D22 Paul Creative Arts Center
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University of New Hampshire
John C. Edwards Undergraduate Prize Plays
The Undergraduate Prize Play Selection Committee is pleased to announce the 2015/16 winning plays. The four person committee made their choices from a field of 14 submissions.
- "Whatever you Want" by Tom Spencer
- "Blooming Lilies" by Kayla Doing
- "Netflix and Kill" by Katelin Garland
The committee wishes to offer special recognition to the following plays:
- "Promises" by Marjorie Boyle
- "The Chosen One" by Joe Jukneivich
- "Pipe Dream" by Kayleigh Kane
The committee was greatly impressed with the quality of all the plays submitted this year and encourages all those who entered a script for consideration to seriously consider to keep writing.
The directors chosen for this year's productions are Elizabeth Girard, Allie Wing and Sara Martin.
The John C. Edwards Undergraduate Prize Plays (UPP) are awarded to undergraduate students whose original works will be produced and performed in the final slot of our main stage season. This award is made possible through the generosity of writer and actor Mike O'Malley '88, ("Diverting Devotion," "Yes Dear" and "Glee") who is also a former student of Professor Edwards. Mr. O'Malley and Professor Edwards are included in the play selection committee that selects the winning works.
Up to three $500 prizes will be awarded. Prizes will come in the form of a credit to student's UNH tuition bill.
- Plays may be submitted by any enrolled UNH undergraduate student.
- No more than two entries per playwright.
- Plays must be ONE ACT in length.
- The deadline is August 1, 2016.
- The winner(s) will be announced by September 1, 2016.
- Complete the online registration form.
Please e-mail David Kaye at email@example.com for any additional information.
“To the Gap” written by Ally Foy ’15.
July 7th, 2005, an unexpected tragedy struck London. The London Tube bombings shocked everyone around the world, comparable to September 11, 2001. Innocent people were targeted in hatred and lives were lost while other lives were destroyed. This is the story of Jacob, a South London native, who is directly affected by the event and tortured by his own loss. Keeping a promise he made, Jacob uses writing and film to atone for the past and move forward. If today were the last day you saw your loved ones, what would you say? "To the Gap" is directed by Ansley Berg ‘15.
“Breaking Mirrors” written by Tori Skoniecki ’17.
This show centers on the character Harper who is torn between her best friend, Skylar, and her boyfriend, Ray. Harper’s life is thrown a curveball when she discovers the people she loves most hate one another, and she is asked to pick sides. Harper is forced to look at herself and to question what or who has control over her identity. Many people come to this crossroad and have to make difficult decisions- decisions that will define them and their future relationships. During our rehearsals, we talked about what makes us who we are - is it the people we keep around us, the decisions we make, or other factors? Who are we without the people in our lives that make up the pieces of us? This show asks the audience members to examine what they would do in Harper’s circumstances. “Breaking Mirrors” is directed by Olivia Sowell ’15.
“The Last Testament of Ethel Rosenberg” written by Joseph Juknievich ’16.
On July 19, 1953 Ethel and Julius Rosenberg, a married Jewish couple, were convicted of conspiracy to commit espionage by transferring information about the atomic bomb to the Soviets and were therefore sentenced to death by electric chair. This date would forever go down in history as the end to the most controversial espionage case of the Second Red Scare.
The Venona documents (decoded messages sent by Soviet Union intelligence agencies) were declassified and made public in 1995. These documents made clear that Julius was indeed involved in Soviet espionage targeting the Manhattan Project, but the only thing said about Ethel was that she was “sufficiently well-developed politically and knows about her husband’s work.” Before this information was released and during the time of her trial, the only thing the government had against her was testimony delivered by her own brother. He and his wife were effectively responsible for sending Ethel to the electric chair since no one else claimed to witness her involvement in any part of the conspiracy.
So the question stands: Did Ethel Rosenberg conspire to commit espionage against the United States of America? Or was she merely an innocent victim of a framing by a government willing to do whatever it took to stop the chaos caused by the Red Scare? If so, then why did she choose to orphan her two young children who begged and pleaded for her to return to them? It’s questions like these that we hope to explore throughout this play, and by doing so we aim to answer this single-most important question: Who was Ethel Rosenberg really? “The Last Testament of Ethel Rosenberg” is directed by Kristen Henrick ’15.
The prize was also awarded to Production Manager Sara Martin '16.
“Ones and Zeros,” written by Brian Walker ‘15 of East Kingston, NH.
Seen. Typing… now there's nothing. What's going on? Adam and Violet struggle to keep their relationship together as it gets pulled apart by the petty problems of online communication. Meanwhile, Brick and Ava have a much more serious problem to deal with. The winning playwright, Brian Walker, is a junior marketing and acting double major from East Kingston, New Hampshire. Brian is a board member for Mask and Dagger's dramatic society and loves music, acting, sports and writing. He hopes to pursue a career in music/writing/acting when he graduates. "Ones and Zeroes" is his first play and will be directed by Kaitlin Deyo ‘14.
