Connecting Alumni Artists
and Student Artists.
New Play Workshop. Master Classes.
Staged Readings.

What is MSPL?

MIDDSummer Play Lab is a weeklong artist residency and professional internship. It connects current students with experienced alumni to generate new creative work and to teach valuable career skills relating to the theatre and film industries.

Set in the summer season, students are offered the opportunity to flourish creatively in a non-academic setting. Playwrights and artists benefit from focused and uninterrupted time together to develop ideas, and a strong network is created between current students and alumni working in the field.

MSPL was founded in 2013 by Tara Giordano ’02, with Jesse Holland ‘02 and current Middlebury faculty member, Dana Yeaton, with support from Middlebury Center for Careers and Internships, the Middlebury Alumni Office, and Middlebury Arts. Associate artists include Joe Varca ‘02 and Ben Fainstein ’04.

“I don’t think I knew when I was 18 why I was choosing to go to a small college in Vermont, but the ability to do this kind of thing now is probably why.”

Emily Feldman ’09 

Developing and Supporting New Plays

Each summer, MSPL offers a returning Middlebury playwright a weeklong developmental workshop to support the creation of a new play. The playwright’s characters are given voice by professional actors drawn from the MSPL alumni company, and the workshop is fully supported with feedback sessions, dedicated writing hours, and rehearsals, culminating in a staged reading open to the entire Middlebury community.

Students take part in rehearsals and are exposed to the process of developing a new play with experienced professionals. They are introduced to new tools for generating ideas in a collaborative setting and are invited to participate in constructive group feedback.

This vital work between the playwright, alumni, and students helps shape, guide, and refine the play, giving new insights and directions for future productions.


MSPL 2013 Playwright, Emily Feldman | “The Pilot Project”

Master Classes

With significant credits on Broadway, Off-Broadway, and regionally, and starring roles in television and film, MSPL alumni artists are dedicated to sharing their skills and experience with current students. Through master classes and career conversations, they offer tools that prepare students for life in the arts after Middlebury.


Tara Giordano ’02 mentoring Mari Vial-Golden ’14 on her scene

Want to Know More?

Interested in taking part in the next MIDDSummer Play Lab? Reach out to us HERE.

Special Thanks

MSPL is very grateful for the generous support of:

Middlebury Education in Action and Peggy Burns 
Liz & Jim Robinson
Mike & Tawnya Kiernan
The Middlebury Alumni Office, Jolene Newton, & Ian McCray
Jule Emerson, Hallie Zieselman, Mark Evancho and the Middlebury Theatre Department
Pieter Broucke and Middlebury Arts
Ethan Murphy, Daniel Houghton, and The Middlebury Film Department
Sophruka Fukukawa and Danielle Nieves