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Lee Edward Colston II is a Black, Queer, former prison guard and MMA Fighter turned actor, writer, director, teacher, and author. He was a finalist for the 2017 IAMA Theatre Company’s Shonda Rhimes Unsung Voices Playwriting Commission and a recipient of the National Black Theatre’s I AM SOUL Playwrights Residency. The First Deep Breath received critical acclaim as “…one of the best Chicago plays of the decade…” after its world premiere at Victory Gardens Theater in Chicago, earning Colston a 2020 Steinberg/ATCA New Play Award given by the American Theatre Critics Association. Past winners include Lynn Nottage, August Wilson, and Horton Foote. Some of Colston’s other plays include: Roost, For Which It Stands, Solitary, Holla, and Birthday Cake. Colston previously wrote on Fargo (FX) starring Chris Rock. His episode “East/West” was named one of the top TV Episodes of 2020 by The Hollywood Reporter. Colston has developed television projects at HBO with Academy Award winners Laura Dern, Eric Roth, and Alex Gibney. He has also developed with Emmy Award winners Joe Fields and Joel Weisberg at FX. Currently, Lee is a co-producer on Ryan Murphy’s American Sports Story: Gladiator and is developing a series with Emmy Award–winning The Handmaid’s Tale producer Warren Littlefield. Colston earned his M.F.A. in Acting at The Juilliard School and is repped by Silver Lining Entertainment and CAA.