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The Securely Conferred, Vouchsafed Keepsakes of Maery S.

The Securely Conferred, Vouchsafed Keepsakes of Maery S.

Regular price $ 16.00 USD
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Sibyl Kempson
Dec 2023
226 pages, 20 full color
5 x 7 inches
paper/perfect bound
ISBN: 978-1737025511

By combining literary and dramatic narrative with eye-witness accounts of Sasquatch encounters culled from the internet, The Securely Conferred, Vouchsafed Keepsakes of Maery S. reinvents as many versions of the Frankenstein author Mary Shelley as there are definitions of the word “Gothic.” In this work, a string of financial, maternal, and familial misfortunes causes Shelley—referred to in this production as Maery S.—to spawn a monstrous creative expression, which takes on its own life and violent history. Maery cannot help but fall in love with her Monster, only to see it “collected” and imprisoned by charitable funding at a mandatory artists’ residency.


Kempson’s plays have been presented in the United States, Germany, and Norway. As a performer she toured internationally from 2000-2011 with Nature Theater of Oklahoma, New York City Players, and Elevator Repair Service. Her own work has received support from the Jerome Foundation, the Greenwall Foundation, National Endowment for the Arts, and Dixon Place. She was given four Mondo Cane! commissions from 2002-2011 for The Wytche of Problymm PlantationCrime or EmergencyPotatoes of August, and The Secret Death of Puppets). She received an MAP Fund grant for her collaboration with Elevator Repair Service (Fondly, Collette Richland) at New York Theatre Workshop (NYTW), a 2018 PEN/Laura Pels International Foundation for Theater Award for American Playwright at Mid-Career (specifically honoring “her fine craft, intertextual approach, and her body of work, including Crime or Emergency and Let Us Now Praise Susan Sontag”), and a 2014 USA Artists Rockefeller fellowship with NYTW and director Sarah Benson. She received a 2013 Virginia B. Toulmin Foundation commission for Kyckling and Screaming (a translation/adaptation of Ibsen’s The Wild Duck), a 2013-14 McKnight National residency and commission for a new play (The Securely Conferred, Vouchsafed Keepsakes of Maery S.), a New Dramatists/Full Stage USA commission for a devised piece (From the Pig Pile: The Requisite Gesture(s) of Narrow Approach), and a National Presenters Network Creation Fund Award for the same project. Her second collaboration with David Neumann/Advanced Beginner Group, I Understand Everything Better, received a Bessie Award for Outstanding Production in 2015; the first was Restless Eye at New York Live Arts in 2012. Current and upcoming projects include a new opera with David Lang for the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston for 2018, Sasquatch Rituals at The Kitchen in April 2018, and The Securely Conferred, Vouchsafed Keepsakes of Maery S. Kempson is a MacDowell Colony fellow; a member of New Dramatists; a USA Artists Rockefeller fellow; an artist-in-residence at the Abrons Arts Center; a 2014 nominee for the Doris Duke Impact Award, the Laurents Hatcher Award, and the Herb Alpert Award; and a New York Theatre Workshop Usual Suspect. Her plays are published by 53rd State Press, PLAY: Journal of Plays, and Performance & Art Journal (PAJ). In addition to Sarah Lawrence College, she teaches and has taught experimental performance writing at Brooklyn College and the Eugene Lang College at the New School in New York City. Kempson launched the 7 Daughters of Eve Theater & Performance Co. in April 2015 at the Martin E. Segal Center at the City University of New York. The company’s inaugural production, Let Us Now Praise Susan Sontag, premiered at Abrons Arts Center in New York City. A new piece, Public People’s Enemy, was presented in October 2018 at the Ibsen Awards and Conference in Ibsen’s hometown of Skien, Norway. 12 Shouts to the Ten Forgotten Heavens, a three-year cycle of rituals for the Whitney Museum of American Art in the Meatpacking District of New York City, began on the vernal equinox in March 2016 to recur on each solstice and equinox through December 2018. SLC, 2016–

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