E.M. Lewis is an award-winning playwright, teacher, and librettist. She is a former ANPF winning playwright (Song of Extinction, ANPF 2008) as well as having served as ANPF host playwright for eight seasons.
Her work has been produced around the world and published by Samuel French. She received the Steinberg/ATCA Award for How the Light Gets In, the Edgerton Award for Magellanica, the Steinberg Award for Song of Extinction, and the Primus Prize for Heads from the American Theater Critics Association, as well as the Ted Schmitt Award from the Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle for outstanding writing of a world premiere play, an L.A. Weekly Award for Production of the Year, a Hodder Fellowship from Princeton University, a playwriting fellowship from the New Jersey State Arts Commission, and the 2016 Oregon Literary Fellowship in Drama. Her play Now Comes the Night was part of the Women’s Voices Theater Festival in Washington DC, and was published in the anthology Best Plays from Theater Festivals 2016.
Her play The Gun Show was ANPF’s first fully-staged production, which was presented summer 2019. The Gun Show premiered in Chicago in 2014 and has since been produced in more than a dozen theaters across the country, including Coho in Portland, and at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival in Scotland. It was published in The Best American Short Plays 2015-2016.
Other plays by Lewis include: How the Light Gets In; Magellanica; Infinite Black Suitcase; Goodbye, Ruby Tuesday; Reading to Vegetables; True Story; Apple Season; and You Can See All the Stars (a play for college students commissioned by the Kennedy Center).
In 2019, it was announced that Lewis was commissioned by the Oregon Shakespeare Festival to be part of their American Revolutions series, and her play How the Light Gets had its world premiere at Boston Court Pasadena. In 2018, Lewis’ epic Antarctica play, Magellanica, had its world premiere at Artists Repertory Theatre in Portland. Also in 2018, Lewis spent five weeks in residence at Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville, teaching playwriting and working with students on the workshop production of a big, new political play set in her home state of Oregon called The Great Divide. In addition, Lewis premiered Town Hall, a new opera written with composer Theo Popov, at the University of Maryland Opera Studio, and premiered a full-length, family-friendly opera, written with composer Evan Meier, commissioned by American Lyric Theater, called Sherlock Holmes and the Case of the Fallen Giant. Lewis is a proud member of LineStorm Playwrights, ASCAP, and the Dramatists Guild.