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Five Plays, Two Shows: One Acts Return

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Spring term has flown by, with memorable events from Circle Fest and Events Dance to Spring Fling taking place throughout. Preeminent among these spring traditions, though, is the One Act Festival, in which students direct short one-act plays (often written by students). This year’s One Act Festival once again was a compilation of an amazing group of actors, imaginative playwrights, and devoted directors. Below are short synopses of each play.

“A Streak of Lavender” by Mac Galinson ‘17

This one act explores the historical theory that Abraham Lincoln (Max Solomon ‘19) was gay. Lincoln was joined onstage by lover Joshua Speed (Charlie Hawkings ‘17) and wife Mary Todd Lincoln (Carly Bowman ‘17) Director James Hovet ‘18 commented: “I knew that I wanted to direct it from when I first read it.” A combination of strong acting and excellent technical aspects (thanks to James’ expansive experience) made this show unforgettably strong.

“Table 12” by Daisy Fey ‘18

This show is based on three encounters between Charlie (Teddy Carlin ‘20) and four very distinct girls. “Teddy essentially plays the ‘straight man’ trope – he’s the guy around whom chaos is unwinding,” notes Christian Carson ‘18, who directed the “rip-roaring comedy” alongside Phoebe Fry ‘17. This show featured newcomers Yan Davidoff ‘18, Sarah Conner ‘19, and Piper Higgins ‘17, while Verity Lynch ‘17 and Lyndsey Toce ‘19 returned to the Groton stage.

“A Small House” by Ellie Solomon ‘17

“A Small House” explores grief and loss as two sisters, played by Hadley Callaway ‘17 and Josie Fulton ‘18, deal with the impact of their sister’s death on their families. Throughout the play, the two sisters quarrel over whether to share the truth with their children (also Hadley and Josie), who seem to question death in their own unique way. This one act, directed by Malik Gaye ‘18, explores heavier matters, providing a poignant counterpoint to the comedies of the evening.

“Groton Goes SNL” by Karla Sanford and Sophie Park ‘19

Writers and Directors Karla and Sophie worked alongside a small ensemble of students to bring to a life two sketches that parodied life at Groton. Karla said she was grateful for the opportunity to work with “such a dynamic group of people.” Eliza noted that the experience was incredibly gratifying, and that it was “fun getting to work with people that [she] wouldn’t generally work with.”

“Bus Stop” by James Hovet ‘18

This play, directed by Jon Lamson and Alex Waxman ‘18, centers on a boy and a girl who meet at a bus stop. The girl (Victoria Wahba ‘17) sees her ex-boyfriend and, in a moment of panic, a stranger (Pat Ryan ‘19) pretends to be her husband in order to fend off the awkward advances of her ex-boyfriend (Lars Caspersen ‘19). Naturally, this leads to a number of unexpected and comedic events. Lars noted that his experience was enjoyable because he was able to participate “without the time commitment of a larger production.” He hopes to try out again next year.

“Chapel” by Dowey Tran

“Chapel” explores one of our very own Groton traditions. Directed by Aly Manjee and Michael Senko ‘18, this One Act takes place in St. John’s Chapel. The play satirizes the morning chapel, featuring a chapel speaker (Caroline Johnston ‘17), an organist (Gus Vrattos ’19), and even an appearance from God (Amani Jiu ‘17). Gus has never been in a play before, and said that one acts were “a fun way to get a glimpse into the world of theater.”

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