By DJ Small
A festival of first night plays by UCR student playwrights will take place the last weekend in May. The 20 plays performed at “Playworks” are shorts and one-acts that range in plot complexity and style. With titles like Fish for a Lifetime, Beer for a Day and Goblin Lord of Destruction, the festival can’t help but to entice. The great thing about new works is that, though they’re often more absurd than classic, they are, commonly, short. In other word, if any of the performances tend more towards the absurd side of things, you can rest assured it won’t last long.
But a lot of the work that has recently come out of the UCR MFA Playwright Program has been provocative and quite refreshing, especially for those of us who don’t care to see Oklahoma! ever again. Some of the student’s work has been featured in Redlands at the Performance Loft, while others have been taken to state competitions. Plays will begin at 8PM Wednesday, May 28, and run through Saturday, May 31, at the Theatre Rehearsal Lab on the UCR campus. And a different slate of work is scheduled for each night. Plus the production contains mature themes and language, and may not be suitable for all audiences. Tis indeed a plus.
And it’s free, save for a $5 parking fee. But it’s first come, first serve, with limited seating, so arrive early. (DJ Small)
UCR Playworks, at the Theatre Rehearsal Lab on the UCR campus, Humanities 411, (951) 827-3245, beginning Wednesday, May 28 at 8PM
Wednesday, May 28, 8PM
A slate of Undergraduate work
Living to Die
Amidst the weighted struggles of daily life, the idea of perseverance dwindles as issues in society bear down on two men.
By Yuri Daniels
Radio DJ is confronted by a revengeful woman who seeks to take advantage of his audition time and gain a fan base of her own.
In a humorous take on the trials of shopping, Laurie must buy last minute shoes for a wedding from the lone disgruntled shop worker, Clarissa.
The Jr. Psychic Prediction Agency & Alchemy Shoppe
By Luis Correa
A young psychic foretells the death of a city council member. Using her clairvoyance and wit, she aims to change his destiny.
By Lindsay Smith
Pauly is pumped for the biggest stand-up gig of his career, unaware that his ex-fiancée is in the audience and she knows all his jokes.
It’s Gotta Be Wayne
A woman finds her life at stake when she is kidnapped by a serial rapist, but tables turn when the psychopath needs his victim’s help.
By Dalila Holness
Seventeen-year-old Cane challenges his mother for control of his recently deceased sister’s funeral arrangements, determined to have her remembered as he saw her.
Thursday, May 29, 8PM
A slate of Undergraduate work.
By Jyoti Kumari Dugal
When Priya visits her traditional, matchmaking Indian mother, Rita, and reveals unexpected plans of her own, the bond of love between them is tested.
By Sarah Mishler
Feeling herself spiraling back down into addiction, Fiona struggles to reach out to her best friend, Harry, all in the midst of a playwriting deadline.
Fish for a Lifetime, Beer for a Day
By Alice Ercolini
Worlds collide when a preacher is sent to save a politician’s son from homelessness. They grapple together and learn hard truth of family and salvation.
Goblin Lord of Destruction
By Allen Ivers
A schizophrenic barfly seeks companionship and stability in a local barmaid, but she has a secret on which depends the fate of the human race.
Point of the PTA
By Carolyn Stephenson
Two candidates for the elections for the Grace Jorden Magnet Elementary Academy and Kindergarten PTA presidency must compete for the seat and their precious children.
The Glass Apple & the Poisoned Shoe
By Lauren Eash
In this twisted realm of happily-ever-after, princesses Ella and Whitey, clash over the idea of divorce, forcing them to confess the secrets in their lives.
Friday, May 30, 8PM
Graduate students in the MFA program present
By Paul Jacques
Ron Grey commands the first outpost on Mars. When his personal life disintegrates, he believes he is fated to live the tragic myth of Cydonia.
By Molly Gross
When a father and son design an invention, their clashing marketing ideas spark a purging of true feelings, resulting in the re-invention of their relationship.
Ninety-Nine Cents Plus
By Brian Ogelsby
Fat Teddy and Carolena are expecting a call on a pay phone when a bike accident and broken cell brings Blue into their crumbling world.
Saturday, May 31, 8PM
Graduate students in the MFA program present
The Geisha Interviews
A multi-voice poem play exploring the birth of a geisha novel from the perspective of the novelist, his Asian American girlfriend, and his geisha friends.
By LaSharon Perez
In a liberal fertility clinic, the selection of the perfect genetic specimen fuels a debate on who has the right to use unconventional procreation techniques.
The Flying Henchman
By Jessi Sundell
A distraught waitress doesn’t know what to do when she meets the ghost of a gangster condemned to drive the street of Chicago for eternity
Things that Fall from the Sky
By Brenda Varda
Melvia likes to look at the stars with Jaime, but it’s difficult. Astronauts, worms, lightning—you never know what might come down from the sky.