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December 2020: Karen takes on the role of Hollywood legend Bette Davis in Interviewing Miss Davis by award-winning playwright Laura Maria Censabella; brought to you by the Fountain Theatre’s Saturday Matinee Series. Inspired by a true event in Ms. Censabella’s own life, the one-act is set in 1985 as Davis interviews a new personal assistant (Wonjung Kim) upon learning that her current, beloved assistant (and nurse) Jacqueline (Aleisha Force) is leaving. Watch the play.

June 2019: Interview with Karen about her late-friend and companion Lex Barker during his last days – Read here

March 2019: The Whip has been selected as a finalist in the 2018 Screen Craft Cinematic Book Competition. The book is one of twenty-five finalists selected from 1,200 submissions.

December 2018: The NY Times’ Tim Arango wrote an article on Charley Parkhurst, mentions The Whip and Karen Kondazian – Overlooked No More: Charley Parkhurst, Gold Rush Legend With a Hidden IdentityRead here

August 2016: Don Grigware of Broadwayworld.com reviews Baby Doll at The Fountain Theatre, co-starring Karen as Aunt Rose Comfort. Read review here

June 2016: Linda Thompson discusses “The Whip” and Charley Parkhurst with Karen on  The Author ShowListen here

 May 2016: Karen awards Sevan Kaloustian Greene ​for Forgotten Bread the 2017 Kondazian Award for Armenian Stories – Read press release here

May 2016: The award in Karen’s parents’ name, Lillian and Varnum Paul, awards June Carryl ​for The Good Minister From Harare, the 2017 Saroyan/Paul Human Rights Playwriting Prize – Read press release here

The California State Library, California History Room reviews and features a book once a week from their collection that captures an aspect of this state’s rich history and culture. We’re proud to share that “The Whip” was selected it to be the Library’s current “Book of the Week.” Please click to read review:


Tennessee Williams’ Baby Doll (that Karen co-starred in) wins
Best Ensemble performances, Best Production and Best Director for 2016 Eddon Awards.
Click here for press release.

The Huffington Post names Baby Doll Top Ten of 2016 L.A. Theatre Productions

Click here for article

Karen starring in Tennessee Williams’ West Coast Premiere of Baby Doll at The Fountain Theatre in Los Angeles, CA (June 29 thru October 30, 2016).



“Baby Doll” at the Fountain Theatre, 2016. From left to right: Daniel Bess, Lindsay LaVanchy, Karen Kondazian, John Prosky. Directed by Simon Levy.


“Karen Kondazian, so well known and honored for playing many of Williams’s lusty and often coarse leading female characters, makes a U-turn that any appropriately rabid fan of her work will find to be something of a shock. Her dotty and lost Aunt Rose Comfort, who sports a ratty grey wig that looks as though it might house a nest of sparrows, lives a foggy nomadic existence, camping out with and cooking terrible meals for her sea of relatives to earn her keep. Kondazian delivers a miraculous performance; never has she been so vulnerable or courageous, adding a fantastic and unexpected twist to her celebrated career interpreting all those quirky, bawdy anti-heroines generated inside the unsettled mind of the greatest playwright of the 20th century.”
Arts in LA Theatre Review by Travis Michael Holder

“Karen Kondazian as Aunt Rose Comfort is wondrous. It is delicious delight to watch her create a full inner life with a character that has less dialogue. Her reactions really tell the story.” – Broadwayworld.com review by Don Grigware.

Moving in and out of the action is Baby Doll’s aunt Rose (Karen Kondazian), a batty old lady who provides a lot of badly needed comic relief. Kondazian, who has starred in numerous Williams productions, including a 1979 production of The Rose Tattoo for which she received a Drama Critics Circle Award, is a scene-stealing hoot.”
Total Theatre review by Willard Manus

“The talented Karen Kondazian, as worn-out Aunt Rose, adds comic relief… and draws out the audience’s sympathies.”
Discover Hollywood Magazine review by Bill Garry

“Karen Kondazian as Aunt Rose Comfort is seasoning for the gumbo.  Pixilated and homeless, her efforts to stay on board with Archie and Baby Doll are endearing.”
On Stage Los Angeles review by Michael Sheehan

“Aunt Rose Comfort (the delightfully dotty Karen Kondazian), is an older, not too bright, single woman who has survived as a family cook going from relative to relative in times of need or desperation.”
Paul Myrvold’s Theatre Notes review by Paul Myrvold

