Queen of the Goths is inspired by Shakespeare’s infamous and bloody Titus Andronicus. It explores this classic play through the villainized lens of Tamora, Queen of the Goths, who was captured by Titus, and refocuses the story on both the female characters and Titus' own PTSD. It’s set in the lawless Victorian Era of the Florida Everglades where corruption, power struggles, and land wars are rampant.
Perfect for fans of the original Titus Andronicus as well as films like Tarantino’s Inglourious Basterds and books like Morrison’s Beloved.
I recently received a commission from the L’Engle Estate/Stage Partners to write the first stage adaptation of Madeline L’Engle’s classic A Wind in the Door. It will be developed at The Kennedy Center in Washington DC.
I Love Donna Best
I Love Donna Best is a riff on ‘50s sitcoms, motherhood, and mocktails. This new comedy uses classic sitcom tropes to investigate how far we have come since the 1950s, and how far we have left to go.
A Florida Studio Theatre Commission and part of their 2020-21 Suffragist Project to celebrate the centennial of the passing of the 19th Amendment. You can see Donna in their August 2020 festival. Details to come!
(Pictures by Sarah Haley, Florida Studio Theatre, 2019)
A new comedy
Babel will have a National New Play Network rolling world premiere from January 2020-January 2021. If you are interested in joining the roll, contact Jordana at NNPN. If you are interested in Babel in 2021 or beyond, contact my agent Susan Gurman.
2019 Kilroy’s List
2018 Generations Award
2017 Smith Prize for Political Theater
2017 Independence Foundation Fellowship in the Arts
What would you do if you had the power to build your own baby? And your best friend is a talking Stork? In this version of a near future society, prospective parents learn within the first weeks of conception which genetic traits their child will have, and what behaviors they are likely to exhibit. In this new comedy, two couples collide over what to do with their PRE certification test results. With rapid advances in reproductive technology, modern eugenics is science’s Wild West. How far will we go when playing God? If you like Booker’s “Black Mirror,” Ishiguro’s “Never Let Me Go,” or Haley’s “The Nether,” then this play is for you.
Special Thanks to Catherine Randazzo, Gayle Smith, Florida Studio Theatre, the Smith Prize, the Mitten Lab, the Independence Foundation, and the National New Play Network
(Picture from the reading at the Independence Foundation Fellowship in the Arts Celebration and poster from the Unicorn Theatre production in January 2020)
The Little Mermaid (adaptation)
5+ Characters (3-4 F, 1-2 M, Or more flexible gender and non-binary)
A new adaptation of a family classic.
I’m finalizing a new adaptation of THE LITTLE MERMAID, commissioned by the Arden Theatre Company. Our LITTLE MERMAID is a Classic Fable of Love, Music, and Adventure from the timeless tale by Hans Christian Anderson with music composed for the sea by Mendelssohn, Debussy, Marsick, and Ravel. It highlights body positivity and the power of love.
(Pictured: Rehearsal for reading of first draft at Arden Theatre, 2019)
3 F, 2 M (Flexible casting 5-12+)
Currently nominated for the 2020 Blackburn Prize.
A Feminist Sci-Fi Epic.
This fast, bright, darkly humorous play follows a group of college students involved in a frat rape that goes viral. As we spin forward in time over a decade, the characters create virtual reality identities that blur time and space; designing new technologies to erase a past that's impossible to forget, and grappling with the consequences of real life that can't be shifted, no matter how fast you code.
It's a uniquely theatrical Sherlock-ian thriller that explores questions of consent, technology and identity. If you like “Us” or “Get Out,” then this play is for you.
The Playwright would like to offer special thanks to:
JT Rogers, Marissa Wolf, Lisa Dillman, Rudy Ramirez, Katherine M. Carter, Melisa Bensussen, Carrie Chapter, Emerson Stage/ArtsEmerson, Cristina Alicea, The Drama League (NYC), Westport Playhouse, Chris Ghaffari, Christina Pumariega, Barron Bass, Kita Updike, Kim Taff, Sara Marnich, Viv Chace, Nell Bang-Jensen, Jeremy Gable, MJ Kaufman, Maybe Burke, Finn Lefevre, Ashley Rogers, Jessica Bashline, David LaMacchia, The Producer’s Fund, Allison Heishman, WOAR (Women Organized Against Rape), Rebecca Wright, The Vortex Theater, and the University of the Arts Faculty Development Fund.
