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The Arts

Weston Playhouse premieres ‘One Room’

Leading stage professionals create 14 short, one-person plays that respond to the present moment

The box office at the Weston Playhouse remains closed for the summer, but staff will be returning voicemails left at 802-824-5288. Information: westonplayhouse.org.

Weston Playhouse Theatre Company launches its Reimagined 2020 Season with the online premiere of One Room, the first project in its new works initiative, Weston Writers.

One Room explores the events of this year by looking at our homes as spaces of possibility and creativity. The video streams are available free.

In May, Weston commissioned the leading playwrights, directors, and actors in the U.S. to create 14 short, one-person plays that respond to the present moment and explore the questions, “What makes a home? What stories might be hiding in its ordinary rooms?”

Each writer was joined by an acclaimed director and actor to record the monologues, and the complete series premieres on Weston’s YouTube channel Friday Aug. 7 at 7:30 p.m.

A live pre-show discussion at 7 p.m. features Executive Artistic Director Susanna Gellert and select artists whose work appears that evening. Learn more at westonplayhouse.org/oneroom.

One Room includes 2020 Obie Award winners Kenny Leon, Whitney White, Liza Colón-Zayas, and David Cale; as well as Pulitzer finalist and Obie, Drama Desk, and Lucille Lortel Award winner Will Eno; Guggenheim and Obie Award winner Dael Orlandersmith; and Peabody Award winner Alena Smith. Viewers will recognize screen and Broadway actors Alfre Woodard, Daphne Rubin-Vega, and Dana Delany.

“In this moment when we cannot gather at the theater, we wanted to connect our audience with the artists who are so important to the conversations we will all be having in the coming years, who are going to show us the way forward,” Gellert said in a news release.

The project began in May, and Gellert said that “one of the fascinating things about this project is to see artists respond to the world around them almost in real time. The immediacy and poetry of each of these short plays is incredibly compelling, and the range of stories and approaches is breathtaking.”

Performances in the series:

The Actor, by David Cale. Directed by Lee Sunday Evans; starring Marin Ireland.

Memories of New York and Other Things that Are Gone, by Andy Bragen. Directed by Knud Adams; starring Josh Hamilton.

Executioners, by Torrey Townsend. Directed by Celine Song; starring Zi Alikhan, Miles G. Jackson, Aaron Rossini.

Front & Back, by Vichet Chum. Directed by Whitney White; starring Susan Park.

A Room of Nobody Else’s, by Will Eno. Directed by Kenny Leon; starring Alfre Woodard.

Room for Work, by Melissa Li. Directed by Mei Ann Teo; starring Shannon Tyo.

Before The Witching Hour/Pandemic Blues, by Dael Orlandersmith. Directed by Jade King Carroll; starring Daphne Rubin-Vega.

The Visitations, by Jen Silverman. Directed by Mike Donahue; starring Dana Delany.

Look at the Walls, by Charly Evon Simpson. Directed by Colette Robert; starring Erin Roché.

Goodnight Nobody, by Alena Smith. Directed by Susanna Gellert; starring Michael Braun.

Zoom Intervention, by Noelle Viñas. Directed by Estefanía Fadul; starring Liza Colón-Zayas.

Mirror Game, by Else Went. Directed by Emma Rosa Went; starring Juliana Canfield.

Rita, by Josh Wilder. Directed by Reginald L. Douglas; starring Jakeem Powell.

To Do, by Kit Yan. Directed by Peter J. Kuo; starring Poppy Liu.

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Originally published in The Commons issue #572 (Wednesday, July 29, 2020). This story appeared on page A7.

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