CN One Act Plays hero 1920pxNueva’s First Annual One-Act Play Festival showcased two dramas that were written, directed, acted, and produced entirely by students. Eleventh grader Justin S. and tenth grader Louis B. each wrote a play last year for their Quest projects, and then this year expanded their Quest projects to include staging their work.

“It was really cool to be part of a completely student-run production at school where all the directing and writing and acting and lights and sound was done by students,” said eleventh grader Ishani G., who acted in both plays. “There was a freedom that came with being able to put it on yourself and knowing that the others who are running the show are also students.”

The idea to stage the One Acts originated with eleventh-grade student Sinead C. who produced the shows this year for her Quest project. “I read Justin’s play about a year ago and thought this is too good; we have to put it on. I want everyone to see this!” said Sinead. “I talked to Justin and thought it’d be really cool to showcase student work and to start a tradition of one-act plays.”

CN One Act Plays imbed 500pxThe first play, “Live from Mars,” was written by Louis B. and opens on Day 19 of the first human colony on Mars, a momentous experience being broadcast back to Earth as a reality television show. The play depicts the challenges two families face as they adjust to their new life on the red planet and deal with cameras constantly filming their every minute. The play explores society’s fascination with reality television as well as the resilient human spirit under extreme circumstances.

“My initial idea for the play came about when I found an article about a reality show depicting the first colony on Mars, and I knew that this idea would work perfectly as a premise of a play,” said Louis. “Since this was my first attempt at directing, it was quite challenging but incredibly rewarding at the end. I'm so glad people saw the value in the message I put forth.”

The second play, titled “Political Babble,” was written by Justin S. and is a political satire in response to the Obama administration’s deadlock with Congress in his second term of office. The play follows the American president and various other politicians as they scramble to respond to an alien invasion while jockeying with their colleagues for more political power — and their preferred seats at the State Dinner.

“This was my first time directing, and it was one of the most stressful and gratifying things I have ever done,” said Justin. “I was surprised how much work it is, and the minutiae of the behind-the-scenes work is insane. But when I was sitting down watching my play, it felt amazing.”

“It’s so much harder to do something that hasn’t been done before, but it’s also really cool to start a new program,” said Sinead. “The school was super supportive and completely open to it. Even if I’m not super involved in One-Acts again, I’d like to make this happen again next year.”

Justin and Louis both plan to participate in the One-Acts Festival again and want more students to participate through writing and directing their own plays.

“It's amazing what a couple of kids can put together with dedicated time and resources,” said Zoe L., eleventh grader and stage manager for both plays. “It has been really amazing to be in a community that encourages student projects, especially because of how many awesome ideas my peers have.”


 March 24, 2017



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