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Palm Beach Dramaworks' new Dramaworkshop
During the ribbon cutting ceremony (from left) Producing Artistic Director William Hayes, Managing Director Sue Ellen Beryl, West Palm Beach Mayor Jeri Muoio, Diane Perlberg, and Mark Perlberg.

The ribbon cutting ceremony for Palm Beach Dramaworks new Dramaworkshop took place on Tuesday, April 5. Talking part were Producing Artistic Director William Hayes, Managing Director Sue Ellen Beryl, West Palm Beach Mayor Jeri Muoio, Diane Perlberg, and Mark Perlberg

“It was quite an exciting day,” Mark Perlberg said. “This is something we had been planning for quite a while and are happy to see it finally unveiled.”

Perlberg serves as Chairman of the Board for Dramaworks and is the co-creator and Executive Producer of the Master Playwright Series. He has delivered programs on Ibsen, Chekhov, Coward, Strindberg and Williams, among others. His directing credits include A Doll’s House and That Championship Season for the Upstate Repertory Summer Theatre. He is President and CEO of Oasis Outsourcing, one of the nation’s leading Professional Employer Organizations, headquartered in West Palm Beach. Oasis has nearly 600 internal employees and serves more than 4,000 clients and 100,000 worksite employees throughout the country.

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The studio theatre is the home of The Dramaworkshop, PBD’s lab for developing new plays. Jennifer Fawcett’s Buried Cities, the lab’s first developmental production, opened on Friday, April 8.

At the ribbon cutting Producing Artistic Director William Hayes addressed a gathering inside the Diane & Mark Perlberg Studio Theatre, as did West Palm Beach Mayor Jeri Muoio. The Mayor talked about the impact PBDramaworks has had on the city, and how it has made downtown a destination for theatre lovers.

West Palm Beach Mayor Jeri Muoio
West Palm Beach Mayor Jeri Muoio spoke onstage at the Diane & Mark Perlberg Studio Theatre, home to The Dramaworkshop, Palm Beach Dramaworks’ lab for developing new plays.

“Back in 2011 we had the concept for this, “ Perlberg continues. “to have a special separate workshop space for playwrights to try out new plays. My wife and I donated money for this to happen, and we think it is a terrific space, set up like a stage upstairs from the main theatre. It’s a real theatre but has enormous flexibility. It has 37 seats with full professional sound and lighting and seats on risers. Unlike the main theatre though it can be reconfigured for different productions such as making a theatre in the round or putting the audience on 3 sides around the stage. It’s a really nice theatre, it has an intimate feel that takes the workshop space to a whole other level since the actors will be right there in front of the audience. There is so much talent in South Florida but so few opportunities for them to try out new material. So for new playwrights to have a space like this to try out and develop their new work is just great, there is nothing like it around here.”

In 2007, Mr. Perlberg received the South Florida Business Journal “Ultimate CEO” Award for Palm Beach County. Mr. Perlberg is a magna cum laude graduate, of both the University of Rochester, where he was elected to Phi Beta Kappa, and Boston College Law School. In 2007, Mr. Perlberg received the South Florida Business Journal “Ultimate CEO” Award for Palm Beach County.

Perlberg has been enthusiastic about the company’s growth over the years and looks forward to its continued strength as a vital part of the cultural landscape of the Palm Beaches.

“Mark Perlberg has an impressive background in corporate management and as an arts advocate.   He is a man of great integrity, and has demonstrated great leadership ability.   We are deeply honored that he shall serve as Chairman during this crucial point in the evolution of our growing organization,” stated William Hayes, Producing Artistic Director.

Producing Artistic Director William Hayes
Producing Artistic Director William Hayes addressed a gathering inside the Diane & Mark Perlberg Studio Theatre

“It is both a challenge and a privilege to nurture playwrights and help them cultivate their work. That is what we do at The Dramaworkshop, our lab for developing new plays. Launched in Fall 2014, The Dramaworkshop receives play submissions from playwrights both local and nationwide over a period of three months each season. Of these, a select number are chosen by our company of Resident Artists to move on to various phases of development.”

Staged readings, workshops, and developmental productions will be held in the new space. Select audiences will have a chance to offer their feedback and add to the growth of the play. Tickets are extremely limited. All performances are $25. For more information before you visit, go to: www.palmbeachdramaworks.org

Palm Beach Dramaworks’ new Dramaworkshop Opens Curtain on Diane & Mark Perlberg Studio Theatre in West Palm Beach as a New Lab for Developing New Plays.

Sandra-Schulman Sandra Schulman is an arts writer, music and film producer. Born in Miami, her work has appeared in Billboard, Variety, Rolling Stone, Ocean Drive, Country Music Magazine, The New York Daily News, News From Indian Country, and Entertainment Weekly. She was an entertainment columnist for the South Florida Sun-Sentinel for 8 years. She has authored three books on pop culture. She currently lives in West Palm Beach with her blue eyed whippet. Sandra Schulman’s column appears weekly. Contact her at sandraslink@gmail.com.