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Directing and the One-Act Play Festival in May

You may have missed our March production of "Hello, Dolly!" but there's still time to catch some great theater at St. Stephen's and St. Agnes School. On May 2 and 3, the Stage One Players will be performing a series of one-act plays. These shorter plays are entirely student directed, usually by members of the directing classes. Just as in years past, the evening will be a combination of light comedies and more serious pieces.

Students love directing class. "It's been my favorite class in all of high school," says one senior. Another adds, "Directing is great because it lets me collaborate with my peers on a variety of projects." Taught by theater teacher Jim Marvin, the class explores all aspects of play production, from reading and analyzing a script to finding costumes, and designing lights. "I love directing because it expands the whole scope of your world. As an actor, you focus on one part of the play, but as a director, you get to see the whole thing, and I love to share that with my students," says Mr. Marvin. The class culminates in the One-Act Play Festival, for which students direct, audition, rehearse, and organize tech by themselves.

In recent years, several of the plays performed have been student-written as well as student-directed. The playwriting class meets for the first half of the year with the goal of helping students create a finished play to be performed at the One-Act Festival or just to teach the basics of playwriting and get students started on their plays. Recent student-written plays that have been produced include "Character Assassin," by Gina Suslick, and "Balancing Spoons," by Emily Hawe.

The Stage One One-Act Play Festival is a great opportunity to see some good high school theater and a taste of the many genres of theater. Performances are May 2 and 3 at 8 p.m. at St. Stephen's and St. Agnes School. Tickets are free. For information and ticket reservations, call the drama office at 703-212-2788.