In Preparation: A Lenten Festival

About two months ago, my good friend Julie Newberry came to me with her plan to host a Ten-page Play Festival at her church. The festival was to be celebrated in preparation of Easter, a Lenten festival with plays centered on themes of life and death, loss and rebirth, and journeying. I thought this was a fantastic idea. I still do.

This weekend, St. Paul’s Episopal Church (15 Roy St., Seattle) will host its first annual Ten-page Play Festival featuring a dozen plays submitted by writers from all over the country. Plays were judged “blind” (the judges weren’t blind, they just didn’t know the name of the author who wrote the play they were reading), and the resulting afternoon promises to be enlightening, challenging, and lots of fun.

The festival begins at 1:30 p.m. on Sunday, March 25th, in the Parish Hall of the church. I am directing two of the plays: Piney Ridge, by La’Chris Jordan, a haunting play about a Virginia family’s confrontation with lynching in the 1920’s; and Idiot, by Sean Patrick Taylor, a lovely play about two transient men in their forties, one a merry-go-round operator, and the other a con man who hopes to get his poor friend’s one paycheck.

Piney Ridge is being read at 2:30, and Idiot goes at 3:30. Suggested donation is $5, but the event is being billed as pay-what-you-can.

I also have a play being read at 1:30. The Catacombs of Texas is story about an old man trying to teach a troubled teen a lesson about life and death. My wife thinks its funny, and I guess the three readers who judged the play found something in it as well. It’s always scary hearing your work read for the first time, but exhilarating, too.

…see you there…

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