BW Twenty-Four Hour Theatre Project a Success


Baldwin Wallace Theatre and Dance

The playwrights for the 24-Hour Theatre Project pose for a picture. Clockwise from top left: Dayne Sundman, Brandon Romano, Abi Scott Kathryn Griffen, Joshua Smalley, and Eric Dahl.

Gabrielle Radak, Contributing Writer

The department of Theatre and Dance held this year’s 24 Hour Theatre Project on Sept. 24 and 25. The event is a yearly overnight theatrical experience for theatre majors and minors.
This year marks the eighth year for the 24 Hour Theatre Project. As the name implies, the students involved participate in theatre over  the course of 24 hours.
During the project, six ten-minute plays are written and produced by students. This year, the six plays were mainly dramas with one comedy.
Xavier Khan, a junior production management major, was the show’s producer. Khan was in charge of making the project a reality by organizing the participants and directors throughout the day.
“The plays were very well written and expressed strong, but dark, truths in the world today,” Khan said.
Students in the department were able to take on different roles, such as actors, directors, playwrights, assistant stage managers, and production team members. This provides  students with the opportunity to try something they might not have otherwise had the chance to do in theatre.
“This project really pushes the growing theatre artists to try a new aspect of the art for 24 hours,” Kahn added. “It helps to give a holistic experience.”
The playwrights were left alone to write the first evening while workshops were held for the other participants.
Local professionals lead participants in various workshops including yoga, scene painting and improv.
Playwrights knew their actors before writing, but discovered their director in the morning when their writing was complete. The producing team was in charge of assigning playwrights their actors and  director.
Tiffany Trapnell, a junior theatre major, was a director this year. Last year, she participated as an actor.
Trapnell directed Brandon Romano’s piece, “A Sense of Purpose.” She was able to work with Dan Telford, Kelly Tomko, Ryan Ginter, and Emily Passara, all of whom are new to the department.
“I very much enjoyed working with my actors on their first production on the BW stages,” Trappnell said. “It was refreshing to watch them learn the ins and outs of the show in 24 hours.”
For these students, there were not many chances to get sleep. So how did these students stay awake through the whole experience?
“A lot of coffee and sheer willpower,” Kahn said.
“As the producer, I got about an hour of rest before we brought on our yoga instructor for the actors and assistant stage managers at 7:30 in the morning.”
No matter what aspect of the performance with which they were involved, each participant was able to gain valuable experience in the theatre arts.
“My favorite part about participating in the 24 Hour Theatre Project is the inventiveness of true collaboration among the theatre artists,” Trappnell said.
“It is a unique experience in that the students provide absolutely every piece of the puzzle to complete the event.”