“…the divine Kondazian making Aunt Rose as huggable as she is pitiable.”
Stage Scene LA review by Steven Stanley

“Karen Kondazian, who plays the role of dotty Aunt Rose Comfort, has starred in numerous Williams productions, including a 1979 production of The Rose Tattoo for which she received the Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle Award – and which led to a steadfast friendship with Williams until his death in 1983. Here she plays a good woman suffering from dementia who takes great joy in visiting friends in comas at the local hospital so she can eat all their chocolate candy. Life has passed poor Aunt Rose by and Kondazian portrays this pitiful character to perfection.”
Culver City News review by Shari Barrett

“Aunt Rose Comfort, deliciously played by Karen Kondazian, serves as both comic relief and an anchor to reality.”
The Los Angeles Post review by Dan Berkowitz


Now available on Ebook! The newly revised and edited
The Actor’s Encyclopedia of Casting Directors

This in-depth ebook about the casting process informs actors what each casting director likes, dislikes and is searching for in the audition process. Featuring over 100 interviews with Casting Directors, they have the talent to identify which actor will fit that one role, filtering through hundreds of ‘potentials,’ eventually delivering that actor into the hands of the decision makers.


The Whip featured on the cover of Publishers Weekly.


The Whip has been racking up all kinds of awards:


The Whip wins the 2014 Readers Favorite Gold Medal Prize in the Fiction-Western category! Read press release.

The Whip awarded Gold Prize in Historical Fiction & Best Western Fiction2013 Global Ebook Awards.
Read More

The Whip awarded “Best Western” – 2013 International Book Awards – Honoring excellence in independent and mainstream publishing. Press Release

“The Whip” wins “Best Western” – 2013 National Indie Excellence Awards – This Los Angeles-based competition is judged by independent experts from all aspects of the indie book industry, including publishers, writers, editors, book cover designers and professional copywriters. Read More

USA Book AwardUSABookNews.com, the premier online magazine and review website for mainstream and independent publishing houses, announced the winners and finalists of THE 2012 USA BEST BOOK AWARDS on November 16, 2012. Winners and finalists were announced in over 100 categories covering print, e-books and audio books. Awards were presented for titles published in 2012. The Whip won the 2012 USA News Book Award Best Historical Fiction.


New Videos!

Karen visits Charley Parkhurst’s grave at the Pioneer Odd Fellows Cemetery in Watsonville, CA.

Cold Spring Tavern Stagecoach Stop. Karen details the Tavern’s history and its connection to Charley Parkhurst. The Tavern was built the 1860’s as a way station to serve the travelers on the new “turnpike” over the San Marcos pass that was constructed by Chinese laborers to ease transportation over the mountains.

‘Stagecoach Rules of the Road.’ Featuring highlights from the Wine For Words Gala Fundraiser – Friends of the Library, Placerville chapter.

NBC/ABC Monterey Highlights Karen Kondazian and The Whip – New novel details legendary Watsonville woman’s life. Watch the video.


New Interviews!

Q&A with Karen Kondazian in Morgan Hill Life Magazine by Marty Cheek: Surprising history of ‘one-eyed’ Charley Parkhurst told in ‘The Whip.’ Read interview

Karen interviewed by Reiner Boller about her relationship with actor, Lex Barker.
Read in English
Read in German

A fun video interview with Actors Studio Interviewer and member John Solari, on May 3. 2015 – talking about Acting and Life and the stories that turned us into who we are.
Part One / Part Two

From Hollywood Starlet To Award-Winning Author of An Old West Saga, a conversation with Karen on Interviewing Authors with Tim Knox. Listen here

Rachel Thompson, San Francisco Book Review columnist & Principal of Bad Redhead Media interviews Karen. Discussed are The Whip’s themes, how to apply acting methods to the writing process, how writing at night may be the purest form of getting words onto the page and Karen’s worldly adventures. Click to watch

Interview with Karen on RobGirlBooks’ blog. Read more

Art Kusnetz The Cafe interview w/ Karen Kondazian. Read the interview.

Bookpleasures.com Norm Goldman interviews Karen Kodanzian. Read the interview.

Peter Robinson interviews Karen Kondazian for The Commuter Times. Read the interview.

