Spring Theatre showcases local teen playwrights
The Spring Theatre will present the world premiere of a pair one-act plays on July 28 and July 29 at the Mountcastle Theatre in downtown Winston-Salem.
What makes this presentation even more special is that both playwrights are local teenagers. Grace Reasoner, the author of Conversations, is 16 years old and will be attending Reagan High School in Pfafftown in the fall. Abby Powell, who penned Make A Wish, is 13 years old and will attend Forsyth Early College in Winston-Salem this fall.
In an official statement, Erinn Diaz, the founder and artistic director of Spring Theatre, explained: “When I was young, I dreamed of writing my own productions and having them produced. In doing some research for picking our season this year, I was surprised that there were no other theater companies in the Triad giving teens the opportunity to see their work on stage in a professional environment. So, we put out a call for submissions and were pleasantly surprised at the shows that came our way! Two of them made the final cut, and we hope to produce many more student-written world-premiere productions in the future.”
Reasoner’s Conversations is a humorous coming-of-age comedy about friendship, following five sets of friends at different points in their lives and how their relationships have changed over time. Reasoner said, “It’s a play that studies the human condition and observes what we have all learned as individual human beings, as well as connected people, throughout life.”
Howell’s Make A Wish puts a fresh, farcical spin on fairy tales. The main characters are Iris, your prototypical fairy-tale princess, and Mia, one of her servants. When the sorceress Furta overhears each girl wishing for a different path in life, she casts a magical spell which causes them to switch bodies. This instance proves to be especially problematic when the wicked sorcerer Porcorum makes his nefarious bid to take the kingdom for his own, while also forcing both Iris and Mia to re-examine their priorities and their positions in life.
Each playwright will also direct her own play, with Diaz serving as set designer for both productions. Mike Orsillo handles lighting coordination, Katie Ballard is the costume designer, and Trinity Wenzel Wertheim will be stage manager for the presentation.
Not unlike a repertory theater, each production will feature the same actors (in different roles, of course). Indeed, Howell will be appearing in Conversations (as the character Brooke) and Make A Wish (as Furta), Reasoner in Make A Wish (as the servant girl Mia).
The other cast members for Conversations and Make A Wish include Haven Barrier, Travon Carter, Amanda Cole, Zachary Cotter, Blaine Freeman, Chloe Greer, Bella Hart-Peck, Jason Howell, Lizzie Howell, Caleigh Mattern, Caroline Rowell, Ethan Talbott and Chase Whitehurst.
The Spring Theatre’s world-premiere productions of Grace Reasoner’s Conversations and Abby Howell’s Make A Wish will be presented 7 p.m. July 28, 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. July 29 at the Mountcastle Theatre, 251 N. Spruce St., Winston-Salem. Tickets are $12. For tickets or more information, call 336.747.1414 or visit http://www.rhodesartscenter.org/make-a-wish-conversations/.
The official Spring Theatre website is http://springtheatre.org/index.html.
Mark Burger can be heard Friday mornings on the “Two Guys Named Chris” radio show on Rock-92. © 2017, Mark Burger.