Thank you to all who participated in our 2022 Virtual New Works Festival!
Braedon Hatt '22, Stephi Howard '22 and Laural Meade
For more than 20 years, the Occidental New Works Festival has paired student playwrights and actors with professional guest directors and performers. Focused on writer-centric rehearsal and performance, the festival provides a real-world experience of new play development as it is practiced in major theaters around the country. For the 2022 festival, all performances will take place on zoom - allowing both artists and audiences the chance to experience the plays from the comfort of their homes.
The Plays & Schedule
Saturday, February 26, 2022
ABCD by Lily Abha Cratsley '23
a one-act play
Directed by Reena Dutt
As they prepare dinner, three generations of Indian women clash and comfort one another, exploring what it means to be an "American Born Confused Desi." Willow, a young academic, is eager to learn all that her Nani can teach her. Willow’s mother, Aditi finds herself stuck between her own overbearing mother and a critical daughter. What will happen when loss, love, and longing are shared across the dinner table?
Casual by Sophie Steinberg '23
a full-length play
Directed by Alana Dietze
The roof of the library, the dorm showers, a frat party - college student Margo looks for love (or is it just sex) where she can find it. The guys she connects with along the way seem nice enough - but why is what they have to offer never what she really needs? With sexpert podcaster Angelica “Sexy” Stevens acting as both the angel and devil on Margo’s shoulder, it’s no wonder that she can’t find the answers, let alone ask the right questions.
Sunday, February 27, 2022
Disconnected by Mint Zekoll '22
a full-length play, in partial fulfillment of Mint’s senior comprehensive project
Directed by Amanda McRaven
Deanna and Cassie broke up months ago. Yet they now find themselves stuck in Cassie’s mess of an apartment, locked in from the outside. The situation forces them to explore the delicate nuances and comedic contradictions of why they came together, and why they fell apart. And all the while, an inexplicable force terrorizes them - does it come from within or without?
A double-bill of short performance pieces
Grass Crown by Julia Carrigan '25
Directed by Gina Young
Part meditation, part performance art, part theatrical exploration of life in quarantine, this short piece focuses on Sara With and H. Loneliness and longing power their gentle, but insistent attempts to make sense of a life on hold. Of how we can be so still when the world around us does nothing but move. Or vice-versa.
Drown With Me by Jaiyenan English '24
Directed by Leelee Jackson
When Laila is young, she falls in love. Love is easy but loving isn't, and loss is harder still. Now she waits on the beach for the tide to bring love back to her. An ode to water and generational lessons.
Julia Carrigan is a filmmaker and mathematician who really loves God. She spends her time asking honest questions, staring at google calendar, and trying her best to follow the example of Muhammad, peace and blessings be upon him.
Lily Abha Cratsley is ... a playwright now! She has been performing since she was born and is passionate about art, activism, and art as activism. Her identity as a second-generation Indian American is near and dear to heart, which she explores in her play ABCD.
Jaiyenan English '24 is a Music major from Illinois. Drown With Me, their first play, celebrates water, love, and generational mistakes.
Sophie Steinberg is a junior from Brooklyn, New York. She is a writer, sometimes journalist, sometimes bike mechanic and sometimes Economics major. This is her first play and it is dedicated to all of her best friends, her hometown of NYC, and all of the bakeries in Carroll Gardens.
Mint Zekoll is a senior Theater and Cognitive Science double major, Neuroscience minor from all over the world, but mostly Germany. They are an actor, writer, dancer, and a triple water sign, so naturally, expect some exhaustingly intense emotional material!
This is Braedon's second year producing the New Play Festival! Braedon Hatt is a Senior from Worcester, MA, majoring in English with a minor in Theater. Braedon is excited about joining the creative and technical elements of new play development. He can't wait for members of the Occidental community and beyond to enjoy the pieces from our student playwrights this year.
Stephi Howard (she/they) is a Senior Critical Theory major, Theater minor hailing from Atlanta, Georgia. Most recently, she helped assistant directed the Occidental College Theater department devised Zoom show, Trope: Fear is the Villain. She is very excited to help produce the New Play Festival this semester!
Support for the New Works Festival provided in part by Omar's Cookie Jar.