Meet Vinecia Coleman author of Two Minutes After Dawn (Cupcake Fall Readings 2018)

Where did the idea for your play come from?

My grandmother suffered from dementia and one day we found her talking to someone who wasn’t there. As we listened, we realized she was talking to her own mother, who had been dead for over 20 years. I became fascinated with how dementia affects a person—the fear, anger, and confusion they must feel. And how does this disease affect the rest of the family/caretakers? I wanted to explore the destructive rollercoaster that is dementia.

What was your favorite moment in working on this piece?

My favorite moment is when the mother and daughter attempt to have a heart to heart and truly see the other for what they are and who they tried to be.

What projects are you currently working on?

I’m currently working on a script called Blood, Sweat, and Tears. It’s a musical about a woman who’s having a hard time and is forced to go back in time to visit/embody mythical figures of the past in hopes of finding her footing in the present.

Finish this sentence: “I love theater that…” makes me lean forward. Theatre that excites my imagination. Theatre that challenges my perceptions of what theatre “should be.”

What was the best advise you were given as a theater artist?

The best advice I ever got was from a professor Rob Caisley. He told me to think bigger. Write as if there were no constraints, as if you had plenty of resources. It changed my thinking—not just how I write but what I write about. I realized I had been limiting myself to only what I thought was possible, instead of reaching for the impossible. It made me a better writer.

What is the one thing you know as an artist now that you wish you could tell your younger self?

Write what is close to your heart. Not what you think other people want you to write.

Outside of theater, what are you really into right now?

I really love to cook. I like the calm that it brings and the blitheness of the smells.

 What is your favorite and least favorite word?

Favorite: anachronism—not because of what it means but because of the way it sort of rolls out of your mouth; Lease favorite: diet—for obvious reasons.


Writing: The Red Pen (University of Idaho/Chicago Dramatists and Region VII KCACTF readings); As You Like It (adaptation), Lucy, Stationary/Stationery (University of Idaho); But What Am I? (University of Idaho production and Region VII KCACTF reading); Home (Minnesota Fringe Festival, Region V KCACTF, Iowa State University, and University of Alaska Fairbanks); Ready, Set, Go! (University of Idaho and The Hypothetical Players); Hypothetically Speaking, The Silent City Wish (The Hypothetical Players). Awards: Oregon Shakespeare Festival’s Rex Rabold Fellowship (2017); Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival Region VII: National Partners of American Theatre nomination, The Red Pen and John Cauble Short Play award semi-finalist, But What Am I? (2016); Irene Ryan Acting Scholarship nomination, A Christmas Carol and Directing Certificate of Merit, Motherhood (2015); Certificates of Merit, Lucy and Ready, Set, Go! (2014). Region V: Invited Production, Home (The Place Where My Stuff Resides) and John Cauble Short Play award national semi-finalist, Home (2013). Education: MFA, Dramatic Writing and Directing, University of Idaho; BS, Microbiology, Iowa State University of Science and Technology.