Of the 31 entries to the One Acts this year, the six well-deserving winners were the plays “Acceptance,” “Moving In,” “Confessions of 3 Tree Valley,” “Criminally Obnoxious,” “The Lobster” and “After Life.” Diverse as always, the interludes this year covered themes from birthday parties to grave diggers to the true meaning of beauty. The Paper Tiger asked those involved for their thoughts.
Brian Ebisuzaki ’16, who acted in the interlude “Happy Birthday,” written by Loie Plautz ’15, shared, “I feel like I’m surrounded by family because everybody’s supporting each other and it’s easy to just have fun with it. Not only do you get to meet new people but you get to be someone you’re not, and you’re put into these situations in the plays, you get to be a part of something you wouldn’t usually be a part of.”
Both an actor in and the writer of the interlude “Vanity and Kind Hearts,” veteran One Acts participant Cameron Rosen ’15 said, “I love that it’s all student-driven, student-created; I love that it’s all managed by students, I love that the students write it, I love the self-sufficiency aspect of it.”
Ry Storey-Fisher ’14 described his play, “Acceptance,” as a story about “Lick-Wilmerding students [struggling] for acceptance amongst top-tier cafés, and amongst themselves.”Featuring Rebecca Green ’14 and Jack Gorlin ’14 and directed by Leigh Engel ’14, the play carried themes about the stresses of college and worries of test scores and applications while mixing it with humor and sarcasm as the students were applying for jobs in competitive cafés in place of
ivy league schools.
“‘Moving In’ is a dramatic interpretation of the human experience, with a specific look into the culture of early adulthood,” said Connor Guttmann ’14.
“Moving In” featured Selina Wabl ’14, Reishan McIntosh ’15 and Claire Fry ’15 as three roommates with clashing personalities meeting for the first time in college.
Playwright Connor Guttmann ’14 added, “‘Moving In’ grapples with many of our hopes and fears about the unknown and ultimately questions what it means to be sane.”
The most climactic moment in the play “Confessions of 3 Tree Valley,” written by Jacqueline Blaska ’15 and directed by Claire Stacy ’14, was a line spoken by Toby Richkind ’16 who played the character Terry: “Anyway, Mika, we all have shit we’re hiding. Really, really shitty shit, for some of us, and more mediocre shit for others, I guess, but we’re all damaged goods, Mika. And we’re all trapped in the basement of 3 Tree Valley Community Center while it’s blizzarding out there, and we might as well make the best of it. You know, they say…if you have spoiled milk, and broken eggs, and mealy flour…all you can do is make a cake? Right? …that’s a saying…?”
The characters remain sitting in a circle on the stage as the lights dim and snow is pushed through the door during the first snowstorm that 3 Tree Valley has seen.
Directed by Annabel Ostrow ’14 and written by Daniel Holzman ’17, “Criminally Obnoxious” told the story of two people who used to be in a relationship attempting to rob a Starbucks.
Featuring Jacqueline Blaska ’15 and Zach Hollander ’15, the play included comedic arguments between the ex-couple, such as: “Jeez, Malcolm, why the hell’d ya drag the entire the entire register in here? Seems a bit excessive.” “Oh, so I’m the one who’s being excessive?” “What is your problem! You just shot a barista!”
“The Lobster,” was directed by Asher Gutherz ’14.
Playwright Chase Hommeyer ’14, who wrote her play with help from Leigh Engel ’14, expressed “The Lobster” as “a story of a sociopath without empathy named Mark who goes through life desperately trying to appear normal, as well as the stories of those around Mark who try to connect to him.”
The main role of the sociopath Mark was played by first-time actor Riley Hockett ’15.
When describing his decision to audition for the One Acts, he said, “I basically only play sports at Lick and the One Acts seemed like a really cool thing. I thought that I could score a small part and be involved in them. However, I ended up actually getting a really large part which was a huge surprise to me and it ended up being really fun.”
Fellow actor Nate Gorjance ’16, who played Mark’s best friend Dylan, noted, “I always enjoy the One Acts because I get to completely trade my personality for a new one, and it’s a new environment that I’m welcomed into.”
Featuring Bix Archer ’15, Tano Brock ’14 and Cole Crawford ’16, the play “After Life,” directed by Clara Chan ’14, was described by writer Maya Pollack ’14 as, “Bizarre, happy accident, tragicomedy, the place your brain goes when it falls off your head and it rolls under the refrigerator.”
When describing her experience in a lead role, Bix said, “It was fun—it was challenging, I’m really thankful I got to do it. [Clara Chan ’14] was a really great director. I had a small part both freshman and sophomore year, but this is the first time I had a really big role.”
The 26th Annual One Acts Festival has come to a close after another year, combining the talent, creativity and leadership of Lick students.
Said Cole Crawford ’16, “You don’t have to have a background in acting to audition—we have a really talented student body, and the One Acts give people an opportunity to see that.”