Heller Launchpad

As Heller Theatre Company continues our third season as Tulsa’s home for new works, we are expanding our services to better serve the Tulsa community. Our new program, titled Heller Launchpad will provide resources to those in the Tulsa community who wish to self-produce a new work. 

There is currently no place in Tulsa to aid artists wanting to self-produce a new work. Heller Launchpad looks to change that by providing artists with helpful resources, including:

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  • connections to talented theatre technicians and actors

  • marketing and Public Relations assistance

  • use of our established brand as “Tulsa’s Home for New Works”

  • budgeting assistance

  • free and/or deeply discounted rehearsal space

Heller Launchpad will also allow for playwrights to discuss their scripts and receive advice from our Playwright-in-Residence Shadia Dahlal and Dramaturg Michael Wright. Additionally, in keeping with our view that actors deserve to get paid for their work, HTC will subsidize the payment of actors up to $300 (to be paid back if the production turns a profit).

To qualify, scripts must meet the following criteria:

  • Playwrights must be based in Oklahoma or have lived in Oklahoma within the last 10 years. (Note: preference will be given to those in the greater Tulsa area.)

  • Must be unpublished, and must not have received a fully-staged production in Oklahoma

  • Must pay all actors in the production no less than $10 per actor per performance. (Paying actors for their invaluable services is important to HTC, so we will subsidize the payment of actors, up to $300; if the production makes a profit, this will be paid back to HTC from the profit.)

  • The initial draft of the script must be complete by the time of application.

Applications for the Heller Launchpad for the 2020-2021 Season will be accepted from January 1, 2020 through March 31, 2020 through the link below. For more information, email us at hellertheatre@gmail.com. One production will be selected for performance through Heller Launchpad.

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The Nostalgia Will Eat Itself

We will kick off this new venture when the first ever Heller Launchpad production, The Nostalgia Will Eat Itself by John Fisher, goes up January 17, 18, 24, 25, 31, and Feb. 1 at 8PM at Nightingale Theater. This production is being self-produced by Nick Lutke, Thomas Hunt, and Luke Thompson under their “Write That Down Productions” label, with assistance from Heller Theatre Company and Midwestern Theater Troupe. Nostalgia will star Thomas Hunt, Kara Bellavia, John Cruncleton III, and Ben Despain. Nick Lutke will direct, with Luke Thompson stage managing and co-directing the filmed portions.

The Nostalgia Will Eat Itself follows a Tinder date between a young man who rose to quasi-fame playing video games on YouTube and a young woman whose interest in gaming is tempered by the industry’s sexist attitudes. Both of them harbor secrets and, before the night ends, blood will spill. Tulsa native (and current Chicago resident) John Fisher blends traditional horror elements with the horrors of online dating and toxic masculinity in this reflection on nostalgia, misogyny, and fame in a post-GamerGate world.

Nick Lutke was drawn to this script for its creative use of technology and the way the script transcends genre, relying on the relationships between the characters to tell the story. They are excited to direct their first full-length production, after having directed several short plays and the one-act play “Speak with Dead” as part of 2018’s Triple Feature! (Heller Theatre Company).