Oxy New Play Festival

Calling all theatre fanatics and friends of theatre fanatics (…so everyone)!  Get a little workout walking up to Keck Theatre on February 19, 20, and 21 to see a series of short play readings!  The New Play Festival is an annual Oxy tradition.  All the plays are student written and have been selected from among dozens of submissions.  The play readings use both student actors and local actors, and all of them are directed by guest artists.

The line up for this year is:

Bombs Away by Billy Schmidt on Friday, February 19 at 8pm; This is How the Pacheco Brothers Make Their Mother’s Chicken Soup by Maricela Guardado, The Pocket Watch by Hannah Kaminsky, and The Love of Your Life by Nikki Resendez on Saturday, February 20 at 7pm; and Old, New by Rory Horne on February 21 at 6pm.

Bombs Away, written by theatre major Billy Schmidt and directed by guest artist Robert Cucuzza, follows the unusual business day of the Marx Brothers/Three Stooges at the Defense Security Cooperation Agency, in which an anarchist performance artist dresses up like a British diplomat to buy a bomb.  Ridiculously funny and lighthearted, you’ll be exploding with laughter.


This is How the Pacheco Brothers Make Their Mother’s Chicken Soup, directed by guest artist Herbert Siguenza and written by Maricela Guardado, a Los Angeles-based writer and actress, is a full-length play that follows the adventures and hurdles the three Pacheco Brothers face in recreating their mother’s famous chicken soup on the eve of the anniversary of their mother’s death.  


The Pocket Watch, directed by guest artist Daisuke Tsuji and written by Hannah Kaminsky, a senior Political Science major, is set in the Art Insitute of Chicago, where a woman in the midst of a rocky relationship encounters a Holocoaust survivor.  Chagall’s America Windows brings the two together to investigate the past and look towards the future.  This is Kaminsky’s first one-act play, and it was written for Professor Laurel Meade’s fall Playwriting course – so it’s gotta be good.


Tell Me I'm Beautiful, directed by guest artist Rosie Glen-Lambert and written by senior English and Media Arts & Culture major Nikki Resendez, is a single-act play in which actress Ann and novelist Michael meet, fall in love, have a full relationship and separate.  The play explores creativity and romances and addresses important questions such as “How do we turn love into art?” 


Old, New is directed by guest artist Peter Howard and written by 20-year-old exchange student and playwright Rory Horne.  Horne is from the UK and has been writing since his mid-teens.  Old, New, which is Horne’s second full-length play, transitions from past to present in order to explore how relationships can change for the better or for the worse.

If for some bizarre reason these talented young writers and the previews of their plays isn’t enough to convince you to come, I have one more selling point…I’m in it!  …Hmmm…on second thought, maybe that’s a reason not to come (no, just joking – even if you don’t like me, come to support your other fellow artists because they are all fantastic) – but, yes!  All jokes aside, I am playing “Mia” in The Love of Your Life, and I know it would not only mean the world to me if you came and brought all your friends – it would mean the world to all the writers, actors and actresses, directors, stage managers…You’ll be guaranteed to have some laughs and leave with a smile on your face and a new thought in your head.  


And maybe – just maybe – I’ll even buy you a cookie from the Cooler if you come up to me after the show and say you came because of this article.


(Oh, P.S. Admission is FREE!)