Ten plays, ten minutes, one theme.
This is the premise for New York Stageworks' third annual theatre festival "Ten by Ten," opening April 28.
The concept of ten, ten-minute plays was conceived by the Actors Theatre of Louisville. In their second season, Stageworks became intrigued with the idea of the ten minute festival and came up with one of their own.
"We saw it as a good way to become introduced to new writers and to produce new plays," producing artistic director Laura Margolis told Playbill On-Line (April 9).
Since Stageworks is a relatively new company (four years old), Margolis said it would be extraordinarily difficult to mount a full length original production. With "Ten by Ten," Stageworks can still introduce their audiences to new works and new themes.
This year's Ten are: Sydna Byrne's The Second Arrow, Elizabeth Diggs' Black Eye, James Farrell's Purple Haze, Josh Ben Friedman's Visions of Apocalyptic Doom, Elizabeth Gould Hemmerdinger's Rug Rage, Lucille Lichtblau's The Purple Prose of Cairo, Fred Sahner's A Moving Experience, Eric H. Weinberger's Camp Reunion,and Cordelia & Robert Zukerman's And To Think That I Saw It.... Directing the shows are Leigh Strimbeck and Richard Hoehler, the latter best known for his solos, Human Resources and Working Class. Last year's festival featured playwright Warren Leight (Side Man) and Elizabeth Diggs' (American Beef).
Diggs will return to the 1999 festival along with playwright James Sparrow.
Each year a new color theme is chosen for the festival. This year Stageworks opted for purple. "We pick colors to tie the plays together, because we don't want the scene changes to last longer than the actual play," Margolis said.
The Stageworks season will continue with the wise-cracking show June Moon, by George S. Kaufman and Ring Lardner, and will conclude with Paul Vogel's Pulitzer Prize-winning play, How I Learned to Drive.
For more information on the season or to order tickets call the Stageworks box office at (518) 822-9667.
-- By Becki Heller