A Display of Student Directorial Work: E-town’s Eighth Shorts Fest
November 8, 2019   //   By:   //   Arts & Culture, Arts and Culture, Campus & Community, Campus and Community

For two nights only, witness the productions of short plays directed by students in the E-town Shorts Fest. On November 22 and 23, the Elizabethtown College Theatre Department will host the eighth and final Shorts Fest at E-town. The production will showcase five student directors from the directing class taught by Professor Michael Swanson through the Theatre Department and will count as their final artistic project.

This year, four of the plays come from outside writers, but one was written by an E-town student, Tasha Lewis. Lewis is involved in the Shorts Fest as both a director and playwright and raves about her experience in this production.

“Shorts Fest is a great opportunity for students to show what they have learned and get some experience in a more professional setting,” Lewis said. “We have a lot of creative freedom and responsibility in this project.”

This year, Elizabeth Baker, Emily Baker, Tasha Lewis, Jonathan Standke, and Erin Vago are the student directors involved in the Shorts Fest. They will each direct one play from playwrights including Crystal Skillman, David Howard, Nick Zagone, Ashley Harris, and Tasha Lewis. While there is a small amount of supervision from faculty, student directors have a majority of control over their own production. “I like seeing how students direct these plays creatively,” said Professor Swanson.

The Shorts Fest is an opportunity for students to showcase their skills in directing and play production. Students choose plays with very few actors and basic lighting, sound, and set requirements in order to accommodate multiple shows being performed in one night. While plays are performed by actors who have memorized their scripts and are able to use props and furniture, no full set is built.

By opening auditions to all students and to the public, the Shorts Fest also offers experience in theatre to others not enrolled in the directing class. “People can taste theatre a bit, and sometimes they go on to audition for further productions,” says Professor Swanson. The Shorts Fest is a showcase of the various talents and hard work of our students in theatre.

The E-town Shorts Fest will be performed on November 22 and 23 at 8:00 p.m. in the Tempest Theatre. Tickets are $5 and can be reserved by calling 717-361-1170 or by emailing boxoffice@etown.edu.

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