New Play Reading Series: “fireflies” by Philana Omorotionmwan

Performing Arts - Theater | March 8 | 4-6 p.m. | Dwinelle Hall, Room 4B

 Department of Theater, Dance, and Performance Studies, Townsend Center for the Humanities

Fireflies (4F)
It’s twilight time.
And the small, winged things–
like spiders and roaches and fireflies–
have begun to stir and search for light.
Will Then-Self find hers before she dies?
Or will Now-Self find other ways to survive?

Fireflies is an exploration of one girl’s longing and search for intimacy through the lives of insects. Join us for a reading of a new work-in-progress by Philana Omorotionmwan, followed by a discussion with the playwright. Presented in partnership with the Townsend Center Contemporary Drama Working Group.

Philana Omorotionmwan is originally from Baton Rouge, Louisiana. The daughter of a Louisiana Creole mother and a Nigerian father, Philana began writing as a way to articulate her experience of growing up as the “other” in this place. She graduated from Stanford University where she majored in English, dabbled in spoken word, and began writing plays under the mentorship of Cherríe Moraga. Her play Before Evening Comes has been developed as part of the 2016 Bay Area Playwrights Festival and the 2016 Br!nk New Play Festival. Her ten-minute play “Dis Da Hood” is currently a finalist for the 2016 Heideman Award. Production of Philana’s short plays includes “The Settlement” (Ensemble Studio Theatre) and “Black Boys Don’t Dance” (Manhattan Theatre Source). From 2010-2011, Philana was a PlayGround SF company playwright. In 2011, she studied playwriting as the recipient of the Walker Scholarship from the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown, MA and a participant in the Kennedy Center’s Summer Playwriting Intensive. She has also studied poetry at Naropa University as a guest student in the Summer Writing Program, and her poems have appeared in New Delta Review and African American Review. Philana is a member of the Dramatists Guild of America, Inc. Visit her website at

The Contemporary Drama Working Group brings outstanding new and in-progress work by up-and-coming and established playwrights to the UC Berkeley campus. In the monthly New Play Reading Series, new plays are read by TDPS students, followed by a discussion with the playwright., 510.642.1677