Colby, Bates, Bowdoin: the theatric fusion
This past weekend's Powder and Wig presentation of The Colby-
Bowdoin-Bates One-Act Festival lived up to its tag line of "Little Shows.
Big Fun." Though Friday night's performances lacked a representative
from Bowdoin, the audience was still treated to five smart, funny and innovative
one-acts all directed by either
Colby or Bates students.
The festival opened with the insightful "A Farce on Postmodernist Thought for The Beginning Reader," written by Colby's own Grant Patch '12. This short play revolves around Hannah and Jack, two self-important, hipster undergrads who meet for coffee and talk about music, Nietzsche and Hannah's blog that will someday "change the world." At the end of this smart microcosmic description of our generation, Jack makes the bold and accurate statement that Hannah is too wrapped up in herself. One of the many reasons Patch's smart and introspective dialogue works so well is because Margaret Fasel '12 and Dan Echt '11 deliver stellar performances as Hannah and Jack respectively.
The next short play to grace the stage was "The Red Coat," directed by Bates student Matt Paul '09. With a minimalist set of just a bench and a half-empty bottle of wine, this play focuses on a drunken man and his beloved Mary, who he has been eyeing for a long time but has only finally gotten up the courage to address. In this play, one thing is clear: Paul knows how to work an audience. His play garners many laughs for comedic lines, such as the man's drunk declaration that he has "loved [Mary] for like a long-ass time."
Following with another take on relationships was "A Singular Kind of Guy," directed by Michelle Schiloss '12 and starring Thomas Wesson '09, both of whom are Bates students. This story was the "feel good" tale of the bunch. After the hilarious Wesson declares that he is a typewriter--well a "Model 250 portable typewriter" to be exact--he discovers that the girl dressed in all white, who he seems to be on a date with, is actually a piece of paper. Cue "happily ever after." Colby took over next with junior Rine Vieth's "Variations on the Death of Trotsky." This innovative play depicts multiple versions of Leon Trotsky's final days. Though it might sound depressing, Elizabeth Zagroba '09 and Trip Venturella '12 lend their perfect comedic timing to the roles of Mrs. and Mr. Trotsky respectively and make a play, centered around a guy with a ice pick smashed into his skull, a rather funny experience.
The festival ended with the warmly received "The Philadelphia," directed by Bates' Michelle Schloss '12 and featuring Wesson and Rory Cosgrove '11. Dining in what looks like a Brooklyn pizzeria, the comically talented Cosgrove explains that Wesson is stuck in a black hole called a "Philadelphia," where one must ask for the opposite of what one wants in order to get it. The upbeat message of this smart, well-acted and extremely funny play is "enjoy your Philadelphia." Unexpectedly, I found this set of one-acts to be a wonderful treat. With superb actors and equally talented directors, all in attendance were privy to a group of insightful and funny plays.