Iraisa Ann Reilly is a theatre artist (writer, actor, director and producer) from the great state of New Jersey. Most of her work may be found in Philadelphia, New York, and throughout NJ. She is currently a member of The Foundry, a 3 –year development program for Philadelphia based playwrights facilitated by Play Penn. Iraisa Ann graduated from the University of Notre Dame with a BA in Film, Television, and Theatre as well as English. She is honored to have had Anne Garcia-Romero as her playwriting professor at Notre Dame. Since then she has also studied playwriting at the Barrow Group in New York City with Arlene Hutton, and has been a part of various workshops with Play Penn in Philadelphia. In 2016 Iraisa Ann was a part of the inaugural Maria Irene Fornes Workshop in Chicago led by Migdalia Cruz, and most recently had the pleasure of being a member of Labyrinth Theatre’s 2018 Summer Intensive.
As the daughter of a Cuban Refugee mother and Irish-American father, her writing is marked by cross-cultural and multi-ethnic themes. She is particularly interested in Latino-American theatre, bilingualism, and the experiences of refugees and immigrants in the United States. Her love of Latino theatre comes from the fact that many Latino plays hold a reverence for a world that is unseen; in these plays the spiritual world does not come into question, and is given as much validity as the physical world. It is her mission to use her work as a writer to address social concerns and affect change.
As an actor, some of her favorite roles include “Yaz” in Water By the Spoonful (South Camden Theatre Co.), “Edith” in Blithe Spirit (Cape May Stage) and “Stacey” in The Alice of Ward 13 ( New Jersey Playwright’s Contest, William Patterson). Aside from acting and writing, she has worked as a teaching artist for Philadelphia Young Playwrights, Theatre Horizon’s Autism Drama Program in Norristown, PA, and Act II Playhouse in Ambler, PA.
Iraisa Ann produced her first full length play, One Day Old, for the Philadelphia Fringe Festival in 2016. One Day Old tells the true story of Operacion Pedro Pan through the lens of a dream. Operacion Pedro Pan brought over 14,000 unaccompanied minors to the United States from Cuba following the Communist Revolution. To learn more about One Day Old and Iraisa Ann’s plan to use this story to assist with the current crisis involving unaccompanied immigrant children,Click Here