Discipline: Literature – nonfiction

Toni Schlesinger

Discipline: Literature – nonfiction
Region: New York, NY
MacDowell Fellowships: 2007

Toni Schlesinger is a New York City-based playwright, performer, theater designer, journalist, and graphic serial creator.

Her most recent stage piece in 2014: (writer/designer/performer): The Mystery of Pearl Street, a three-person play, based on the strange, real-life, un-solved disappearance of two artists from their Lower Manhattan loft (first developed as a non-fiction book in progress at MacDowell). Dixon Place awarded her a three-month “exceptional artist” residency and a commissioned-run.

Coming in October 2014: Toni’s New Plays: Sex and Death.

Schlesinger has also written, designed, often performed in 20-some of her original off-off-Broadway plays (full length, two, three, and one-person one-acts, and also puppetry/toy theater pieces) at Dixon Place, St. Ann’s Warehouse, The Metropolitan Playhouse, La Mama, HERE, the Ohio Theater, including The Long, Slow Death of Lila Remy (a fictional noir about murder, sex, money) and The Toni Schlesinger Show, interviewing famous puppets in the manner of Charlie Rose over six evenings.

A longtime journalist, Schlesinger wrote a column every week for eight years for The Village Voice, originating the award-winning “Shelter” column: how people live/survive in the city.

Princeton Architectural Press published the best of her columns in her book, Five Flights Up. Tom Hanks praised it: “a must-read.”

Additional columns: The New York Observer, The Chicago Reader. Feature writer: The New York Times, Slate.com's Double X, etc.

She conceived and wrote the graphic serial Kansas O’Flaherty: Secret Agent with drawings by The New Yorker magazine’s Tom Bachtell.www.salon.com



Toni Schlesinger worked in the Mansfield studio.

The Helen Coolidge Mansfield Studio was donated by graduates of the Mansfield War Service Classes for Reconstruction Aides. Helen Mansfield helped found the New York MacDowell Club. The small, shingled frame structure with stone foundation was originally fronted on the west side by a neat white picket fence and gate, a garden, and a stone pathway…

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