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Rita Nachtmann

Rita Nachtmann

Playwright Rita Nachtmann died in Mesa, Arizona, Oct. 26, 2003, after a long struggle with cancer. Rita’s first public acclaim as a playwright was Mama Drama (Samuel French, Inc.), which she co-authored and which premiered at Cleveland Playhouse in 1990. Her play How I Spent My Life’s Vacation, published by Dramatic Publishing, was developed at the New Harmony Project in 1993 and won the 1997 PEN USA West Literary Award. (This play grew out of Rita’s initial bout with cancer.) Rita was also a recipient of the Berrilla Kerr Award in 1996 and a 1998 fellow at the Hawthornden International Retreat for Writers in Lasswade, Scotland. At the time of her death, she was working with Ensemble Studio Theatre in New York City under a grant from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation on her play about Roslyn Franklin, Thread of Life. Rita worked with Spokane Civic Theatre, a community theatre in Spokane, Washington, for many years. The Civic produced three plays that she wrote—How I Spent My Life’s Vacation, Pee Wee and the Wheelman, and The Hunger Shorts, along with Mama Drama.


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Samuel French Titles by Rita Nachtmann