Fremont, CA—The Ohlone College Playwrights Festival is back for its fourth year, showcasing the world premieres of thought-provoking, humorous, and entertaining 10-minute plays written by professional and emerging playwrights around the country. Presented by the award-winning Ohlone College Department of Theatre and Dance, this exciting selection of comedic and dramatic plays explore topics oriented toward college students and general audiences. Some of the themes explored in this year’s plays deal with human connection, self-acceptance, freedom of speech and expression, loneliness, hope, ignorance, following your dreams, and appreciation of life’s gifts.
Many of the playwrights have been published and have had their work produced Off Broadway and at regional theatres, such as The Public Theatre, New York Theatre Workshop, Playwrights Horizons, Ma-Yi Theatre Company, The Lark, La Mama, Actors Theatre of Louisville, Eugene O’Neill Theatre Center, Berkeley Repertory Theatre, Goodman Theatre, Magic Theatre, San Francisco Mime Troupe, San Francisco Playhouse, and have written for film and TV, such as This Is Us, The Good Fight, and the 20th Century Fox film Ferdinand. In addition, this year the festival will include two Ohlone student playwrights, Kayla Martinez and Nick Saud, who are also directing and acting in this student run theatre company. The Student Repertory Theatre Company, a class of student directors, producers, actors, and designers at Ohlone, is producing the festival.
The festival was inspired by the need to create original material to engage college students and audiences and to reconnect the student demographic with live theatre. For this year’s festival, the student playwrights were invited to write directly for the student actors and directors in the class. They were 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.
Receiving rave reviews from Ohlone students and local audiences, the festival has sold out the last three years. Michael Navarra, the Producing Director of the festival and Ohlone College faculty member, commented on this success, “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.”
The selected plays are:
- TDS by Aurin Squire
- Dance! by Ron Burch
- Peregrine, the Artist by Eugenie Chan
- On The Edge by Jeffrey Lo
- The Idiots Who Gave Me Reasons to Live by Kayla Martinez
- The Some (Body) Shop by Philana Omorotionmwan
- Is There Any Place Lonelier… by Jordan Ramirez Puckett
- Beans by Jacob Marx Rice
- Sick to the Stomach by Nick Saud
- Forfeiture by Mercedes Segesvary
The festival takes place on May 3 and 4, 2018 at 8:00pm. All ten of the plays will be performed both nights. The performances are at the Smith Center at Ohlone College, 43600 Mission Blvd, Fremont, CA 94539. Tickets are $10 and may be purchased online at SmithCenter.com, by calling the box office at (510) 659-6031, or at the door.
About the Ohlone College Playwrights Festival
The festival cultivates plays and playwrights that speak to college students and contribute to fostering the next generation of theatre artists.
About Student Repertory Theatre Company
Student Repertory Theatre Company is a class that produces the Ohlone College Playwrights Festival. Student Rep is comprised of student directors, producers, actors, designers, and crew. First-time and more experienced theatre students are given the opportunity to create a full theatre ensemble geared toward producing live theatre. Student Rep introduces all aspects of theatre to new students and provides an opportunity for experienced students to polish their skills and craft. Please contact Michael Navarra at MNavarraSmith@ohlone.edu for more information about the festival.