Ouachita Baptist University’s chapter of Alpha Psi Omega national theatre honor society will present its annual All Night Theatre: Ten-Minute Play Festival in Verser Theatre Saturday, March 9, at 7:30 p.m. The festival includes plays written, directed and performed by students. It is free and open to the public.
The Ten-Minute Play Festival is often referred to as “All Night Theatre” by Ouachita students because of the turn-around time in which the shows are produced. Auditions take place Thursday evening, and casts are announced the following day. Directors, actors and creative team members then have 24 hours to develop each show, often working through the night to learn lines, block and rehearse. Students of all majors and experience levels are encouraged to participate.
The festival “is a chance for creativity in all areas of theatre – for students who are in theatre and those that aren’t,” said Eric Phillips, Ouachita professor of theatre arts. Phillips said the student-led nature of the event increases audience attendance and encourages student leadership.
The tradition began roughly 10 years ago when Ouachita welcomed Jon Jory, a theatre director from Louisville, Ky., to campus. Jory spoke with students about the creative freedom and benefits of a 10-Minute Play Festival. The students took the idea and began the annual festival.
The event is directed behind the scenes by “the triumvirate,” a select student group of Alpha Psi Omega members, which recruits actors, directors and designers. The 2019 triumvirate includes Dylan Blackwood, a junior musical theatre major from Walnut Ridge, Ark.; Michaela Finley, a senior musical theatre major from Alma, Ark.; and Molly Kennedy, a sophomore musical theatre major from Melissa, Texas.
“The fact that [the festival] is put on strictly by students makes the Ten-Minute Play Festival different from other productions in the season; and we know what students want to see,” said Michaela Finley, a senior musical theatre major from Alma, Ark.
The annual festival will be held on Saturday, March 9, beginning at 7:30 p.m. in Verser Theatre. Admission is free and open to the public. For more information, contact Ouachita’s Box Office at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (870) 245-5555 from 1-5 p.m. on weekdays.
By Mercedes Mata
March 5, 2019