Short plays and senior theses written by undergraduate playwriting students will be read in annual festival produced by the Student Organization of Undergraduate Playwrights.

One week before the Division of Theater’s graduate playwrights close the main stage season with the Seabury Quinn Jr. Playwrights’ Festival, the undergraduate playwrights are holding a festival of their own.

The Student Organization of Undergraduate Playwrights is producing its Undergraduate Playwrights Festival on Friday and Saturday at 7 p.m. in Kantner Hall Room 308. The festival is free and open to all.

Three underclassmen in the undergraduate playwriting program will present their 10-minute plays and the three senior undergraduate playwriting students will present readings of their thesis projects.

The three 10-minute plays will open the festival Friday and, after an intermission, one of the senior thesis plays will be read. The other two senior thesis plays will be read Saturday with an intermission in between.

Brayden Frascone, a sophomore studying playwriting and the multimedia manager of SOUP, is one of the undergraduates who wrote a 10-minute play for the festival. Although they could have chosen to stage previous work from the school year, Frascone said all three underclassmen chose to write new plays in the last month for the festival.

Frascone said the festival is the fourth show SOUP has presented this year, but the first not to be themed.

“Whatever we’ve been working on, whatever interests us, that is what we can write for the show,” he said. “It’s just a little bit more freedom.”

Jessica Walters, co-president of SOUP and a senior studying playwriting, said the festival will showcase a wide selection of material and genres.

Walters describes her play The Saints of Sherwood Lake — which will be read Saturday — as a dark comedy with aspects of horror. She said the seniors have been working on their plays since October.

All shows will feature actors reading from scripts without costumes or set design. Only the 10-minute shows will have minimal blocking.

Frascone said the format takes away the formality of a main stage show.

“It’s more focused on the writing than anything else,” Frascone said. “Just so people have a chance to really interpret the writing that we do.”

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Walters said the festival is more like reader's theater.

“It’s a lot more intimate and a lot more laid back,” she said.

Walters also said the festival is a great experience theater for free, even for people who aren’t very interested in it.

“You can go to a play … and it might be by Shakespeare or somebody you’ve never heard of and you don’t understand it and what’s the point and blah blah blah,” she said. “But I feel like with the (Undergraduate) Playwrights Festival ... you get to hear what your peers have to say. You know, you get to see the ... kind of art people your age are creating, people at your college are creating.”

@erindavoran

ed414911@ohio.edu

 

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