Skip to main content

Score: A Journey Through Gaslighting 

A powerful play that allows the audience to explore the subtle and insidious nature of gaslighting in a father-daughter relationship. Directed by Halena Kays.

Thursday, May 18, 2023 | 7:00pm

The story begins with seemingly harmless arguments, but as the narrative unfolds, the audience gains insight into the toxic and abusive dynamics at play. In addition to examining gaslighting, the play also delves into the impact of alienating consensual casual sex on the mental health of adolescents and young adults in heterosexual relationships. With its nuanced portrayal of complex characters and societal expectations, Score seeks to empower its audience with the tools to identify and understand the damaging effects of gaslighting. 

The play is deeply connected to mental health as it sheds light on the psychological manipulation that is gaslighting, and how it can affect a person’s sense of reality and self-worth. Additionally, the play explores the potential mental health impact of alienating consensual casual sexual experiences among adolescents and young adults, raising awareness of the importance of mental well-being in various aspects of life. 

Originally from Santa Fe, New Mexico, Ariel Stess is a resident playwright of New Dramatists, an affiliated artist of The Playwrights’ Center, and a New Georges Affiliated Artist. Her work has been developed or produced by Playwrights Horizons, The Playwrights’ Center, Clubbed Thumb, The Bushwick Starr, New Georges, Mabou Mines, Brave New World Repertory Theatre, and The Lark. Recent productions includeThe World My Mama Raised (with Clubbed Thumb; directed by Kip Fagan; NYC), Heartbreak (with The Bushwick Starr, co-produced by New Georges; directed by Ariel; Brooklyn), and I’m Pretty Fucked Up (with Clubbed Thumb; directed by Kip Fagan; NYC). She’s been a New Georges Audrey Resident (NYC) and a resident at Yaddo Artists’ Colony (NY), SPACE on Ryder Farm with Playwrights Horizons (NY), and Mabou Mines Resident Artist Program (NYC). She has been commissioned by Playwrights Horizons and Clubbed Thumb. She holds a BA from Bard College and an MFA in Playwriting from Brooklyn College. She is an Assistant Professor of Instruction at Northwestern University in the Radio/TV/Film Department.