Auditions were held on Monday, Dec. 1 and Tuesday, Dec. 2 for Lane’s winter term Playwright’s Showcase. Five short plays, written by current and former Lane Community College students, will be featured in the showcase to be held Feb. 12-15 in the Blue Door Theatre. The plays include:
“Therapist for a Day” — playwright: Aaron Smart, director: Philip Hawkins; “Coked Up Brothers” — playwright: David Trussell, director: Aaron Smart; “Invincible Sword Locking Technique” — playwright: Tim O’Donnell, director: Taylor Freeman; “Goodnight Amanda” — playwright: Penny Scott – director: Eric Osborn; fifth play — yet to be determined.
There are a total of 15 parts for the five plays. Actors will be cast from 22 people who auditioned. The directors, in collaboration with the playwrights, have the task of casting the actors based both on acting ability and them being the right types for the parts.
“It was great to see the talent our school and community had to offer,” Philip Hawkins director of Therapist for a Day said. “I’m looking forward to working with them.”
Most people who auditioned were asked to read from several of the scripts and were usually asked to read a second or third time. They were asked to give different emphasis in their acting according to criteria such as the characters’ circumstance and relationship to other characters.
Four students will comprise the production staff for the performances under the direction of stage manager, Rhodec Erickson. Three students will be in charge of lighting and the other, sound. There will be three set changes required on the night of the showcase; three of the plays are set in living rooms, one in an office and one in a railway car.
“Each play will have a different lighting designer and a different set designer,” Erickson said, “It’s my job to make sure that they work with each other, because we’re not going to move the sets in and out, it’s going to be one set. And because we can’t move lights in the middle of a show.”
Erickson learned production and stage management skills at Lane. He has been applying what he learned at the Wildish Theatre in Springfield, where he has been working for the last three years.
The plays are expected to be fully cast within two weeks of the auditions. Rehearsals will start at the beginning of winter term.
“I thought that auditions went really well,” playwright and director Aaron Smart said. “A lot of talented people came out to auditions. I’m really looking forward to the rest of the process.”
An Acting Showcase will be held at the Blue Door Theatre on Saturday, Dec. 6 at 7:00 p.m. Each of the plays will be read either by students from current Lane acting classes or, in some cases, by those already cast in the roles.
All students and community members are welcome to attend the free event. Audience members will be invited to give feedback on scripts. Even though the scripts are complete, possible rewrites may continue until January 21, 2015.
Editor’s note: Torch Editor-in-Chief Penny Scott is the author of one of the plays.