New Works Festival showcases student playwrights
Published: Wednesday, February 20, 2013
Updated: Wednesday, February 20, 2013 02:02
From actors and directors to designers and playwrights, the Student New Works Festival exists to showcase Aggie talent and to give theatre arts students the chance to live a dream.
The fourth annual festival – this year from Feb. 20 to Feb. 23 – has given theatre arts majors and minors a complete, hands-on experience as theater professionals. The students do it all, with the faculty serving an advisory role.
Tori Dominguez, senior theatre arts major and playwright of “The Persistence of Memory” said her experience writing the play that is showcased in the festival was amazing, yet humbling.
“My piece is about my own personal experience with death and grief,” Dominguez said. “The script came from entries from my own journal, so it’s relieving, but also makes me feel a bit vulnerable.”
Dominguez, along with five other playwrights, had her work chosen out of proposals sent to the theatre arts program season committee.
“Students submit proposals, including a design presentation and a written abstract,” said Amy Guerin, instructional assistant professor in the Department of Performance Studies. “The theatre program season committee, with three faculty members and one student member, reviews the proposals and decides which proposals to accept.”
From surrealism to satire, various genres will be presented through the pieces showcased in the event.
The five plays include “Henderson” by Emily Sturrock, senior English major and lifestyles writer for The Battalion; “Slant” by Citally Jimenez and senior English major Esmeralda Rodriguez; “The Persistence of Memory” by Dominguez; “What Are You Really?”by Justin Fullerton; and “When I Grow Up” by senior agricultural communications and journalism major Josh Hardcastle.
Madison O’Brien, production stage manager and senior theatre arts major said the festival is a great learning experience for students, providing them with valuable insight into the world of production.
“I love the challenge that New Works poses to all of the students involved in creating new art and experimenting and trying new things in an accepting environment,” O’Brien said. “This environment not only allows everyone involved to learn from one another and the art they are creating, but invites the audience into this experiment as well.”
Dominguez said the festival allows people to experiment with their creativity, no matter their professional level or prior experience to play production.
“It shows that it doesn’t matter who you are — whether you’re a professional actor, writer or director — you can be creative too,” Dominguez said. “I hope students that come to the festival see that they can be creative as well.”