2021 Festival Lineup

Main Stage: 81 Minutes

Written and directed by Alexa Higgins and Ian Goff

Dawn hasn’t yet cracked on the Boston horizon. It is March 18, 1990, and at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, something is afoot that will go down in history as one of the world’s most successful and notorious art heists. But right now, it is quiet, save for two police officers, heading this way… In this rip-roaring piece of speculative historical dramedy, co-creators Alexa Higgins and Ian Goff invigorate the heist genre with slapstick antics and a constantly shuffling cast of colourful clowns. Featuring performances from Jilly Hanson, Neomi Iancu Haliva, Jean-Michel Cliche, Ian Goff, and Alexa Higgins

July 22-25, 7:30 p.m., at Theatre New Brunswick’s Open Space Theatre (55 Whiting Road). Tickets will be available at the door for 20$ regular, 15$ senior/student/underwaged. Limited seating available. Contact dev.rockwell19@unb.ca to reserve tickets.

Acting Out: One Act Plays

Life Goes On by Muriel Falkenstein – directed by Julianne Richard

March to June, 2020. Six students are given an assignment, somehow as mundane as it is unthinkable: make a video time capsule, for the strangest year of your life, the one where time is now standing still. Interestingly, life does find a way to happen even if it does so in a tangle. The digital age creates webs across the stage, as love, interpersonal dramas, social conquest, and all the timeless problems of teenagers find new outlets in Zoom chats and journals rife with topical references, as their minds buzz with burning cities, melting ice caps and an increasingly uncertain future. Featuring performances by Nicole Zacharuk, Alex Dawson, Reinaldo Cascante, and Megan Murphy.

MAD About Van Horne by Ron Kelly Spurles – directed by Alex McAllister

It is 100 years ago, and a St. Andrews barn is playing host to a half-baked rehearsal. Grace Mowat and her Music And Drama society are to put on a play about the town hero, railroad magnate and owner of Minister’s Island William Cornelius Van Horne, in the hopes that his widow, (and other folks of fine society,) might take notice. In this ode to both the dignity and misadventures of amateur theatre, the question is thick in the evening air- does it matter? Will anything have changed after the curtains close? Featuring performances by Dani Brun, Brenna Gauthier, Scott Harris, and Josef Addleman.

Life Goes On and MAD About Van Horne will be presented as a series of twin bill performances between July 29-31, 7:30pm, nightly, at Memorial Hall, UNB. Tickets will be available at the door for 15$ regular, 10$ senior/student/underwaged. Limited seating available. Contact dev.rockwell19@unb.ca to reserve tickets.

Taking it to the Streets

A Reunion of Lovers by Brandon Hicks – directed by Hirad Hajilou

The relationship between melodrama and comedy is actually quite simple. If the actors have chemistry, it’s a melodrama, and if they don’t, then it’s comedy, sometimes of the cringe variety. Fortunately for Elaina and Martin, the actors have chemistry. Unfortunately, it may be a bit too much chemistry when there’s a pandemic going on. Maybe a bit too much snot, also. Featuring performances by Carter Scott and Jane Deil.

Graffiti by Madeline Savoie – directed by Cat McCluskey

What is art without a little rebellion? Avery is frustrated with her stodgy art teacher and his unappreciative attitude towards her work. Black and white is not morose; it’s strong, hopeful even. But it needs to be seen. Maybe this piece one would look better on the bathroom wall… Featuring performances by Lara Lewis, Brennan Garnett, and Alice Newling.

Closure by Monika Reddick – directed by Kaylee MacNeil

A mother’s pride can feel like both a hefty reward and a burden to bear. Sitting on a park bench, Margaret feels everything she’s doing is a disappointment, and even if her mom seems to have come in peace, she doesn’t want to hear her ‘could have/ should have’s’ about her ex, Thomas. After all, Margaret was ready for closure, even if her mom isn’t. Featuring performances by Kathleen McGroarty, Cat McCluskey, and Brennan Garnett.

Marionettes by McKenna Boeckner – directed by Nolan Goguen

“You don’t have to go deep into the forests of Hinter Land in order to hear noises like that. Seems like there is always something crying out.” Jess and Connor stand perched on the edge of adulthood, ready for a new beginning. Still, Connor is fixated on everything that’s old. On the death, regrets, and secrets lying in the marsh. Featuring performances by Isaac Gilbert and Amanda Thorne.

Taking it to the Streets will be performed as an hour of outdoor live theatre in Officers Square, Monday-Wednesday July 26-28, at 7:30pm nightly. Tickets by cash donation at the door. Attendees are encouraged to bring portable chairs, and to check social media and the NBActs website an hour – a half hour before the show in case of bad weather. Cancellation conditions typically include moderate-heavy rain and thunderstorms. Contact dev.rockwell19@unb.ca if you have any questions or concerns about our weather policy.

Site Specific

Concrete & Plaster by Neomi Iancu Haliva – directed by Madigan Donovan-Downs

Featuring performances by Raine O’Connor, Sara Lamk and Sarah Mullin.

Tickets by cash donation, at 9pm, July 26-28, at 385 Mazucca’s Lane.

Play Out Loud: Readings of Plays in Development

One Acts and Site Specific (Runners up)

Limbo by Madeline Savoie – directed by Megan Murphy

Waiting in the darkened halls of an abandoned school, sometime long before the lockdown ends, the past and the future both seem tantalizingly close to these high school friends, as they attempt to summon their own ghost…

Ill Advised Capital by Sana Hashmat – directed by Carter Scott

In this far-reaching exploration of the archetypes of class struggle, noble, serf, maid and king find little common ground, but much to fight for on the earth they tread.

Go Ahead and Make Me the Happiest Woman on Earth by Vy Phan – directed by Louis Anthony Bryan

Being a housewife has long been a thankless job, and it’s all the more difficult when your husband has so much trouble mustering up a little romance once in a while. Fed up, Mai asks for a little honesty – she’s been taking diet pills for some time, and wants the truth about how she looks.. But this ‘honesty’ threatens to reveal something more nasty than tactlessness in their relationship, forcing her to take an ‘otherworldly’ approach to marital politics.

High and Middle School Playwriting Contest Winners

She Sssaid by Alex Dawson – directed by Kaitlyn Adair

You may have heard of Medusa, the monster and feminine embodiment of evil in the Greek pantheon. However, that is, as some would say, only the myth of the myth. The real story is dark and much more complicated, mired in the violence of supposed heroes. Only her friends remain to speak truth to power, but doing so comes at a price; who would dare contradict the word of the gods?

The Mushroom Prince by Ava Chamberlain – directed by Raine O’Connor

King Rayfore has a task for Cyril, unenthused as he may be. The prince must find his princess, his ‘special person’ – a simple enough task with the great knight Airick at his side. The problem is, Cyril feels a little ‘eh’ about the whole thing, especially since his father didn’t mention the, uh, indefinite peril.

Ill Advised Capital, The Mushroom Prince, and Limbo will be performed at 2pm July 25th, 385 Mazucca’s Lane, while Go Ahead and Make Me The Happiest Woman in The World, and She Sssaid will be performed at 2pm, July 31st, at the Open Space Theatre. Tickets available by cash donation at the door. Limited seating available. Contact dev.rockwell19@unb.ca for reservations.