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Riley Elton McCarthy (they/them)

is an internationally produced and published playwright, director, and performer. They were a featured artist and resident playwright with International World Pride 2021 in Copenhagen, Denmark, and were a resident playwright with Art House Productions, Common Ground Theatre Company, Playdate at Pete’s, and Elephant Room Productions. They have been produced at 59E59, The Tank, The Brick, Yale Repertory Theatre, The Triad Theater, and internationally in Denmark and Scotland. Sharon and Melina is currently a semi-finalist for the 2023 Eugene O’Neill National Playwriting Conference, and Take Me Down to the Levee is a 2023 SheNYCArts Semifinalist. Their hit horror play Ivories will be touring across New England and internationally in 2023. The Lesbian Play at The Triad Theater in June 2023 will be their playwriting Off-Broadway debut. Their plays Ragweeds and Sharon and Melina were nominated for 2022 BroadwayWorld Off-Broadway awards for Best New Play. Their short play The Death of a Supernova has been performed by colleges and performing arts companies all over the world. Most importantly, they are a proud dog parent to their tiny rescue dog, Hash Brown, and cat parent to Beans and Freddie Mercury. 

Riley is pursuing their MFA in Playwriting at Rutgers University, with an anticipated graduation of Fall 2025.

Riley is the founder and artistic director of the critically acclaimed playwright-centered production company, BASEMENT LIGHT PRODUCTIONS. With executive director Gustavo Blaauw, they have produced over twenty new plays in the past two years off broadway and around the world. Riley and LeRoi Richardson are the co-directors and curators of the Basement Light's new works program LIGHTBULB INCUBATOR, where they foster the growth of marginalized emerging playwrights on brand new works for the stage.

portrait by Ian McQueen.

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