao House asked Jennifer to return with the play to feature it as part of their 2023 O’Neill festival.
“…a thought-provoking play that touches on reproductive yearnings, sexual desire, cultural imperialism and more.” The New York Times
A graduate of Cornell University, Jennifer received her MFA from NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts’ Dramatic Writing Program. Jennifer has been a guest lecturer and speaker at UC Riverside,Fordham University, University of the Arts, Cal State Long Beach, the UCLA Extension Writers Program, AFI, the David Hwang Playwriting Institute, Cornell University, Footlights in Washington DC and Claremont College. She has taught playwriting at USC, and currently teaches television and screenwriting for the Stephens College Low Residency Master of Fine Arts program.
In the world of film and television, Jennifer recently developed an original pilot called The 626 with Super Deluxe and adapted two Jane Green novels – Tempting Fate and To Have and to Hold – for television. She worked on a movie about campus rape and institutional betrayal with Just Singer Entertainment. Her screenplay, Lost Boy, was filmed starring Virginia Madsen. She wrote The Assault and The March Sisters for Mar Vista Entertainment and Double Wedding for Jaffe Braunstein. She has written movies for NBC, ABC, MTV, Lifetime and Hallmark, was a staff writer on the television series, RELATED, wrote a pilot for ABC Family and developed an animated feature for Disney. She co-created the critically acclaimed web series Faux Baby with Laura Brennan and Rachel Leventhal.
The screenplay adaptation of her play THE LAST SEDER won Showtime’s Tony Cox Screenwriting Award, meriting her a month’s stay in a haunted farmhouse at the Nantucket Screenwriter’s Colony; it’s currently in development with Rosalind Productions.
Her feature, Let the World Spin Forward, is with Chernin Entertainment and she has developed original pilots with Lucky Monkey Productions, Bunim-Murray, Ineffable, Stun Media and MomentumTV; she is currently developing a new television series and writing a feature for Motion Picture Corporation of America.
“This is what theater is for. It makes you laugh. It makes you cry. It makes you think. It makes you feel. It is a shared experience, with the entire audience coming together emotionally even though they sit in the dark without making eye contact with each other. It is the play, and the performances, that creates that emotional connection and that is the magic of live theater.”