Local actors have the chance to audition for a part in the annual Take Ten Festival this weekend, Dec. 16-17. The event highlights the work of two exceptional young playwrights from our own valley as well as top-performing graduate students from prestigious programs across the country.
The festival is the culmination of the Theater Masters’ Aspiring Playwrights Competition, which spans across high schools in the Roaring Fork Valley from Aspen down to Glenwood Springs. The two lucky winners get to workshop their work on stage with help from esteemed mentors.
Theater Masters also invites the chosen MFA students to Aspen and gives them “professional guidance from distinguished theater talent such as John Lithgow, Kathleen Chalfant and our own Abe Koogler,” as well as access to actors in the Roaring Fork Valley.
As Maria Aparo, managing director of Theater Masters, puts it, “This first part of our playwrights' journey offers crucial development opportunities to learn how to present a play in front of an audience and have their piece workshopped by a director and talented cast of actors.”
This year, Theaters Masters is very excited to welcome Pulitzer Prize winner David Auburn, who will be helping the young writers hone their craft in preparation for their “professional launch into the theatrical community in New York City,” says Aparo.
There is much to gain for local performers as well. The actors selected for the show will work closely with the playwrights, directors and castmates as they transform into their characters. As Aparo says, “The acting community of the Roaring Fork Valley is an integral part of this process, and we would be honored to have local talent participate in this year's festival!”
The plays hand-picked for this year’s festival fall across a multitude of topics. One combines adolescent love with extraterrestrial life. Another centers on the Soviet Secret Police in the time of Stalin. A third pursues family dynamics in suburbia. They are funny, sentimental and, most of all, full of magnificent prose and ideas which will leave you thinking long after the curtain is drawn.
The Take Ten Festival — whose name comes from each play’s 10-minute duration — will take place in February 2018. This will mark the 12th year of the festival, which has become a beloved event for the local community. After the festival, the graduate students are “given three months to rewrite their plays based on the feedback they received in Aspen,” which leads to a “professional Equity Showcase production of their plays” in New York City.
The auditions will be held in the Aspen Square conference room at 617 E. Cooper St. on Dec. 16 and 17. There are limited spots available on Saturday evening, as well as slots from 10am-2pm on Sunday. If interested, please sign up on the Theater Masters' website: theatermasters.org.
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