Wednesday, April 17, 2002 Volume 67, Issue 132



UH playwrights' work finally makes its way to the stage

Curtain Call

Geronimo Rodriguez

As the props are placed and the lights dim, words and actions are staged to illustrate the ideas of an aspiring playwright. One would think the chance
to debut a written work in such a skilled manner is far from achievable, but for students of the Edward Albee New Playwrights Workshop 2002, the
hopes have become reality.

Pin Lim/ The Daily Cougar

Community actor Ted Pfister (left) and UH theater graduate Mary-Margaret Allen rehearse for A Work in Granite, one of five plays chosen by Edward

"I think we can help (playwrights) see their work with honesty and clarity," Albee said. "Remember, a play is only theoretical until a writer knows how the
audience responds."

Albee, a renowned playwright, helms the project and contributes his knowledge to the program, which is intended to enrich the learning experience for

"Mr. Albee has a long reputation for encouraging young playwrights and he puts a tremendous amount of time into the workshop every year he has
come," graduate student and producer of this year's workshop Carol Worsnop said.

"(Albee) chooses plays for development and Dr. Berger (director of UH's School of Theatre) recommends directors for the plays," Worsnop said. "Then
Mr. Albee will match up playwright and director during the beginning of the spring semester."

The playwrights whose work will be featured are Dennis Young (White Phosphorous), Richard Epley (Trifecta), Jason Price (Days Like This), Jere
Pfister (A Work in Granite) and James D. Porto (Reddeathdotcom).

Both UH students and community actors are invited to casting auditions.

"The plays have gained a reputation over the years so that people who work in the Houston area watch out for the auditions and specifically come out
for them," Worsnop said.

The aspiring playwrights work closely with Albee and the directors to ensure that their work is expressed the way in which they intended.

"We just make sure the directors know it isn't their job to change the writers' work," Albee said.

An experienced cast, however, benefits both the production and the writer's work.

"Ultimately it's the playwrights' show that the directors are interpreting, but when you have intelligent actors, their input can be very helpful to the
process," Worsnop said.

The cooperative effort also gives students of the theater department a chance to experience their craft on another level.

"It gives our crew and actors and stage managers an opportunity to work in a professional environment," Worsnop said. "For many of them, this is their
first time they've worked in such an environment.

"Theater is the ultimate collaborative art and this is an opportunity for students to experience the entire theater process."

UH's School of Theatre and the Stages Repertory Theatre will present the five plays from Friday through April 28 at the Stages Repertory Theatre. The
theater is located at 3201 Allen Parkway.

For more information, call the UH School of Theatre box office at (713) 743-2929 or Stages at (713) 527-8243.

Acting 101

UH School of Theatre's Jim Huston and Tom Prior will showcase the talent of their First Year Acting class from 2 to 4:30 p.m. this Friday and April 26 in
the Jose Quintero Theatre Lab on campus.

The students will perform 10- to 15-minute plays as part of a grade for the acting course.

Admission is free.

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