R. Jim Stahl (Creator of Monocular Man) founded the classroom literary magazine Merlyn’s Pen. For sixteen years it published rising teen writers, poets, and playwrights for a classroom readership of nearly 100,000, earning Merlyn’s Pen coverage in Time magazine, the New York Times, Washington Post, and a feature in the Christian Science Monitor. Among today's leading novelists whose stories first appeared in Merlyn's Pen are Amity Gaige (Schroder, The Folded World, O My Darling), Curtis Sittenfeld (You Think It - I'll Say It, Eligible, Sisterland, American Wife, Prep), and Dara Horn (Eternal Life, A Guide for the Perplexed, All Other Nights, In the Image, The World to Come).
Stahl founded the New Library of Young Adult Writing, an online resource of 1000 teen-written stories, poems, and essays -- many of them illustrated and paired with lesson plans -- for secondary classrooms (www.merlynspen.org). He's edited eleven fiction collections that make up The American Teen Writer Series; they enjoy readership in nine countries and translation into Chinese. With more than 100,000 copies in print, books in The American Teen Writer Series were nominated to Best Books for Young Adults (ALA) and Books for the Teen Age (New York Public Library). Stahl created and produced the touring show Stories on Stage and -- while collaborating with Diane Postoian -- Some Lady on Youtube, a series of experimental PSA's on challenges facing teens in America. Stahl created the popular writing program Down to the Sea with Paper and Pen: each summer it takes teens out to sea for writing and adventure on a tall ship.
Stahl’s original stories, which he began writing at age 53, laid the groundwork for Monocular Man. He first performed his stories in story slams, unexpectedly winning Best Storyteller and Audience Favorite at the First Person Festival of Memoir and Documentary Art (Philadelphia, 2011). He represented New England storytellers in the National Story Slam (Chicago, 2011). He has since performed his monologues on WGBH, MassMouth and World Channel's Stories from the Stage (Television, 2018), at the National Storytelling Festival (2015), NYC's Strawberry One Act Play Festival (2015), the Providence Fringe (2014), the New York International Fringe Festival (2013) and Rhode Island's Trinity Rep Theatre (2013). His 2014 animated film, Monocular Man: My Eye & Saturn V, co-created with director Jack Feldstein, took runner-up in both the Jury and Audience Choice Awards at the Providence Children's Film Festival (2015) and the Online New England Film Festival (2015). Stahl lives, writes, and sails traditional boats on Narragansett Bay, in Rhode Island. He attended the Northfield Mt. Hermon School and, at Georgetown, majored in Philosophy before pursuing graduate training at Stanford and the University of Chicago. He holds an MAT (English) in Education. Since the 2016 election, he's been supporting the successful efforts of young climate leaders with Young Leader Grants through his company called STILL-LEGAL! at www.still-legal.com.
Kate Lohman (Director) is former Artistic Director of Rhode Island’s critically acclaimed Sandra-Feinstein Gamm Theatre. She is a founding member of NYC’s Studio B, for which she directed and performed as well as wrote. Her play HOW TO DO YOUR FACE was produced at both the West Bank and Sanford Meisner Theatres. At the Gamm Theatre she directed many productions including WHO’S AFRAID OF VIRGINIA WOOLF?, THE CHERRY ORCHARD, SKYLIGHT, SHOPPING AND F**KING, SOMEONE WHO’LL WATCH OVER ME, TRANSLATIONS, and QUILTERS. Ms. Lohman has performed extensively in regional theater and summer stock and been a company member at Pittsburgh Public Theater, Perishable Theater, and the Gamm. Roles include Lady Macbeth in MACBETH, Cleopatra in ANTONY AND CLEOPATRA, Goneril in KING LEAR, Ruth in THE HOMECOMING, April in THE HOT L BALTIMORE, Honor in TOM JONES, Jane in QUILTERS, Mere in UBU ROI, Crowsfoot in HARM’S WAY, Mrs. Carl Lammle in DARK RIDE, and Olga in THE THREE SISTERS. Kate has appeared in films including OUTSIDE PROVIDENCE, UNDERDOG, and SAY YOU’LL BE MINE, and she is a regular narrator for WGBH-Boston. She teaches courses in Oral Communication and Writing at Johnson & Wales University and Providence College and is currently writing a play titled JUST FOUR MOMS, and a memoir. Ms. Lohman lives in Providence, Rhode Island, with her husband and their awesome son, Jack.
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