Sam Max (they/them) is a writer, director, performer, visual artist, and musician. They are interested in stories that unfold in expressive psychological settings, using queer logic to probe themes of childhood, sexuality, and death.
Sam is a 2020 Robert Chesley/Victor Bumbalo Playwriting Award winner, and has received residencies and grants from the Helene Wurlitzer Foundation (Taos NM), The Mastheads (Pittsfield MA) and the Foundation for Contemporary Arts. Their plays include Twin Size Beds (Under the Radar Festival at The Public, Joe’s Pub at The Public), Prosperity! (workshop, Rough Draft Festival), Coop (workshop, Pipeline Theatre Company), and Pidor and the Wolf (Finalist, 2019 O’Neill National Playwrights Conference). They have shown and developed work at Museum of Sex, Next Door at New York Theatre Workshop, and Loading Dock Theatre, and have been a member of The Public Theater’s Devised Theater Working Group and Pipeline Theatre Company’s PlayLab. Sam was a recent addition to the Young & Hungry List, tracking “Hollywood’s Top 100 New Writers.” They have led artist workshops in France, Romania, and Indonesia, and currently reside in Brooklyn.
As a visual artist and designer, favorite collaborations have included Esperanza Spalding (European and American tours), Amyra León, Dane Terry (“Dreamboy” podcast with Night Vale Presents), Grace McLean, and Erin Markey. Designs for stage include Brief Chronicle Books 6-8 (i am a slow tide & Access Theater), Machinal at Lee Strasberg Institute, Salty (Lyra & Access Theater), and Nighthawks (Dixon Place). Other projects have included CAVE (Brunel Museum, London) and Carnival/Animals (work-in-progress, 999 Festival) in collaboration with conductor Eli Brown and light installation artist Laura Hilliard. Associate and assistant design credits include Joan Baez’s Silver Blade music video, Selkie at The Wild Project, Jupiter’s Lifeless Moons at Performance Space New York, Dinner with Georgette at Next Door at New York Theatre Workshop, and Inner Voices at Barrow Group. Sam is an alum of the Wingspace Theatrical Design Mentorship, and formerly the visual artist-in-residence for Scholars for Syria, a nonprofit building community around the current sociopolitical crisis in Syria.