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Play-By-Play titles announced for 2020

Pioneer Theatre Company

Play-by-Play readings are professionally produced readings, providing developmental rehearsal periods for three new plays each season. The playwright works alongside a professional director and cast for a week-long residency, culminating in three public readings of each play available to theatergoers at a very modest cost.

In The Anatomy of Love, playwright TED MALAWER explores the lives of Danny and Laura, a modern couple consisting of a working mother and stay-at-home father in the Play-by-Play season opener. Their comfortable existence comes to a dead, frightening stop when their seven-year-old daughter’s teacher, Ms. Spencer, suggests that their child is most likely transgender. What follows is a fierce and sometimes hostile battle with Danny and Ms. Spencer advocating acceptance and pre-emptive reassignment and Laura adamantly refusing either action. This highly relevant issue is the battleground for an emotional and heartbreaking story of fierce love and dreaded loss.

Returning to Pioneer Theatre Company is JEFF TALBOTT, whose previous reading of “i” in 2017 resulted in its world premiere at PTC in 2018. The second play in the season series is his play The Messenger. Set in Norway in 1882, main character Therese Stockman is a small-town doctor and single mother who has made a shocking discovery about the industry that gives her town its lifeblood. Her friend, news editor Kristine Hovstad, is going to take the story and run with it, but at what cost? Using Henrik Ibsen’s classic An Enemy of the People as a departure point, this brand-new play examines our relationships with the press, the community, each other, and where to draw the line when deciding the right move to make. 

“Embarking on the seventh season of this project, I feel pleased that we’ve nurtured the development of 21 plays, giving opportunities to 93 actors and directors, so far leading to seven world premieres, either at PTC or elsewhere,” said Artistic Director Karen Azenberg. “This is how tomorrow’s classics are created and we are thrilled to be such a critical part of the process of creating new work.” 

“PTC has a special place in the Salt Lake City community, offering something for everyone. The Play-By-Play series engages audiences with the forefront of theatrical development,” Chris Massimine, PTC’s managing director notes. “Our mission is not just bringing the best of theatre to Salt Lake City, but cultivating it here. I’m proud to be a part of that vision.”

The February reading will be held in Dumke Auditorium at the Utah Museum of Fine Arts (UMFA); the March and April readings will take place at the Babcock Theatre, in the lower level of Simmons Pioneer Memorial Theatre.

Play-by-Play readings are offered at an affordable price of $10 each, or $25 for all three. PTC Season Ticket Subscribers and pass holders can attend all three for $15 as a benefit of their subscription. All tickets are general admission. Individual tickets may be purchased through the PTC Box Office by calling 801-581-6961 or online at

Sponsors for Play-by-Play include Salt Lake County Zoo, Arts and Park Fund, The Bireley Endowment, Susan Stoddard Heiner and Blake T. Heiner, and Lee and Audrey Hollaar.

Play-By-Play New Play Reading Series

The Anatomy of Love by Ted Malawer, February 7 & 8, 2020The Messenger by Jeff Talbott, March 13 & 14, 2020Title TBA, April 17 & 18, 2020

Fridays at 7:30 p.m.Saturdays at 2:00 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.

The February reading, The Anatomy of Love, will be held in Dumke Auditorium at the Utah Museum of Fine Arts (UMFA).

The readings held in March (The Messenger) and April (TBA) will take place at the Babcock Theatre, in the lower level of Simmons Pioneer Memorial Theatre, 300 South 1400 East, Salt Lake City, UT 84112


  • $5 each for current PTC Season Ticket Holders
  • $10 each for general public, or all three for $25

MORE INFO:Box Office 801-581-6961Open 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m., Monday – Friday