Playwright Sponsorship 2019

Sensitive to Bite

by Eljon Wardally

directed by May Adra


Set in a bodega on the Lower East Side of NY, a budding feminist and her conservative husband struggle to sacrifice remnants of their past in Syria for the sake of their uncertain future in the US.


7:30 PM
The Jeffrey and Paula Gural Theatre at the A.R.T./New York Theatres
502 West 53rd Street
New York, NY 10019

Presented in collaboration with Project Y’s Women in Theater Festival

Meet the Team

ELJON WARDALLY (playwright) is a Playwright and Screenwriter born in New York with Grenadian roots. Plays include: Blooming In Dry Season (O’Neill National Playwrights Conference Finalist), By A Thread (Sundance MENA Theatre Lab Semi-Finalist), Big Black Balloon (O’Neill National Playwrights Conference Finalist), Bishop (O’Neill National Playwrights Conference Semi-Finalist, Kennedy Center Finalist) The Gift (The Network One Act Festival Semi-Finalist), Home Sweet Home (The Strawberry Festival Semi Finalist), Docket 32357 (New Works By Young Women Finalist). Eljon received her MFA in Playwriting from Fordham University.

MAY ADRA (director) is an actor, director, applied theatre practitioner, and teaching/community artist. She just graduated with her Applied Theatre Masters from CUNY SPS as a Fulbright Scholar from Lebanon. Her latest thesis capstone project with her thesis partner, MorganJade Booker, used storytelling and theatre as a tool towards agency, discussing societal issues, healing, and creating art that challenges ‘misery porn’. They worked a multidisciplinary arts effort alongside a government based organization and arts initiative that teaches the craft of needlework, jewelry making, and other artistic forms of visual creation as part of an existing vocational training and financial independence program with women, women of color, and immigrants who have been through forms of abuse, ending with a culminating showcase. May also collaborated as a devisor, actor, and co-director on a piece with Morgan titled, Anywhere But Here, about young women of color who have gone missing. As a Middle Eastern Arab and immigrant woman in the U.S. co-directing with Morgan, who identifies as an African American woman, the performance highlights interesting lenses, intersections and differences with regards to their identities around themes of womanhood, diaspora, the body, borders, and home. This was performed at the Kraine Theatre in March 2019. May is also a teaching artist assistant with Ping Chong + Company at their ‘Secret Histories’ storytelling residency program. She worked with 6th graders around identity, belonging, and community, towards a culminating performance. May acted in artistic and social productions, as well as supported community-based theatre projects in Lebanon before moving to the US in 2017.



(Grace) is an actor/playwright/co-founder of The Sống Collective, which aims to amplify the voices of those from the Vietnamese diaspora and provide creative spaces for artists of color to create powerful stories that redefine what it means to be American. She is bilingual, raised in North Carolina by two Vietnamese refugees who met as freedom fighters. As an actor, she has worked with New Dramatists, Primary Stages, Yangtze Rep, 2G, Pipeline, Boomerang, New Collectives, The Flea, The Tank and has helped workshop and develop numerous new plays in NYC. She is drawn to strong female characters who are fighting for survival, and yet are able to laugh at their current situations. Film: Children of the DustCatfight, and Queens. She is currently working on a cycle of plays about generational trauma in a Vietnamese family and a rap mixtape of Shakespeare monologues as diss tracks. BFA: Brooklyn College.



(Busshead) is a New York based worked on various plays all over the city. He’s very excited to make his debut at Crashbox theater and work with these lovely artists.



(Yousef) is a New York-based actor, writer and voice talent, originally from Cairo, Egypt. Off-Broadway: Angels Among Us (Durmond) at the American Theater of Actors. International (Egypt): GaspingGuys and DollsMr. Black TesticlesRosencrantz & Guildenstern Are Dead. TV/Film credits include: Tales of the City (Netflix), Lahazat Harega (Dubai TV), SnatchersThe Funeral. Training: The American University in Cairo (Egypt); The William Esper Studio, Upright Citizens Brigade (NY). He is thrilled to be a part of telling this story. Learn more at


(Matthew) is a Syrian-American Actor, Director, Musician and Teaching-Artist. He has worked internationally in the African tour of Antigone in the World, and regionally in the American Premiere of Terror (Miami New Drama) both directed by Tony award winner, Gregory Mosher. Off-Broadway: Fucking A (Signature Theatre), OthelloA Midsummer Night’s Dream (CSC) A Blanket of Dust (The Flea). Film/TV: “New Amsterdam” and “The Blacklist” (NBC), “The Week Of” (Netflix). Peter is the writer and director of the web series “The New Neighborhood.” BFA NYU: Tisch, MFA Columbia University.