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What happens when playwrights consider the audience a core part of crafting their stories? What new opportunities and challenges arise when opening your imagination in this way? Drew Paryzer is excited to address these questions with students through exercises to explore different techniques when designing a play wrapped around an audience and altered based on their participation.

This class is for you if you:

  • Are interested in creating an immersive experience for audiences.
  • Want to experiment with interactive technology and/or techniques in your plays.
  • Need to find a new way to shape your stories and expand your imagination.
  • Are interested in learning more about Drew Paryzer’s work and approach to writing.

What to expect:

  • Presenting a final project to the class.
  • Required readings and videos to discuss in class and on Google Classroom.
  • Creating, sharing, and discussing your work and the work of your peers.
  • Connecting and engaging with students and the instructor online via Zoom and Google Classroom.


Class Modality: Hybrid Asynchronous – Alternates between online meetings and online lessons/assignments on your own via Google Classroom.

Class Dates:
Every other Thursday, March 28 through May 16

  • 5 total “in-person” sessions: March 28th, April 11th, April 25th, May 9th, May 16th
  • 3 total Google Classroom lessons: April 4th, April 18th, May 2nd
From Drew

A shared presence between audience and performer is integral to making theater what it is. Immersive/interactive further draws on this relationship by giving audiences greater freedom or agency within that relationship. Immersive/interactive as an entertainment field is drawing a ton of interest right now, and one I believe playwrights can speak to this form in a unique way. I also believe that whatever the American theater transforms into over the next few decades, immersive/interactive work should (will?) be a big part of it. Let’s get a head start!

Drew Paryzer

The playwright he/his
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based inDecatur, GA
Drew Paryzer (puh-RYE-zurr) is a playwright and interactive storyteller. His work has been developed or presented at the Roundabout Theatre, The Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, Fusebox Festival, Tofte Lake Center, The Museum of Human Achievement, and the Playwrights' Center. His plays include Loverboy (UT New Theater 2018), Al-Halqa (is that how it’s pronounced) (New Harmony Project finalist), Swallow the Reader, and Alter (Kennedy Center MFA Playwrights’ Workshop). His work as an interactive storyteller includes FinalCon (Austin Critics Table Award nomination), Superfluxus with Seth Bockley (Pivot Arts Festival 2020), the virtual reality/theater piece A Very Narrow Bridge (Tofte Lake Center Residency), the climate-change-inspired escape room Resilience Sentry (UT Austin), and Intro to Being Here (Cohen New Works Festival 2017). Drew holds a BA from Sarah Lawrence College, where he received the Lipkin Prize, and an MFA in Playwriting from The University of Texas at Austin, where he was a James A. Michener Fellow. He is a National New Play Network Affiliated Artist, as well as an Affiliated Writer with the Playwrights’ Center. Drew served as a Narrative Lead at Meow Wolf from 2018-20, and was most recently an Immersive Storytelling Resident at the University of North Carolina School of the Arts' Media + Emerging Technology Lab.