ABOUT

New Plays, New Voices, New Talents

CPI was formed in November 1996 and exists to serve the local Cincinnati community of playwrights, directors and actors who wish to pursue the art and craft of playwriting. CPI’s goal is to enhance the cultural awareness of the community by offering new, original work by local playwrights in both an entertaining and educational setting. We present low cost staged readings to the general public for playwrights to receive valuable feedback on their work and for audiences to be part of the creative process with the playwright. 

CPI Elected Officers

President

Susan Decatur

Susan rejuvenated her love of the Dramatic Arts after a successful business career in Advertising. She was reintroduced to the theater working as an actor and now a playwright. 

Susan has been cast in CPI staged readings for the plays 1832 (August 2017), Humble Pie (February 2018), All Decked Out and Going West (March 2019) and Cold Serial in May 2019. She currently serves on its board as the President and Marketing Manager and as its former Treasurer and Marketing Manager since 2018.

Susan has performed on stage as Snow White in the Contrary Tales production of The Big Bad Wolves at Village Players in Fort Thomas, KY in June 2018. She was cast in August 2019 as Destiny, a featured dancer with the ensemble for Rock of Ages with Queen City Productions. In September 2019, she performed the role of Emily Gorski in the Sunset Players September 2019 production of Greetings! Susan was also cast in Cole, an Entertainment where she performed as a vocalist and dancer for the Loveland Stage Company in November 2019. She returned to the stage in September 2023  playing the role of Kate in Geezers for Tri-County Players in Evendale.

As a playwright, Susan’s first 10-minute play, Denise’s Do-Over was selected for the February 2019 CPI and American Heart Association staged readings, “Lovefest, Romantic Shorts from the Heart.” Denise’s Do-Over was also selected for a staged production at The Drama Workshop’s 10-minute play festival, “Home Brew Theater” in June 2019 at the Glenmore Playhouse in Cheviot. Denise’s Do-Over was again selected by TDW for their “Home View Theater” virtual play performances on December 4th 2020.  Recently Susan had a ten-minute play, It’s the Ecology, Stupid performed at Earthfest 2024 to a sold out audience.

She co-wrote her first full-length play Unfinished Business with her husband, Doug Decatur, which was selected for a staged reading at the Aronoff by CPI for its 2021 season and was previously selected to the Second Round in the playwriting competition at the October 2020 Austin Film Festival in addition to being selected as a Finalist in the ScreenCraft stage playwriting competition in December 2020. She has recently finished her own full-length play Not Just Cousins which was performed virtually by the Dramatists Guild of NY on May 15, 2020 and upon which her 10-minute play Buy the Book was excerpted and selected to be performed virtually at the Know Theatre in February, 2021 for its Thunderzoom Serials 11 playwriting competition. Not Just Cousins was also selected for a CPI staged reading on November 15, 2022 at the Fifth Third Theater. She and her husband, Doug Decatur also had a staged reading on November 14, 2023 for their play Lovestruck, based on their own saga of love and discovery.

Susan is a graduate of Miami University, Oxford, OH and obtained her MBA in 2013 from Indiana Wesleyan University. She has served as CPI’s Treasurer and Marketing Manager since 2018 and was elected President in May 2024.

Vice President

Roger Collins

Roger Collins is a clinical psychologist by training (Ph.D.) and a Professor Emeritus with the University of Cincinnati College of Education, Human Development, and Criminal Justice.  He received the Cohen Award for Excellence in Teaching at the university and was known for integrating fiction into his psychology courses.  He eventually moved from assigning fiction to writing fiction; short stories at first, and eventually stage plays.  The Cincinnati Playwrights Initiative – the playwrights, theater professionals, and its programs – have significantly helped him hone his craft as a creative writer.  Over the last several years, his short stories and short dramas have been published in a variety of literary journals and his stage plays have been produced in Cincinnati and Dayton, Ohio, Fort Thomas, Kentucky, Brooklyn, NY, and San Francisco, CA.  His debut novel, ‘Cities of Glass,’ is forthcoming (All Things That Matter Press, 2022).

Secretary

Bertha Davis

Bertha recently joined CPI after her daughter attended Lovefest 2 and told Bertha she should send in her plays so she did!  After a 33 year career at P&G, Bertha has had immediate success with her plays having staged a full production of It’s Complicated at the Fairfield Community Arts Theater in October 2023 followed by her CPI staged reading debut of her first ten-minute play, Boy Meets Girl in November 2023.

She launched Three Babies Productions which combines her business experience and her passion for the arts and people through her plays and public speaking.

Bertha has appeared on stage and film produced by Throne of Grace Productions. She enjoys volunteer work in the community supporting youth programs and diversity and inclusion programs.

 

Treasurer

Doug Decatur

Doug is an accomplished Cincinnati playwright and non-fiction author. He’s also a proud Bearcat and Xavier alum and still plays basketball in his sixties with the Shooting Stars of Cincinnati where the team placed 6th in the country at the July 2023 National Senior Games. Doug has been an active CPI member since 2012 and served as its President in 2021/2022 and was voted as its Treasurer in May 2024.

Doug wrote The Pool Boy, a ten-minute play staged for CPI’s “Lovefest, Romantic Shorts from the Heart” fundraiser in February 2019.  Prior to that, Doug wrote The Big Bad Wolves another 10-minute play, which was staged in June 2018 at the Village Players in Fort Thomas, KY. Doug’s third ten-minute play, Special Delivery was selected and performed at the Know Theatre for its Thunderzoom Serials 11 play competition in March 2021. Doug and Susan’s compilation of ten-minute romantic comedies, Lovestruck, was performed in November 2023 at the Aronoff. Doug recently had his ten-minute play, Earthworks performed at CPI’s recent Earthfest 2024.

Over the past 10 years Doug has had five full-length staged readings with CPI, 1832, Redford’s Rules, Righting Redford, Ticket to a Lotto Love and Unfinished Business.

Doug was also chosen to appear in the ensemble cast of the Loveland Stage Company’s production of Cole, An Entertainment in November 2018 where he narrated and danced with his wife, Susan Decatur to the Cole Porter classic, “Night and Day.”

Doug’s newest full-length play, Unfinished Business, which he co-wrote with his wife, Susan Decatur, received a staged reading in September 2021. It has been nationally recognized by the Austin Film Festival in 2020 where it was selected for the Second Round in its playwriting script competition and by ScreenCraft in Los Angeles in 2020 where it was selected as a Finalist in their stage playwriting competition.

His two non-fiction books Behind the Scenes Baseball and Traded were published by ACTA Sports in 2006 and 2009, respectively. Doug also wrote Black Acre, a mystery romance novel that he co-wrote with his wife and publicist, Susan Decatur.