We’ve often heard the phrase “less is more” used to describe everything from flavoring a cake to writing an English essay. But could the old adage also be true in the theater? The BT Theatrical Alliance set out to prove this saying correct in their latest dramatic endeavor, the Ten-Minute Play Festival. To be performed on November 15th, this collection of short and sweet performances is surely not to be missed.
“The ten minute plays are definitely a great way to start out in BTTA,” said junior Laura Rodriguez, who has been active in the BT theater and dance programs since her freshman year. “It’s not a huge time commitment, so you can really get a feel for the atmosphere to see whether you like it or not. BTTA is a lot of fun and a great way to make friends.” With a cast of 34 total parts, the festival is clearly a popular event among the thespian community.
One aspect of the plays that sets them apart from any other BTTA performance is that every one of the nine plays was written by a member of the BT community, whether by Mr. Allan Dodson, head of the drama department, Amanda Skorcz, an aspiring freshman playwright, or by Mr. Frank Moore himself!
Grace Nemec, a sophomore who not only cowrote a play with Amanda but will also be performing in an entirely separate one, is excited to watch her masterpiece come to life onstage. “This was the first play I’d ever taken part in writing, but I’ve always liked to dabble with stories and stuff. I’ve always enjoyed writing, whether it be an essay (on certain days) or just a little blurb. Having my play chosen for the Festival is an amazing experience, not only for the obvious reasons of creating something worthy of being performed, but also because of how much I’ve learned along the way,” said Grace.
In addition to being written and performed by BT students, many of the plays are also directed by upperclassmen. Junior Lillian Shoji, senior Jack Brinsmaid, and senior Evan Hussey, among others, will be shouldering the task of managing their fellow students in one play as well as pulling off the perfect performance in another.
Lillian Shoji, for example, will be directing “Family” by Frank Moore and portraying Death in Norman Francis’ The Company, in addition to having written her own play, “Welcome to Life.” As an extremely experienced actor and accredited playwright himself, Mr. Dodson understands Lillian’s situation. “It’s a nerve-wracking experience seeing your play staged. It’s also very important in developing an understanding of the collaborative nature of theatre. Quite often, a director’s interpretation is different from the playwrights, and the results can be electric. It’s a lot of scary fun,” said Mr. Dodson.
As a first-time playwright, junior Norman Francis couldn’t be more excited to revel in his ten minutes of fame. “My play has only two characters, Rory and August,” he said. “Rory’s a girl who’s around 17 years old who runs away from home. Saying anything else would ruin the story, so come see the play!”
Come out to witness the BT Theatrical Alliance’s second major event of the year this weekend in the theater, and don’t miss the winter show in January, in which students will be performing short plays by some of the greatest American playwrights!