Fremont, Calif., April 29, 2021—The Ohlone College Department of Theatre and Dance presents the seventh annual Playwrights Festival on May 14th and 15th at 7 p.m. online. The Playwrights Festival premieres thought-provoking, humorous, and entertaining 10-minute plays and musicals written by professional and emerging playwrights and composers around the country. Some of the themes explored in this year’s plays deal with attraction, friendship, family, creativity, self-awareness, change, greed, the environment, guilt, racism, and accountability.
“We started this festival to promote and cultivate new plays that will engage and speak directly to a younger audience. It’s great to see a strong interest in this endeavor,” says Michael Navarra, the Producing Director of the festival and Ohlone College faculty member. “It’s an exciting production and sells out each year receiving rave reviews.”
Many of the playwrights and composers have been published and have had their work produced Off Broadway and at regional theatres, such as Berkeley Repertory Theatre, San Francisco Playhouse, San Diego Repertory Theatre, Marin Theatre Company, La Mama, Geva Theatre Center, Ensemble Studio Theatre, Manhattan Theatre Source, The Flea Theater, Actors Theatre of Louisville, The Eugene O’Neill Theatre Center, and Metropolitan Playhouse. This year the festival will include two Ohlone student playwrights and composers, David Kautz and Manase Misa, who are also directing and acting in the company. Student Repertory Theatre Company, a class of student directors, producers, actors, and designers at Ohlone, is producing the Ohlone Playwrights Festival.
The festival was inspired by the need to create original material to engage college students and audiences and to reconnect this demographic with live theatre. The Playwrights Festival asks playwrights to write directly for the student actors and directors in the class. They are sent videos of their actors being interviewed by the directors, along with several themes that the students were interested in. The playwrights then had a month to write their plays with these student actors and themes in mind.
The selected plays and musicals are:
- The Bojiff Dodang Show by David Kautz (Book, Music and Lyrics) and Nick Saud (Music and Lyrics); Directed by: Haiden Grushkin
- Lola Cooked Our Food by Jeffrey Lo; Directed by: Sarah Elizondo
- Opposites Attract by Manase Misa; Directed by: Lilian Mangrobang
- Mess by Philana Imade Omorotionmwan; Directed by: Manuel Muñoz
- To The North Star by Jordan Ramirez Puckett; Directed by: Manase Misa
- Slaying Demons by Jacob Marx Rice; Directed by: Leah Robertson
- Hopes and Dreams Incorporated by Mercedes Segesvary; Directed by: Gillian Bong
- MI6 Budget Report by Max Tachis; Directed by: Rebecca Twyman
- Enemy by Peter Tamaribuchi; Directed by: Yorick Moran
For more information visit: www.ohlone.edu/playwrights