Three weeks’ worth of casting, writing, rehearsing and more will be condensed into 24 hours for Drama Ensemble’s first ever 24 hour play festival.
From 1:15pm on April 17 to 1:15 pm on April 18, nine teams formed of Drama Ensemble members, students from any grade, and students invited from other schools will have to use their time wisely to write a piece, cast actors, set up lights and stage designs, gather costume and props, and rehearse, all to be set to perform their 10 minute long piece in Intimate Theater at 2 pm on April 18.
After some scheduling trouble with Coachella, Anne “Coach” Scarbrough, Drama Ensemble instructor and head of the performing arts department, said that she’s excited to finally have her students participate in a 24 hour play festival.
“Everything came together this year to say ‘we can do that this year’,” Scarbrough said.
Students from any grade are able to sign-up, not only as actresses, but as writers, set designers, and more. They will then be placed into one of the nine teams. The teams, each led by a senior in Drama Ensemble, will draw a general theme /genre for their piece from a hat, as well as a specific prop that needs to be used and/or a specific line that needs to be said. The participants will then have a choice of many rooms on campus including the art rooms, and C220 that will be the teams’ headquarters.
As it will be an overnight stay on campus, faculty members will be helping out as chaperons for the festival. Scarbrough said that there is no curfew for the teams and that there are surprises planned for the night such as last-minute rules.
The festival will replace the traditional Senior Shorts this year as the final Drama Ensemble senior-directed project due to past conflicts, including seniors being busy this time of year and not having many students willing to dedicate 3 weeks to rehearsal, Scarbrough said.
Also, having participated in a 24 hour play festival herself, Scarbrough said she wants her students to learn the same lesson she learned.
“Rather than waiting around for the perfect choice, I learned to take a good choice and bring it to fruition — make it the best it could be,” Scarbrough said.
Scarbrough also hopes that with only 24 hours and no chance to plan ahead, the stress load will go down.
Drama Ensemble member Karen ’09, is looking forward to “going into it blind” as well as the casting process.
“It’ll be really fun to be on the opposite end of the casting,” Karen said.
Depending on student and faculty feedback as well as student participation, the festival might become an annual event, but for now, it is a new performance that will put the senior directors to the test.