Students Write One-Acts to be Performed


Autumn Fatovich, News Editor

The Sahuaro Theater Department is holding one act plays performed by  the beginning classes, but this year there is a twist: two of the one-acts to be performed are written by student directors, Manchester Bradley and Nora Thompson. The funding, as many know, for the Fine Arts Department is very, very low. The theater would not be able to fund all the shows this year with the amount of student directors taking the course. Nora and Manchester gladly stepped up and took responsibility of writing their own one acts at the request of Ms. Rossmeissl, the theater director.

Nora Thompson’s one act called Oddly Haunted is about a contest in a haunted house.  “Basically, it’s a ‘who can last the longest’ kind of thing,” she says. “But the people get “rid” of each other in multiple dramatic fashions.” This is a 15-20 minute play.

Nora Thompson happily said that “Sometimes it’s the only reason I want to go to school in the morning. I love being director.” The connection to her kids is strong, so I asked if she wrote her play with certain students in mind to play the role. “I did kind of, but then as they auditioned, I noticed different actors would be better in different roles. Casting worked out better that way and they surprised me,” she said.

Manchester Bradley’s one act is called Miss Teen Queen. This is about a beauty pageant gone wrong. Someone keeps sabotaging the contestants and forces a backstage tech to compete. She’s pushed into a world of crazy extreme feminists and ditzy girls. This play is thirteen scenes in all.

Bradley’s eye lit up when I asked about her kids in the Theater Department. “I love being a director, it can be hectic, but at the end of the day it’s a worthwhile challenge. My kids often have a hard time remembering to be calm and quiet, but they have my love.” The love of her kids made me wonder how she created the script, either without certain actors in mind or with. “When I originally started writing my play I did have people in mind for specific characters, but during auditions people really stepped up and surprised me.”