Performing Arts


date icon05/23/2024
time icon7 PM
price iconFREE
location icon36 Church Street, Middletown NJ 07748

We’re thrilled to announce the finalists this year’s The MAC One-Acts Annual Play-Reading Festival, featuring original, one-act works by New Jersey playwrights.

Jessica Freeland, You Left Me Behind
Alexis Kozak, Ponce de Leon and the Old Dog
Ryan Fleming, Resqueue
Anna Y. Blaine, Come Play With Me, Ellie
Vita Patrick Morales, In Passing
David Weil Baker, Channeling Shakespeare

This is the fifth edition of the highly successful festival which began as a virtual event in 2020. The festival will be held in the MAC’s spacious theater on Thur, May 23 at 7 p.m. and will feature readings of each selected play by local actors. The festival is free and open to the public and donations are appreciated. 


JESSICA FREELAND is a writer, actor and musician. Her storytelling mostly focuses on feminism, conservation and mental wellness via dark and abstract settings that can be explored both literally and figuratively. She graduated magna cum laude from Montclair State University having earned a Triple Bachelor of Arts in English, Latin and Classics. Her debut piece, The Lovely Lucille, was an official selection of Holmdel Theatre Company’s Evening of New Works. Jessica is currently working on her first full-length play, I Am, a period drama about her great-grandmother’s life, from being a teenage immigrant on her own during the Progressive Era to a matriarch living through the Great Depression, wars and rock and roll. As always, she thanks her family for their endless love and support. “Per aspera ad astra!”

ALEXIS KOZAK teaches theatre arts at Middletown High School South. The play he wrote for last year’s fall production, Then One Foggy Christmas Eve, has just been published by Eldridge Publishing. He had a men’s monologue, a women’s monologue, and a ten-minute play featured in Smith & Kraus’ “The Best of 2023” series. His play, Lillian Whistles Back, will be featured in Jersey Voices at Chatham Playhouse in August.  He loves soccer, basketball, reading and his family. He lives in Wayside.

RYAN FLEMING‘s plays include Three Ring Circus and Snail Dinner. He has appeared in such plays as Barefoot in the Park, The Importance of Being Earnest, Hamlet and A Midsummer Night’s Dream. Ryan has recently returned to the New Jersey theatre community after moving to Kansas City for five years.

ANNA Y. BLAINE is a writer and actress from Long Branch, New Jersey. She has always had a passion for writing and storytelling. While getting her Bachelors of Arts in English at Monmouth University in West Long Branch, NJ, she was cast in a musical production of Sweeney Todd. After college, she was a part of an Algonquin Theater production of Guys and Dolls in Manasquan, NJ. Since then, she has studied at the prestigious HB studio and Roger Hendricks Simon studio in New York City. In 2021, Anna was cast in an Upstart Arts live streamed play production of Squirrel Girl Goes to College. She was also cast in the Upstarts Arts live streamed play production of Pygmalion in 2024. Anna is also an author in addition to being a playwright and screenwriter. She currently resides in Ocean, NJ.

VITA PATRICK MORALES has a BA in Italian from Rutgers University, an MA in Theater and Film from Hunter College and an MS in education from Fordham University. She is the author of over 20 short and full-length plays, including Francis of Assisi, The Diagonal Trilogy; Esmeralda and the Pacific Vortex, The Havana Orthodoxy, Vitiligo, Loretta the Yodeling Cowgirl and The Golden Thunderbolts. She is a member of the Dramatist Guild, ICWP and Honor Roll!.

DAVID BAKER teaches Shakespeare in the English department at Rutgers University. He has written articles about Shakespeare, but this is his first play about him. He is also an actor, having played Theseus in Midsummer Night’s Dream and Juror Number 8 in Twelve Angry Jurors, among others. He is a founding member of ‘Whatever, Dad,” an improv group that has performed in New Jersey and New York.