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McDaniel College Theatre's Student Directed Play Festival

McDaniel College Theatre presents a Student-Directed Play Festival, featuring three one-act plays, March 4 through March 7 at 7:30 p.m.  Students Zack Callis, Kendall Harnsberger, and Patsy Zetkulic direct the pieces.

“Fire Exit,” written by Stacie Lents and directed by Zack Callis, opens in the aftermath of a fire, as the community faces what appears to be a prank gone terribly wrong.  But as the kids and adults open up about their lives and the bigger picture of the day's events emerges, the truth proves to be far less simple.  Told through a series of poignant and often very funny monologues, “Fire Exit” is a powerful ensemble piece that proves things, and people, aren't always as they seem.

The cast of “Fire Exit” consists of McDaniel students James Fagan, Alex Fondersmith, Amanda Halcott, Becca MacDonald, TJ Rigg, Kevin Tyson, and Maya Williams.

Director Callis feels “Fire Exit” is an interesting piece “because the story is told completely through monologues.  Very rarely do the characters on stage interact with one another.  It is an important story that reminds us to never judge a book by its cover and to never make assumptions about what we think we know.  I chose this show because I knew it would challenge me as a director and challenge the cast and production team.”

Inspired by fairy tales, “After Happily,” written by Dennis Bush and directed by Kendall Harnsberger, weaves together the stories of seven characters as they passionately pursue what they believe will bring them perfect happiness.  A sleeping beauty can be the tragic end to an idyllic relationship between a young couple in love.  A prince can be charming and also a stalker.  Through her emotional baggage and jaded life experience, a woman can keep herself from being open to the love of a man who is the perfect prince for her.  A young woman clings to the fairy tales of her childhood, unable to find happiness in her life as an adult.  A guy creates a fairy tale of lies to his girlfriend to keep his Star Wars collection and other distractions a secret. A dancer whose career is ended in a horrific way finds solace in Hans Christian Andersen’s tale of cursed red shoes. Once upon a time...

“I chose this show because it’s one of those shows where, yes, it’s not completely realistic, but the situations and the struggles that characters go through are real,” says director Harnsberger.  “They can and have happened to other people in the world we live in.  I hope that some in the audience will realize that they aren’t alone in their own singular story.  I really enjoy the individual stories that each character tells and I hope to give them each a unique way of presenting that to the audience.”

The cast of “After Happily” includes McDaniel students Allisa Baker, Nicholle D'Anna, Matt Foley, Sophia Gilbart, Darrick Rowe, Kevin Tyson, and Corey van Huff.

“The Grass is Greenest at the Houston Astrodome,” written by Michael Ross Albert and directed by Patsy Zetkulic, examines the relationships between a group of emerging artists when a painter tears the artwork off the walls of a struggling independent gallery.  The play is a comedy about envy, friendship, sex, art, and our constant search for something better.

Director Zetkulic states, “I'm very excited to be able to direct a play this semester so that I can take all that I've learned as a theatre arts major and use it to lead a production.  This play in particular interested me because of its focus on what art can be and how artists relate to the world, all while being one of the funniest plays I've ever read!”  The cast consists of McDaniel students Mara Flynn, Amanda Halcot, Imani Jackson, Corey Van Huff, and Matt Zwick.

The performances are free and open to the public.  For more information, call the box office at 410-857-2448.