Recommended by Jessica Austgen

  • The Last Month of William Joseph Dale
    2 Dec. 2018
    A lovely two-hander about new love and the flurry of emotions that accompany it—excitement, frustration, joy, anxiousness—made all the more poignant by the knowledge that one half of this couple is doomed from the start. Squire’s play dances through the first/last days if this relationship with delicate dialogue, complex characters and a sad sense of longing for the unfulfilled potential of a love affair that was never allowed to fully bloom.
  • Burst
    6 Aug. 2018
    I had the privilege of seeing a staged reading of BURST this past weekend with the R.E.A.C.H. program at the Utah Shakespeare festival and it was absolutely captivating. Bublitz has crafted three complex female roles that are constantly showing new, unexpected facets as the play unfolds. This three hander touches on some heavy current issues, but never loses sight of the human hearts and relationships that are the core of the drama.
  • Storm Clouds for Lonely Hearts
    26 Jul. 2018
    STORM CLOUDS FOR LONELY HEARTS is a lovely, non-linear short play that gives us a glimpse of the budding relationship between two women on the day/night of their first date. Hernandez' dialogue is realistic, but he finds a natural poetry in the small talk and awkward starts of an initial encounter with a potential lover. Two great roles for young women.
  • We See What Happen
    26 Jul. 2018
    I had the opportunity to see a reading of the play in May 2018 and it was such a moving, enlightening and, above all else, funny piece. The Jonathan character is likable and relatable and gives us an easy way into this story of immigration, love, loss and superheroes. So funny, so charming, so heartfelt. And Granny is a such a rich, fun character for an older actress.
  • Back Cover
    13 Apr. 2018
    Hageman knocks it out of the park with Back Cover, a deceptively simple script that appears to be a coming of age story (a very well-done coming of age story, at that) that takes a simple turn and becomes so much more. This one act draws us in with appealing characters and sparkling dialogue, which makes the climatic shift of the play incredibly powerful and gut-wrenching.
  • The Thought Doesn't Count
    31 Mar. 2018
    In this short play, Hageman takes us on a nutshell of a journey with a young(ish) couple as they finally explore their grief with the help of a sock monkey and some lovely, sparkling dialogue. It's beautiful to see a play that, while still dealing with tragedy and sadness, truly comes from a place of love. Hageman's dialogue is snappy and fun, giving a wry realism to her two characters. Highly recommended for any short play festival.
  • Once Upon a Line
    5 Dec. 2017
    Not only has Bohannon given us a fun two-hander full of snappy banter about fandom and literary tastes, but she also illuminates the fears and hopes of these two young men who are dragging their feet on the path to inevitable adulthood as they literally shuffle through the line for the final Harry Potter book. This is a great selection for a college one act festival.
    7 Sep. 2017
    Wow. Horse Thief is a gut-punch of a two-hander that immediately introduces us to compelling characters with sky-high stakes. Whitley has given us a tightly-crafted thriller that asks the impossible question: how do you make amends when you've done the unforgivable?
  • The Mrs. Wheatland Pageant
    6 Sep. 2017
    With her sparkling dialogue and rollicking pace, Erickson has delivered a sharp comedy that offers three great roles for actresses with comedic chops. Under the layers of fun and farce, however, are four real human beings shedding the weight of other people's expectations and discovering the courage to be their truest selves, even under the intense lens of small town scrutiny.
  • Crazy Patterns
    3 Sep. 2017
    Crazy Patterns is a heart-rending journey with a family as they attempt to reassemble the pieces of their lives after an unspeakable tragedy. McCarl writes smart, snappy dialogue that endears these characters to audiences (or readers) as we get to know them and discover the exact nature of their personal pain.
    Extra good stuff: There is a lovely father-daughter relationship between the teenage character and her step-father that hit me in an unexpected way.
    Great show for small theaters, meaty roles for three performers.