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Pulitzer Prize Winning Playwright to Offer Peek at Work She Started in Sun Valley
Sunday, September 24, 2023


Pulitzer Prize winner and Tony Award nominee Martyna Majok will present a free play reading of a play she started writing while in Ketchum at the Ernest and Mary Hemingway House on Thursday, Sept. 28.

The work-in-progress, which will feature a mix of local actors and actors from New York City, will start at 7 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 28 at The Argyros in Ketchum. Though free, reservations are required at

Majok and Off-Broadway director Caitlyn Sullivan will also participate in a free hour-long Q&A with John Baker, the artistic director of the Sun Valley Playwright’s Residency, at 5:30 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 27, in the Argyros Bailey Theater. Again, reservations are required.

The non-profit Sun Valley Playwright’s Residency brought Majok to Ketchum for a month-long stay at the Hemingway House in October 2022. Sun Valley audience got to watch a play reading of her play “Ironbound” at that time.

Majok is the second Sun Valley Playwright’s Residency recipient. The residency pioneers a new approach to supporting playwrights and the development of new work by offering them a month-long getaway in a breathtaking setting to embark on a project. It follows that up with creative support over the course of a year.

“We’re working with playwrights at the very beginning of their creative process—when their next play is just an idea,” said SVPR Artistic Director John Baker. And we’re inviting audiences to be a part of that creative process by showing up and spending time with the writer and their work-in-process.”

“Combining resources with our wonderful partners at The Community Library and The Argyros—two cultural pillars in the Valley—allows us to offer visionary writers exceptional resources and to deepen the programming we offer the community,” added SVPR Producer Jonathan Kane.

Majok witnessed the debut of her Pulitzer Prize-winning play “Cost of Living” on Broadway right before coming to Ketchum last year where she read the opening monologue from that play at Ketchum’s Community Library.

The play follows Eddie, an unemployed truck driver and his estranged ex-wife who find themselves unexpectedly reunited after an accident leaves Ani paralyzed. The play explores the interactions between the abled and disabled as it challenges the typical perceptions of those living with disabilities and delves deep into the ways class, race, nationality and wealth can create gulfs between people, even as they long to connect.

Samuel Hunter, whose film adaptation of “The Whale” won an Oscar this year,” directed a free reading of Majok’s play “Ironbound” while Majok was here. The play follows a Polish immigrant cleaning lady who finds that love is a luxury and a liability as she fights to survive in America. Majok was inspired by her mother’s experience as a Polish immigrant to write the play.

“She’s always been a writer that interested me,” said Baker. “She has a very unique voice as a writer, an interesting and important point of view on the world. She also lives in same part of New York City I live in, and we wanted to reach out to artists we have relationships with already who can be very honest with us and won’t sugarcoat things when talking to us. When we offered to bring her to Idaho, to give her time and space to write a new work over the course of the year, she said, ‘This sounds amazing.’ ”

This week’s program is supported in part by a grant from the Idaho Humanities Council.


Rajiv Joseph, who wrote “Bengal Tiger at the Baghdad Zoo” about a tiger seeking the meaning of life, will move into the Ernest and Mary Hemingway House in October as the 2023-24 Resident Playwright. Joseph is a Pulitzer Prize finalist and two-time Obie Award winner.

He will engage in a conversation with The Community Library’s Programs Director Martha Williams at 5 p.m. Oct. 9. Reserve your seat at

And Sun Valley Playwright’s Residency will present a free reading of his 2009 play “Gruesome Playground Injuries” at 7 p.m. Oct. 14 at The Argyros Performing Arts Center. Reserve your seat at

The play follows childhood friends over a period of 30 years using scars, wounds and calamities as mile markers to explore why people hurt themselves.

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