Recommended by Claudia Haas

  • Kim Arthur and the Nerds of the Round Table
    14 Jan. 2018
    This is a sweet riff on video games borrowing cleverly from the King Arthur tale. The play is geared at young performers and all roles offer young thespians a chance to develop character while having fun onstage. I could see this being very popular in middle schools. It could provoke some interesting discussions regarding the constant stereotyping of "nerd" and "cool" so rampant at that age.
    14 Jan. 2018
    "Nobody's safe till everyone is safe." Tackling a play about a hate crime for young audiences isn't easy. Hoke manages to bypass the easy-platitudes and preachy elements that sometimes pepper these plays. Instead, we have smartly-written dialogue and nuanced turnabouts that are unexpected. An added bonus is the ensemble of teen characters that all change and grow as they discover how to be friends. This would be a grand choice for the high school one-act circuit.
  • When You Are a Little Bit Older
    11 Jan. 2018
    This play has so many twists and turns and crossroads and forks in the road - all while sitting in a movie theatre. Don't assume you know where it's going because it pauses and switches gears constantly - just as teens do. It's a delightful coming-of-age/slice of teen life filled with heart and honesty. Fun for the actors to do and equally delightful for their audiences.
  • Go Ask D'Alice
    15 Nov. 2017
    Coping mechanisms can save you. In this unusual play, a woman has created bizarre but healing coping mechanisms to help guide her through grief and loneliness. There are two strong roles for women and a gem of a scene with a subtle reminder to not judge so quickly. Even as you laugh, you will find yourself touched in unexpected ways.
  • Moon in a Barrel
    15 Nov. 2017
    "There's a little bit of magic in that moon." And there's a lot of magic in Moon in a Barrel. It combines the best of fairytales and even better - there is no message. Just pure zany fun. I'd love to see an anthology of Hermann and Faye stories.
  • Putt-Putt
    15 Nov. 2017
    New advertising brilliance: 18 holes of mini golf where the first nine are biblically-themed from the old testament and the last nine are from the new testament. And - if you get a hole in one - the whale vomits up Jonah. You have to love a play that combines putt-putt with the Bible. Silliness is everywhere, secrets are confessed and when you're done grinning with the play - it suddenly all seems plausible. It's a welcome addition to a short play festival.
    15 Nov. 2017
    Two sisters are on a slippery slope and their falling and failing. It's heartbreaking because in a short period of time you have come to care about them and see how much they care about each other. The play does a beautiful job of giving circumstances through show and not tell.
  • Promised Lands
    15 Nov. 2017
    "America divided themselves enough where American could be America." An indictment on the upheaval of our times - extremists in race, religion and sexuality have their own lands - complete with borders and never the twain shall meet. All are accepted within their borders. Separatism rules the day. It's as if the differing comment sections on online news outlets each have their own country. There are two meaty roles for actors with twists and turns for the audience. Intriguing political theatre for these tenuous days.
  • ROOM 27
    15 Nov. 2017
    This is an insightful imagining of the "Club 27," a club no aspiring musician hopes to join. As seven iconic musicians wait (and wait) to play their concert (most have been waiting for decades), hope walks in the door. The play touches on the state of rock 'n roll both "then" and now," the life of the musician who's "made it," the absence of hope and the need to keep hoping. It's a perfect match for universities (all the actors are 27) and ideal for multi-generational audiences. Everyone knows their music. Researching the play would be a joy.
    10 Nov. 2017
    This is such an active monologue - perfect for an audition. It grows and sputters and purrs and shouts. There is so much at play. I loved that there were surprises along the way and how the ending grabs you.