By John Ostapkovich

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – A New York playwright has embarked on a two-year collaboration with an unlikely partner — the Historical Society of Pennsylvania.

“An Artist Embedded” is a new take on the artist-in-residence.

In this case, thanks to a Pew grant, playwright/historian Ain Gordon will begin work on a production germinating from various struggles for freedom that ripple through our past.

Gordon will meet with society staff and the public in refining the idea.

“So we decided we would begin to have these conversations as a means for guiding my research as I am kind of plundering their archives looking for source material to write a new play,” he says.

The Society’s Beth Twiss Houting says the collaboration goes beyond this play:

“Public programs where we’ll be bringing in scholars, for instance, to talk about the issues of is history always truthful? Is the fiction we make up to fill in the story a bad thing or a good thing.”

Eventually, there will be an evening length play presented at The Painted Bride theater.

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