Ride the Dark Cars

“Seldom in recent memory does a relatively young Rockland County playwright develop a stage thriller that is interesting to viewers, challenging to performers, and provocative… This is a beautifully constructed ensemble thriller where secrets are revealed and questions answered. RIDE THE DARK CARS is a study of power and the abuse of power with further ramifications within the vary narrow confines of one couple.”

-Norman Garfield, The Rockland-Westchester Journal News


Lavinia Speaks

“The play is very well constructed, never over-explanatory. Plot points are mentioned here, picked up adroitly there, until there is a recognizable, fallible, very real woman. Lavinia invokes one of her namesakes, from TITUS ADRONICUS, whose hands were cut off and tongue cut out. This Lavinia, though, communicates very expressively, even when she is tied in knots. Her life is not always pretty, and certainly not easy, but definitely worth listening to.”

-David Mackler, The Off-Off-Broadway Review

Jennie Redling
Playwright, Librettist, Screenwriter

The Harvest

“The photograph of a 17-year-old girl in a museum in Minsk is the centerpiece of The Harvest, a volatile new play by Jennie Susan Staniloff, directed by Hugh O’Gorman at the Mint Theater Company. The girl, Masha Bruskina, was a member of the resistance executed by Nazi troops in 1941, and her black-and-white image has been reproduced time and again in Soviet textbooks, encyclopedias and magazines. But Byelorussian authorities have resisted a two-decade-long campaign to identify her by name, despite testimony from surviving relatives and experts. Officially, Masha is “nietzvitnaya,” a nobody, a war hero better left without an identity; for while she was hanged as an intrepid partisan, she was also a Jew. Ms. Staniloff gives Masha much more than a face. She gives her history, life and identifiable passion…  The Mint Theater’s program for “The Harvest” says the company will install a permanent plaque commemorating “Masha Bruskina, Heroine” in its lobby. But the repertory’s performance inside the theater is tribute itself.”

-James Sturz, THE FORWARD

 “My Heart is the Drum has everything a great musical should have: a gorgeously complex yet accessible score; rich storytelling; compelling, well-developed characters; and a vibrant setting that draws us into both the charm and the underbelly of a world that’s foreign to most Americans….”
“My Heart is the Drum [is] a beautiful work that brims with emotion. …illuminating lyrics by Luftig propel this sweeping story.”

– Kerry Clawson, Akron Beacon Journal

“Authentic, epic, transportive, rich sense of storytelling. Transported through that score. Absolutely blown away.”
“The lyrics were fantastic. Poetic, true to the characters, and inventive.”
“[The lyrics were] …vivid, poetic, authentic, accessible.”

– NAMT Festival Nominating Committee

My Heart is the Drum

“By the time the final curtain falls on Village Theatre’s world premiere of My Heart is the Drum, you’ll know you’ve just witnessed something extraordinary… I will say this — it’s not often you can say you were there when greatness debuted. “My Heart is the Drum” is that opportunity.”

-David Hayes, The Issaqua Press

 “It’s to Redling’s credit that her script never devolves into melodrama. If anything, it’s understated. Every plot “twist” is hard-earned by the reality of the setting. Though it becomes integral to the plot, the AIDS epidemic spends most of its time as a specter silently stalking the characters from hidden corners in their everyday lives. The show’s conflicts aren’t acute; they’re mounting tensions that refuse to ease up.”

-Daniel Nash,  Kirkland Reporter


“The sweet personal relationships among the characters are beautifully rendered…My Heart is the Drum” is a play that reaches a place that needs to be reached. It left me with heightened awareness and renewed hope.”

-James Spangler, Edmond’s Beacon.