Thursday April 7 through Sunday April 10, collegiate thespians will be taking the stage, for Marietta College’s annual One-Acts Festival. Located at the Hermann Fine Arts Center, the Festival will be open and free to all interested in attending.
Sawyer Shafer, a sophomore theater major, is directing “Land of the Dead” by Helter Skelter, a play that centers on the topic of abortion.
“There’s a lot that people will not expect, and I think that’s what makes the show worth seeing,” Shafer said. “It’s very real, I think that’s the best way to describe it.”
This is Shafer’s first year directing for the festival and he has enjoyed the experience.
“One of my favorite things was seeing everyone come in for auditions, because you could tell who was uncertain but very passionate… You saw all of these personalities come together in this room for auditions and it was really intriguing,” Shafer said.
“The Game” by Louise Bryant is another play that will be featured in the festival. Directed by junior Kat Watkins, this 1916 morality play personifies the concept of death. The character, Death, will be played by senior theatre major, Morgan Massaro.
“Despite the fact that it’s about an existential crisis, it is pretty funny,” Massaro said, adding that Watkins has taken a unique approach to the 100 year-old play.
“It’s a really interesting take on life, because it makes a lot of comments on what we think about life and what we think about death. Personifying those elements is kind of this neat little juxtaposition to compare the two,” Massaro said.
Junior English major Emily Stainbrook will be playing the character, Girl. She says that, while The Game is normally performed as a comedy, Watkins’ take is more “theatre of cruelty, slightly absurdist theatre.”
“You won’t find a recording like this on YouTube,” Stainbrook said.
Five different plays will be featured during the festival. Shafer says there will be a variety of styles represented,something for everyone to enjoy.
“We all have very different niches, as to how we direct and what kind of directors and what kinds of plays we use,” Shafer said. “Going into this, it’s much more diverse than I anticipated, and that’s not a bad thing at all.”
Additionally, students from a variety of majors will be participating.
“We’ve got psych majors, comm. majors, poli-sci. majors, and the SGA president – all kinds. Everybody’s coming out of the woodwork,” Shafer explained.
Massaro is also excited to work with a diverse group of students.
“Getting to see new sides of people, and getting to see them kind of bloom a little bit in a way that theater does to people is really awesome.”
The shows are dived into two programs, “A” and “B”. Program A will run Thursday at 8 p.m., Saturday at 8 p.m. and Sunday at 2 p.m. Program B will be performed Friday at 8 p.m., Saturday at 2p.m., and Sunday at 7 p.m.