Advanced Acting Students Write and Direct Their Own Plays


Hailey Hesher

Senior Austin Kruppstadt directs the actors of his play during rehearsal.

Amy Surface, Writer

With the unfortunate cancellation of a Winter musical, the students in Ms. Caroline Dawson’s Advanced Acting (AA) class had the opportunity to write their own ten-minute plays. After a few days of tryouts to determine cast lists, the writers got started in directing their productions. 

Most of the AA students are no stranger to the stage, after performing in a number of musicals or plays, but standing behind the curtain was unfamiliar territory. Creating and directing a production gave them the chance to experience new opportunities in the Arts Department. 

“Directing is a lot different because you have a lot of moving parts to work with. You have to make sure all your actors know what they’re doing, but with acting, you have to memorize all your blocking cues and lines. I definitely prefer acting because I just have to make sure I know what to do compared to directing where I have to think about everything,” said Koy Hackworth, junior. 

Each director had the freedom to explore various ideas and inspirations for their plays. Both Hackworth and Ella Crewse, senior, based their work off songs. 

“The inspiration for my show The Secret Life of Heather Lindsey came from the song “Heather” by Conan Gray. I really wanted to change people’s perspectives and give them a new outlook on the song, so I wrote my play from Heather’s point of view. In the song it sounds like Heather has some perfect life and everybody loves her but nobody really knows what happens behind closed doors,” said Crewse. Hackworth based his off “If This Is the Last Time” by LANY. 

The ten-minute parameter added another challenge in creating an effective and entertaining storyline that could be told quickly. This limit enabled all 17 plays to be showcased in one night, roughly adding up to the time of a singular production. 

Overall, the Fall Showcase for the theater department was a success. Not only did it entertain audience members, but it also gave students valuable experience and insight from another aspect of the stage.