(Photography by Daniel Kontz, Simpatico Theatre Production)
4 F, 1 M
A Southern Gothic family tale in the vein of Faulkner, McCullers, and Hurston.
2018 The Mix List, Steppenwolf Theatre
2018 Intersectional New Plays List, New Play Exchange
2018 Finalist at the International Book Awards
2017 Yale Drama Prize
“Jacqueline Goldfinger is that rarity in American theatre--a poet-playwright. Bottle Fly is a gorgeous play, roaring with the sacred and the profane and--for all its passion--delicately conveyed.”—Dan O’Brien, playwright, The Body of an American and The House in Scarsdale, Guggenheim Fellow in Drama & Performance Art (USA)
Bottle Fly is set in a bar in the Florida Everglades. This biting, brutally funny multigenerational family drama concerns a Gulf Coast couple, their disabled young ward, two lesbian tenants, and the bonds that bind them all together. It is a powerful story born out of the playwright’s own experiences with the rapidly changing social environment of rural Florida, where long-standing traditions and beliefs can collide, sometimes dangerously, with new ideas of personhood, identity, and self-realization.
"Bottle Fly is an ambitious work….[It] illuminates love in many guises: love for those who have mattered to one in the past, love that was born as pity, love tinged with guilt, love for those who need your protection and love for someone who, without even knowing that she was doing it, holds out the promise of a more beautiful life."—Nicholas Wright, playwright, Vincent in Brixton and The Reporter (UK)
(Pictured: Cover of Yale Press commercial edition)
1 F, 1 M
A Southern Gothic tale of love, revenge, and redemption.
A father-daughter arson team burns their relationship to the ground, and then rise from the ashes. A lyrical, heartbreaking, and darkly funny play with music about the eternal bond between parent and child.
Short excerpt of Archival Recording (NOT for sale or general use): The Arsonists
(Picture of Perseverance Theatre production)
Skin & Bone
3 F, 1 M
A Southern Gothic tale of forbidden love.
In Skin & Bone, Goldfinger returns to her roots as a Southern Gothic storyteller to spin a darkly comic tale about a set of twin cannibal grannies, Midge and Madge, and the (deceased) love of their life. Skin & Bone explores the absurd adherence to the time honored traditions that destroy you.
Short excerpt of Archival Recording (NOT for sale or general use): Skin & Bone
(Picture from production at Azuka Theater)
3 F, 4 M
A Southern Gothic tale of racial inequity and the price families pay.
Barrymore Award for Outstanding New Play
Brown Martin Award for Social Justice Theatre
When racial tensions come to a boiling point in a Florida town, the smallest actions can have paralyzing consequences; Slip/Shot is a heartbreaking drama about fear, unconscious bias, and our need to move forward.
Short excerpt of Archival Recording (NOT for sale or general use): Slip/Shot
(Pictures from Flashpoint Theater Company and Seattle Public Theater productions)
5 F, 1 M
A Southern Gothic tale of redemption, spiritual and otherwise.
A wandering preacher is embroiled in the passions and politics of a swampy Florida outpost ruled with a macabre sense of justice by two rival sisters during the Great Depression. The Oath is a darkly comic look at balancing ambition and ideals in a time of crisis.
(Pictures from productions at Manhattan Theatre Works and Acadiana Rep)
The Terrible Girls
3 F, 1 M
A Southern Gothic Horror-Comedy.
Where did Mr. Witherose go? How do you properly dispose of a skull in the pantry? And who wants to go to the Happiest Place on Earth anyways? The Terrible Girls is a Southern Gothic horror-comedy that explores the duality of human nature and the murky line between friendship and obsession.