Mark your calendars, folks – the 2015 Quade One Act Festival is coming up! This annual event features one-act plays directed by Artist in Residence Gary Gisselman’s intermediate directing class and will be held May 7-9 in Haugen Theater. There are four shows each night, with the festivities starting at 7 p.m. every evening. No show will run longer than 30 minutes, and each night’s shows will run consecutively.
We know you are excited to attend and appreciate the hard work of up-and-coming student directors and actors, so to help build this excitement, the Messenger is proud to bring you a preview of all 12 shows. Here is what you can expect this year, along with remarks from each director:
Private Lives, 7:00 p.m.
Directed by Stacie Argyrou ’16
Starring: Sean Pruett-Jones ’18, Ash Willison ’17, Nolan Bedward ’17 and Christa Schmidt ’16
“Private Lives, a deceptively simple play, is the story of a once married to each other – now divorced – pair, Amanda and Elyot, who, in search for love with their new spouses, find themselves sharing a terrace in a hotel in France. Soon after they see each other, they discover that their life actually constitutes to a newly liberated world, in which indulgence, fantasy and decadence combine to create an uncertain, yet desirable future for the both of them, together.”
Middletown, 7:30 p.m.
Directed by Dominic Bower ’16
Starring: Seton FitzMacken ’17, Katya Vorokhobova ’18, Leidy Rogers ’18, Shannon Cron ’15, Siimon Sander ’18 and Elijah Verdoorn ’18
“Middletown is a play by Will Eno that follows the lives of not-so-ordinary tolkfown as they navigate the cycles of life and death.”
And They Danced Real Slow in Jackson, 8:00 p.m.
Directed by Taylor Heitman ’16
Starring: Rosie Linsner ’18, Becca Thavis ’17, Gabe Coleman ’17, Max Anderson ’15, Maddie Sabin ’17, Ian Sutherland ’18 and Jill Luoma-Overstreet ’16
“This play is about a girl who has struggled with polio her entire life in the 1940s. A mashup of memories about how she, and others, have handled her disability, this is a beautiful story about overcoming inner demons, or how they can overtake you.”
The Fire in Our Hearts: Scenes from War, 8:30 p.m.
Directed by Becky Raines ’16
Starring: Cameron Jackson ’17, Amy Trunt ’17, Yiwen Wu ’17, Denzel Belin ’15, Katie Johns ’15 and Emery Rankin-Utevsky ’18.
“My one act showcases scenes from three different plays, spanning Greek and Roman times to modern day war. I chose these scenes because I’m interested in how the way we think about war has and hasn’t changed. I think each scene provides a different and engaging perspective to the humanity of war.”
Romeo and Juliet, 7:00 p.m.
Directed by Emily Field-Olson ’16.
Starring: Zach Greimann ’15 and Maggie Noun ’17
“Romeo and Juliet is, of course, the story of two doomed lovers but I think it’s also a story about the dangers of hate. I wanted to do selections from this play because, although it’s 400 years old, I think the beauty and danger of the story is still relevant in 2015.”
Red, 7:30 p.m.
Directed by Erin Kerrigan ’16
Starring: Matt Stai ’18 and Preston West ’16
“This historically influenced play by John Logan centers on Mark Rothko, an abstract expressionist painter, and his interactions with his assistant Ken. Logan has dramatized the life of Rothko during his career in the late 60s to create a piece that places the changing art world in conversation with an artist’s struggle to feel relevant, to maintain passion and to fight the infringement of despair and commercialism in his work. I chose Logan’s play because it speaks beautifully to the questions of ‘What is art?’ and ‘Who decides what art is?’ as well as what it means to foster and to be challenged by the next generation of artists.”
Proof, 8:00 p.m.
Directed by Tara Schaefle ’16.
Starring: Grace Brandt ’17, Bess Clement ’18, Will Ibele ’18 and Chaz Mayo ’18
“I will be directing Proof by David Auburn, a show that is near and dear to my heart for many reasons and has also won the Pulitzer Prize and Tony awards. Proof tells the story of Catherine, the daughter of a recently deceased mathematical prodigy whose mind unraveled in his final years. In the wake of her father’s death, Catherine struggles through her relationships with Hal and estranged sister Claire to prove the fine line between the genius and insanity of her father and, in turn, herself. I first encountered Proof when I was in a production of it a few years ago, and that marked a turning point in my life when I decided that acting was something I wanted to pursue professionally. The script is sarcastic, brave and truly poignant, and I hope the audience will fall in love with it as much as I have.”
Once and for All We’re Going To Tell You Who We Are So Shut Up and Listen, 8:30 p.m.
Directed by Memo Rodriguez ’16
Starring: Abby Sunberg ’18, Lily Bane ’17, Josiah Beretta ’18, Bailey Williams ’16, Shelby Reddig ’17, Leah Voigt ’15 and Christine Menge ’18
“This show is a thirty minute celebration of raw energy.”
An Adult Evening of Shel Silverstein, 7:00 p.m.
Directed by Emma Downey ’16
Starring: Tom Reuter ’17, Gabby Dominique ’17, Payne McMillan ’15, Charlotte Smith ’18 and David Knott ’18
“This one act welcomes audience members into the darkly comic world of Shel Silverstein, a world where nothing is as it seems and where the familiar is distorted. Shel Silverstein’s short plays and poetry are the foundations for this playfully disturbing show.”
Does This Woman Have a Name? 7:30 p.m.
Directed by Francesco D’Aniello ’16
Starring: Katie Hindman ’15, Kathryn Ravey ’16 and Jordan Solei ’15
“Does This Woman Have a Name? by Theresa Rebeck is a play about jealousy, stigma and independence. The play follows two women, Mel and Sarah, who, out of necessity, have begun to operate a phone sex hotline. As they become more comfortable with their new jobs, Mel’s new boyfriend becomes increasingly uncomfortable with it.”
Twilight of the Golds, 8:00 p.m.
Directed by Olivia Mansfield ’15
Starring: Joey LeBrun ’15, Ben Pelegano ’15, Erica Loon ’15, Casey Bouldin ’15 and David Gottfried ’15
“I chose this play because I am interested in the use of theater to ask important questions about the society that we live in, and because I was drawn to the complexity of each of the characters. It’s about a family who has to make a very tough decision, and in doing that, I hope the audience members start to question their own beliefs and can empathize with the characters. Enjoy the show!”
Shades of Grey, 8:30 p.m.
Directed by Dylan Stratton ’16
Starring: Max McKune ’18, Anders Wahlberg ’17 and Alyeska Dellinger ’18
“This play, which has no relation to 50 Shades of Grey, was written by Meg Haley ’06 for an Austin 10-minute play festival. The script is a little unconventional and is reminiscent of Waiting for Godot by Samuel Beckett. The basic plot is a father trying to remember his wife and a son trying to remember his mother. The father and son meet at a bench in a garden in the middle of winter. The script itself is too short to stand on its own, so I have collaborated with the actors to devise a section before the script begins. The devised section introduces the mother to the audience and is composed of poetry and other text.”
Graphic Credit: ETHAN BOOTE/MANITOU MESSENGER