I want to give a big shout out to Owensboro High School and the Rose Curtain Players. Not only did they win first place at the Southeastern Theatre Conference with my play Among Friends and Clutter, but their director Carolyn Green was named best director.
I’ve said this before, but it just thrills me to the core to have Among find an audience. It was my first official play, written over twenty years ago. For it to still hit home means so much to me as a playwright. It means the play is perfect in a weird way (because I know technically it’s not) because it continues to have a life long after the era it was written in. It renews itself, which I think is the goal of any writer. We want our words to live on.
But wait there’s more. I also want to give a shout out to Owensboro Middle School who took my show The Snow Show to the 2013 Junior Thespian festival in Georgia earlier this month. There are some great pics on the Educational Theatre Association site.
Jessica Stafford, the middle school director, shared with me how her students really came together as a group to work on The Snow Show. As a playwright, this is another mission of mine. Theatre should be an experience, and I want to do what I can to provide that experience for students. I have found at the school level it doesn’t matter what the play is, the actors can grow, learn, and change just from the act of working on a piece. My light plays accomplish that just as much as my dark and meaningful plays. I love knowing that. It’s another big reason why I write, to be able to play a small part in the experience, in the memories that are made.
Among Friends and The Snow Show are quite different and yet very similar. They are both vignette plays, they both focus on small scenes. Among Friends has some more in-depth character work but I think The Snow Show for a light silly play about snow has some of my best writing. The snow angel monologue and “Remember the Burrito!” are my favourite moments.
I am so intensely proud of both these shows and these schools. Thank you both for making my words come to life. Thank you for making me who I am.