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February 13, 2009
Vol. 50 No. 15

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Seniors step into directors' shoes for festival

Courtesy of The Crusader/Abbi Mull
ACT OUT-- Sophomores Emily Mattison (left) and Shayna Freed (right) rehearse for the 11th annual student-directed "One Act Play Festival." Performances are Feb. 13 and 14 at 8 p.m. and Feb. 15 at 2:30 p.m.
Susquehanna presented the 11th annual student-directed "One Act Play Festival" beginning last night at 8.

The festival will be performed in the Degenstein Theater throughout the weekend. The shows will continue today and Saturday, Feb. 14 at 8 p.m. There will also be a show on Sunday, Feb 15 at 2:30 p.m.

According to a press release from the Department of Theater, "The 'One Act Play Festival' allows the most proficient and dedicated Susquehanna University theater students to direct, design, act and manage challenging works from the canon of dramatic literature."

The festival will include seven performances directed by theater students, all of whom are seniors at Susquehanna.

In addition, one screenplay was created by senior writing student, Charlie Riccardelli. His play, "Sacrament of Reconciliation," is about the tension in a parent/teacher meeting between a priest and the mother of a student, who happens to be the woman he left in order to become a man of God, Riccardelli said.

According to sophomore Laura Luc, this is the first play written by a Susquehanna student to be performed in the "One Act Play Festival" production.

"Sacrament of Reconciliation" will be directed by Kenneth Goodwin. The cast includes senior Brian Grier, who plays Father Al LeProtto, and sophomore Brianna Roth, who plays Sherry Cassel.

Other plays in the festival include: "Date with a Stranger," written by Cherie Vogelstein and directed by Clayre Waltman; "Ferryboat," written by Anna Marie Barlow and directed by Julie Ek; "Summer at the Lake," written by Tennessee Williams and directed by Melinda Gulick; "Botticelli," written by Terrence McNally and directed by Chris Payseur; "American Modern," written by Joanna M. Glass and directed by Matthew Prince; and "Imagining Brad," written by Peter Hedges and directed by John O'Conner.

Waltman said, "The all-encompassing theme of this year is 'Mosaics,' which was provided by our set designer Ashley Harman, who had to create a space for seven very unique plays."

She said that all the directors work together throughout the entire festival process.

"Our work is a lot of collaboration. We all have a say and, luckily, we also have some wonderful and extremely creative people," Waltman added.

She said the festival is a great place for student directors to showcase their hard work and encouraged students to attend.

"This production is the only completely student-run event in the theatre department. We work and manifest this project as professionals. This is student talent at its best; each department within the production has the opportunity to shine," Waltman said.
Waltman's production, "Date with a Stranger," is about two people who meet in a Manhattan diner and spark a "fantastical romance from beginning to end," Luc said.

Admission to the festival is free to Susquehanna students and additional tickets will cost $10 for adults and $8 for non-Susquehanna students.

Tickets can be purchased at the Degenstein Box Office or at the door prior the start of the show.

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