Laughter is the best medicine to cure the winter blahs

William Tippery on a blind date with Teagan Plett in the comedy Check Please (Photo: Jef Gibbons)

Blind dates, summer shenanigans, big box stores, monkeys… you never know what to expect in the eclectic  assortment of plays that make up New Generations, showing January 29 – February 2 at Trinity Western University’s School of the Arts, Media and Culture. Five short plays, each directed by a Theatre student, and each offering plenty of laughs, come together to create one diverse and entertaining production.

“This festival is always a highlight because it showcases the depth of talent we have at TWU,” says Theatre Department Chair, Angela Konrad. “All the actors, directors, stage managers, and crew are students, and this year, so are two of the playwrights!”

The new plays receiving their world premieres are Building Blocks, a comedic romance by fourth year Theatre major Benjamin Buckingham; and I Spy With My Little Lie, an adrenalin-laced comedy about love, deception, and Walmart penned by Nicola Prigge, a double-major in Theatre and Education.

“It’s so exciting to see my play come to life on stage,” says Prigge, “and it’s incredible to see people embody characters that used to exist only in my mind.” Buckingham agrees: “There’s a kind of creative thrill in the whole process that I really wasn’t expecting. This opportunity has greatly increased my interest in playwriting.”

The other plays in the line-up are: Richard Greenberg’s Life Under Water, a comic drama about the rich and spoiled; David Ives’ clever comedy about the inevitability of art, Words, Words, Words; and Jonathan Rand’s Check Please, a series of blind dates that couldn’t possibly get worse… until they do.

All five directors are taking their first shot at helming a production. They are graduating BFA Acting students Megan Couch and Sarah Ruth; graduating BA in Theatre student Brittany Gainer; and third year Theatre majors Eleanor Felton and Amy Dauer. First year Tiffany Kanda has the daunting task of running the show, as the Festival Stage Manager. In total, more than 30 students are involved in producing New Generations, including 17 actors.

Running one week only,January 19 – February 2, New Generations promises a fast-paced and funny festival, brimming with the exuberance of youth. Performances are 7:30pm Tues-Sat with a matinee at 2:00pm Saturday February 2.  Tickets are $8 – 14 and available at the door or at www.twu.ca/theatre. For more information, go to the website or email theatre@twu.ca.

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