This weekend I had the pleasure of taking in the entirety of the New Plays Festival, put on each spring by the departments of English and theatre and a collection of young writers and actors. I was involved in several of the plays this year, directing one and acting in two others. But as always I was astonished by the level of talent and insight that Wheaton’s budding playwrights have to offer us.
I am currently in Charlotte Meehan’s introductory playwriting class, and I can tell you firsthand that playwriting is no walk in the park. The Advanced Playwriting students of last semester poured their hearts and souls into these pieces, and it was evident in the results as performed onstage this weekend in the Kresge Experimental Theater.
What I find so fascinating about these plays is how relatable they are. This year’s were not particularly abstracted, they were slices of life and had important messages about the lives that we ourselves live everyday.
As evidenced by the rainbow thumbprint on this year’s poster, many of the shows dealt with sexuality and identity. But the portrayal of 21st century relationships was so incredibly relevant that not one college-age individual in the audience could fail to identify with at least some element of these plays, from insecurity about exciting new relationships to the impersonalness (or perhaps the opposite) of relationships founded online.
The plays addressed these issues and more, and the festival was a testament to the creativity of Wheaton students. It reminded me of the delight I take in viewing student performances, and it gave us all a much needed reprieve in the midst of what has become a very stressful semester, enhanced by the snow. Thank goodness spring break is here.
Due to the break, this is the last print issue of the Wire until Mar. 25. But until then, keep an eye out for some exclusively online content. We’ll be updating wheatonwire.com with more photo content soon, too.
Meanwhile, wherever you’re going — warm or cold — have a wonderful spring break and come back ready and rarin’ to go for the best months of the year at Wheaton. Spring is just around the corner!
Categories: From the Editor