Dirt Dogs Theatre Co.  Names Selections For  Second Annual Student Playwright Festival

One-Night-Only Performance: June 5, 2019

HOUSTON, TX — Plays by local high-school seniors, Sierra Butterwick, Lauren Dodds, and Amado Velasco have been chosen by Dirt Dogs Theatre Co. (DDTCo.) as selections for its second annual Student Playwright Festival. Each playwright is awarded a $500 scholarship and is paired with a Houston-based playwright as a mentor to fine-tune the plays and prepare them for production. The students will be guests of honor as their plays are performed at the MATCH – Midtown Arts & Theater Center Houston on June 5, 2019.


Sierra Butterwick, a senior at Heights High School, presents her play, The Vines. The play recaps a night four years before the apocalypse when the life of a young man begins to crumble. Butterwick will be mentored by author and playwright, Doug Williams, best known to Houston and DDTCo. audiences as co-author of The BoundaryThe Vines will by directed by Ananka Kohnitz, well-known in the Houston theatre community for presenting dark plays such as Bug and The Beauty Queen of Leenane.

Lauren Dodds, a senior at Stratford High School, debuts her play, The Unknown. Over several years of friendship, Michael tries to help Lucy overcome her desire to always “play it safe.” Dodds will be mentored by Gwen Flager, whose play Shakin’ the Blue Flamingo premiered last summer as part of Queensbury Theatre’s New Works Development Program. The Unknown is directed by Curtis Barber who recently directed Doublewide, Texas at The Pearl Theater.

Amado Velasco, a senior at Morton Ranch High School in Katy, debuts his play Staff Meeting from Hell. At the end of every month, the seven deadly sins meet to discuss their accomplishments. But can they handle being in the same room and assure humanities downfall? Velasco is mentored by Ted Swindley, creator of the worldwide hit musical Always…Patsy Cline, and the Founding Artistic Director of Stages Repertory Theatre. Staff Meeting from Hell is directed by Malinda L. Beckham, Artistic Director of DDTCo., whose directorial credits include Glengarry Glen Ross and The Exonerated.




Theatre/Performing Arts


Dirt Dogs Theatre Co. Student Playwright Festival


Staff Meeting from Hell  

written by Amado Velasco
Morton Ranch High School (77449)

directed by Malinda L. Beckham

mentored by Ted Swindley

The Unknown

written by Lauren Dodds
Stratford High School (77079)

directed by Curtis Barber

mentored by Gwen Flager

The Vines

written by Sierra Butterwick
Heights High School (77018)

directed by Ananka Kohnitz

mentored by Doug Williams


June 5, 2019
(reception following the performance)


Match Houston
Matchbox 3, The John P. McGovern Foundation Theater, 3400 Main Street, Houston, TX 77002


713-521-4533 | matchouston.org


Single tickets, $15


Dirt Dogs Theatre Co. creates multi-faceted theatrical productions that enrich and entertain audiences, inspire artists, and honor playwrights. It was established in 2015 by Houston theatre veterans, Trevor B. Cone, Malinda L. Beckham, and John Baker. Dirt Dogs collaborates with Houston artists and playwrights to provide an opportunity for new works to be seen, and previously produced ones to breathe new life. www.dirtdogstheatre.org.