“Smile” by Kianni Keys ’19 was one of two plays by Newark Academy students to win the 34th NJ Playwrights Festival annual high school contest. The other winner, “Trust No One,” by Gabrielle Poisson ’17 will appear on WAM later this fall. Both plays were staged by professional actors during the Playwrights Festival at the Mayo Performing Arts Center in Morristown on the 26th of June. In preparation for the performance, Kianni and Gabi worked closely with professional dramaturges, directors and actors from Writers Theatre of NJ. As a result of this accomplishment, Kianni and Gabi received Governor’s Awards in Arts Education at an award ceremony at the War Memorial Theatre in Trenton on May 24th and earned membership in the Dramatists Guild of America. Gabi previously won this contest in 2015 for her play “Worn Thin.” Enjoy this compelling work by Kianni Keys.
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