Simone is a writer of immense talent, imagination and creativity. She's willing to push the envelope on both the front of fantasy and reality, confronting intense moral and political issues in both arenas. This, and her collaborative spirit make her the writer to work with.
Million Dollar Screenwriting/ScreenplayMentor.com
JERUSALEM ROAD has become a powerful and beautifully written screenplay. The opening pulls us right inside the heart of the crisis and into the family who loses that girl who detonated the bomb in the soda can. A brilliant choice.
Simone is a passionate writer who has written a unique and wonderful play. THE SIGN OF A FREE MAN is one of the most dimensional and rich plays I've found. It was amazing how open Simone was to my notes and how quickly she began to clarify her plot points and complex characters' personal histories. The reading was the most valuable part of our work together. What at first had attracted me to the play — a fascinating story with truly compelling characters — is exactly what held up.
Theater Director, Movie Director, Writer
Simone Yehuda is a gifted and first rate storyteller. I have been fortunate to work with Simone on numerous projects through the years. She is an enormous talent and committed collaborator. Working with her on WILLING is one of my fondest artistic memories. I am proud to have been associated with both the work and the writer.
Professor and Chair, University of West Georgia Theatre Company
Should this play, LUCY MOONE or THE SIGN OF A FREE MAN, ever get a production, I would like to direct it. . . Simone represents all sides of an issue with equal force and clarity, an especially difficult task considering the issues at the core of the play. I love the use of humor in the piece. She doesn’t write jokes, she writes humor. She uses humor as a method of dealing with problems: the only way to go.
Artistic Director The Purple Rose Theatre Company
A play born of the New Playwrights Program at the Attic Theatre premiered full bloom tonight. WILLING is a play to watch. Simone Press’ play is like a Michigan farmhouse: fine, well-built, rough hewn. Under Randall Forte’s direction, WILLING, named for a town wooing the Michigan Central Railroad in 1908, is strongest as a play when the integration of set, lights, costumes and quilts are conspiring to reveal the story of a telegraph man who found the WILLING women aptly named and was dispatched to his maker. . . If you’re serious about theatre in Detroit, you must see this production. . . a mighty story told with power and drive.
Commentator, Detroit Channel 4
Throughout the years, I have had the pleasure of working on numerous new scripts, both as an actor and a director. But my collaboration with Simone Press on her play, WILLING, stands out as one of the highlights of my theatrical experiences. . . Simone is a gifted writer, a poet; a sensitive, intelligent woman; an insightful human being with a grand sense of humor. . . It was this director’s paradise to work in a situation so closely with the playwright, especially such an eager, prolific talent. But it is her mastery of language that I must applaud. Simone possesses this unique talent whereby she creates an emotionally charged situation and then dramatizes it with the simplest, most believable dialogue.
In this strong collection, Simone Press seems able to develop her most successful poems in two equally effective directions. Some, such as "Youngstown, Ohio" or "Sunday Waking Up," are of the school of William Carlos Williams in their technique of meticulous observation intensely expressed and deliberately arranged. Others seem very close to Sylvia Plath or Erica Jong in the combination of private imagery and unexpected phrases to create strong, personal statements that demand concentration. . . This book seems to signal the start of a fine career and should be added to serious poetry collections.
Choice Magazine Review of THAW
I know Simone Yehuda as a poet, writer, editor, mentor, teacher, and friend. I am so impressed with her ability to use highly structured poetic forms to communicate deeply felt, surprisingly original experiences that somehow touch me with familiarity. After reading a poem of hers, I always want to say “Thank You,” and then reread it to understand what that thank-you feeling is all about. In her other writing, as well, she uses structure to explore ideas on the cutting edge of contemporary life. As much as I respect her as a poet, I most value her kindness as a mentoring teacher and an editor who knows how to bring out the best in others. Perhaps it is her insight into and empathy for others that makes her poetry, screenwriting, and teaching so powerful.
former Managing Editor, Bridges, A Jewish Feminist Journal
Simone showed me the worth of the sparse, clean, poetic line and the world of memory and imagination. Who would have known when we started, ECLIPSE, Siena’s legendary literary-art magazine with advice from Simone’s keen heart and mind, that it would continue to be published 30 years later? Who would have known in those early days that Simone would examine the wayward verse of a beginning poet and place him on the long and arduous journey into the wilderness of language, metaphor, and magic? Who would have known that the young poet, who tended to talk too much without listening, would learn the ways of listening and seeing from Simone’s calm voice and wisdom? Who would have known the manner of the creative and scholarly touch instilled into the young poet by Simone, that he would keep his bright and open eyes on the prize, and that after 30 years of teaching, he would hold the highest university rank, having published 14 books of poems?
Poet and author of The Town Clock Burning, We Did Not Fear The Father: New and Selected Poems, Mrs. Belladonna’s Supper Club Waltz, New and Selected Prose Poems, Volumes 1 and 2
Simone is one of the most effective and astounding instructors I have ever encountered. She did more than instruct on a subject; she made it real, she made it vibrant, she made it impact your life. In our writing class, she ran a great workshop where students shared their work in a non-judgmental environment. And yet, no one was allowed to be satisfied with anything in the script that wasn’t working well. . . She asks the tough questions, points out the flaws, and makes the writer correct them, while making the writer understand that criticism is not judgment: that your feelings and your story are always valid and that you have a responsibility to the material to present it in the best possible way. . . The things I understood and experienced as a direct result of her teaching have left an indelible mark on my life, not only as an instructor myself, but as a human being.
Assistant Professor of Communication, Spring Arbor University
In all my classes with Professor Yehuda, she challenged me to examine what I can learn about myself from the stories of others. Drama was not just for the page or stage; drama is in our own lives and those of the people around us. She opened up the bigger picture: as a teacher she pushed me to do my best; as a friend, she brought out the best in me.
Writer, Audio & Multimedia Producer, Personal Historian
My debt of gratitude goes to my English professor, Simone Yehuda, who taught me . . . art! If you can, imagine years of drawing with a dull pencil and one day you are given a box of crayons. Not the dinky box, the GIANT box. The one with silver, copper, and even gold. Rhetoric was the most fun, challenging, insightful class I have ever taken! I learned how to write in color. Professor Yehuda made me love learning all over again, and for the first time since 8th grade, I thought, I REALLY want to be a teacher!