Read the Fountain Theater Blog interview with Karen Kondazian.

You have the chance to play the game of casting The Whip movie on IFLIST.com…

… let’s hear your ideas! (Jennifer Lawrence, Shailene Woodley, George Clooney, Morgan Freeman have already been nominated!) Play the game.


Event Announcement!

Karen to participate in IWOSC READS ITS OWN. The event takes place on Sunday August 3rd, 2014 from 2-4pm at Vroman’s Bookstore, 695 E. Colorado Blvd., Pasadena, CA 91101. Read press release.


Kirkus reviews The Whip

The Whip reviewed by the Kirkus Review. Read the review.


New interview segment on the Travel Channel

Karen talks about Charley Parkhurst on Travel Channel’s “Hotel Secrets & Legends: Oregon’s Wolf Creek Tavern.” Watch clip here
Or, Stream full episode via Amazon


New reviews of The Whip are in!

Review of The Whip by Julia Ann Charpentier via ForeWord Reviews. Read the review

Gold Rush Woman Lived Her Life Disguised as a Man, a review of The Whip by Mary Magee on Gateline. Read more

Review of The Whip by Danika on The Lesbrary Book Blog. Read more

The Whip reviewed by Dawn Wink in Story Circle Book Reviews Read more

An essay/review comparing the alteration of appearance for survival in The Whip and H.G. Wells’ The Invisible Man by Avil Beckford. Read more

Broadway World.com reviewer Don Grigware names The Whip “Best Of 2013” on his book list! Read more

Women Writing the West Blog announces two “Best Western” awards “The Whip received in 2013 by the International Book Awards and National Indie Excellence Awards. Read More

Kayti Nika Raet reviews The Whip on Readers’ Favorite. Read more

Vanessa Kachadurian reviews The Whip on She Writes Blog. Read more

Advocate.com: The Whip: Straddling Gender Roles in the Wild West by Nick Pachelli. Read the article.

Bookotron.com article – Karen Kondazian Cracks ‘The Whip’


The Whip in The World News Report
The Little Book That Could: As Novel Continues to Win Awards, Author Reflects on the Value of Perseverance. Read more

Accessing Your Emotions for Writing through Acting Exercises article by Karen Kondazian, featured on The Artist Unleashed blog. Read more

The Whip featured on Indie Book Promo.com. Read more

“The Whip” was voted one of the Top 12 Best Western Books on Goodreads.com. Click to view list

Robin Weigert (Calamity Jane/HBO’s “Deadwood”) talks about narrating The Whip” audio book on “It Matters Radio” Watch here

The Whip featured on The Spirited Woman Top 12 Spring Reading list!
Click here to view the list and find out more about Spirited Woman, one of the leading women’s empowerment communities in the world.

The Whip Voted #1 on Goodreads.com poll: Books That Should Be Made Into A Movie.
Click here to vote!

Karen Kondazian makes her 2nd appearance on  the Jan Wahl Show – KRON 4, San Francisco.
Click here to watch.

The Whip is a “Featured Western” on Western E-books.com. View the page.

The Whip Audio Book is now available!
Karen Kondazian’s Critically Acclaimed Novel The Whip to be Released by Audible.com as an Audiobook.
View the audiobook.

Read an excerpt of The Whip in the Huffington Post
Read excerpt.


The Whip featured on Heidi M. Thomas’ blog.
Heidi is a WILLA Literary Award and Epic Award Winner. Read the blog.

Watsonville’s Register-Pajaronian article: Novel about local legend Parkhurst earns award.
Read the article.

Metamorphosis – Janice Brooks on The Whip in Elan Woman’s Magazine. Read the article.

The Hot Mommas Project: The Whip: Celebrate Social Justice, Women’s Leadership, and Win. Read the article.


KRON/NBC’s Jan Wahl discusses why The Whip would make a great film. Read the article.

The Whip still #1 on the Book Soup Bestseller List for a 2nd week in a row. See the list.

Fountain Theatre Actress Karen Kondazian at Book Soup. Read the announcement.

Women Writing the West Blog post on The Whip. Read the post.


The Whip book tour for The Whip begins in Watsonville, CA. Read more here.

Read the Watsonville’s Register-Pajaronian article on The Whip.

Read how Kondazian liberates Charley Parkhurst’s story in her novel The Whip.