Welcome to our Featured Play Spotlight. In the high school dramedy, Thought Traps by Lindsay Price, even happy people have issues. Will they be able to set themselves free from the past who invade their thoughts?
Ariane walks around with her own personal black cloud. She throws up barriers, lashes out and refuses to tell anyone what she’s thinking.
Kate is the exact opposite. Happy, bubbly, outgoing and personable.
But even happy people have issues. And there are more similarities between the two teens: both Ariane and Kate deal with people from their past who invade their head space, and pull them into thought traps. Will either be able to set themselves free?
We love the story of the characters so much that the question came up – can we adapt their story into a non-musical one act? The answer is yes! Although, it wasn’t a simple copy & paste. In musicals, characters express their thoughts and emotions through song. In Thought Traps songs have to become conversations, or even new characters. The adaptation was a challenge but an extremely worthwhile one.
The great thing about adaptation is that we can also adapt to the present times – the original story was written fifteen years ago and many things have changed. The characters in Thought Traps are living fully in today’s world. For example, gender identity is an important conversation in the play and the language characters use to express themselves is grounded in the now.
We love being able to offer another option for these characters and this story.
Let’s hear from the author!
1. Why did you write this play?
The story of Ariane and Kate exits in another form at theatrefolk.com; in our a capella musical, Shout. I love their story and decided to see if I could turn it into a non-musical one act. A great challenge and a satisfying one – songs in which characters expressed their thoughts had to be turned into dialogue, and in some cases all new characters! The title Thought Traps came directly out of this new writing.
2. Describe the theme in one or two sentences.
Ariane and Kate deal with people from their past who invade their head space. Will either be able to set themselves free?
3. What’s the most important visual for you in this play?
Essa and Andy are the “thought traps” for Ariane and Kate respectively. Make it clear visually that these characters aren’t “real,” even though they’re based on “real” people in the world of the play. They’re thoughts taking up space in Ariane and Kate’s head.
4. If you could give one piece of advice for those producing the play, what would it be?
Don’t foreshadow Kate’s story. She is bright, happy and positive for a lot of the play. Her inner struggle is not part of her every day persona, until she learns what happens to her brother.
5. Why is this play great for student performers?
The characters are interesting and unique teenagers. Playing unique characters their own age is a great place for students to start with character development.
Not right for your group right now? Search our play catalogue to find one that your performers will love!
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