“Raising Hell” written by Dan Shine ’14 of Shrewsbury, MA.
Sixteen year-old Mel and her mother don't always get along, but when Mel accidentally summons a soul-bargaining demon, Mel is forced to realize the consequences of her actions and see that perhaps she is not always right. Dan Shine is a senior English and theatre major from Shrewsbury, Massachusetts. He hopes to pursue a career in writing and directing for stage, but also enjoys performing improvised comedy with UNH's Improv Anonymous as well as collecting comics and playing video games in his free time. This is his second John C. Edwards playwriting award. “Raising Hell” is directed by Danielle Barrett ’14.
“Party of Three” written by Amy Desrosiers ’14 of Salem, NH.
When recent-college-grad Julia gets the house to herself for the weekend, she plans to take advantage of her alone time. The step-father/step-son robber duo, Cal and Dennis, find the perfect house to hit in order to save their butts from an angry mob boss. When the two worlds collide, mayhem and confusion commence. Amy Desrosiers is a junior theatre and Spanish major from Salem, New Hampshire. She is involved with the social justice group, WildActs, and the leadership organization, uLEAD. Amy hopes to pursue a career in either acting or international hospitality. This is her first play and she plans to keep writing. “Party of Three” is directed by Rachel Vilandre ’14.
“Uncle Zeke and the Texas Mafia” written by Thomas Spencer ’16 of Bedford, NH.
When Zeke suspects his own wife Connie may be in the Mafia, he attempts to confirm his theory with schemes woven of hints from old friends, the assassination of President Kennedy and aliens. The winning playwright, Tom Spencer, is a sophomore journalism major from Bedford, New Hampshire. He frequently contributes to The New Hampshire and UNH Tales. He is studying Arabic and hopes to pursue a career in journalism. “Uncle Zeke” is directed by Samantha Smith ‘14.
Other prize winners include set designer, Lyndsey Nowlan ’15 of Leominster, Massachusetts; costume designer, Sarah LaFlamme ’14 of Franklin, Massachusetts and lighting designer, Connor McGrath ’14 of Manchester, New Hampshire.
“A Love Story” written by Jessica Miller ‘13 of Lee, NH.
When Amber, a young woman with an eating disorder, is placed into residential care, she is faced with the most difficult battle of her life. Luckily her boyfriend, Ed, is by her side. However, Amber and Ed begin to realize that their own idea of "support" and "recovery" are vastly different from one another, and thus they must also fight for their relationship. The winning playwright, Jessica Miller, is a senior theatre and math education major from Lee, NH. Jessica is currently an improviser in Dorks in Dungeons and is in rehearsals for the musical, “The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee.” Her passion is acting and she hopes to move to Chicago to pursue an acting career. “A Love Story” is directed by Nina Lary ‘13 of Antrim, NH.
“Occupational Hazards” written by Dan Shine ‘14 of Shrewsbury, MA.
When Roy, an awkward would-be writer stuck in a dead-end job, arranges for a blind date online, he gets more than he bargained for. As dinner proceeds with Stephanie, a charming computer analyst, she reveals that she is there for a far more sinister reason. Both are forced to confront the dark reason for their seemingly random encounter, calling to question what sorts of things are better left unsaid. The winning playwright, Dan Shine, is a junior English and theatre double major from Shrewsbury, Massachusetts. Dan is a member of Improv Anonymous comedy group and loves acting, writing, comics, and film. He hopes to pursue a career in writing and directing for stage. “Occupational Hazards” is directed by Nick Iannotti ‘13 of Alton, NH.
“Retreat to Will's House” written by Colton Huelle ’15.
After drunkenly breaking up with his girlfriend, Will Ward meets Jack, a stranger with a mysteriously thorough knowledge of Will's past. Led by Jack's prodding, Will revisits his adolescent love for the beautiful and unattainable Veera. Returning to his childhood hideaway, a dilapidated garden shed, Will must face his most painful and poignant memories in an attempt to reclaim the past from which he has never escaped. The winning playwright, Colton Huelle, grew up in Bedford, NH, where he began writing poetry and short fiction in high school. He has performed his poetry in many New England bars and coffee shops. He currently studies English literature and the University of New Hampshire. He is tremendously influenced by New England and Bob Dylan. "The Retreat to Will's House" is his first play and will be directed by Elise Williams ’13.
Other prize winners include student designers Alyssa LeBlanc ’13, a design and technology theatre major of Salem, NH, Sara Demos '13, a general theatre major of York, ME, and Danielle Pancoast ’13, a design and technology theatre major of Westford, MA..
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