When the going gets tough, the tough get creative. A case in point –Westchester Collaborative Theater (WCT), celebrating its 10th anniversary, is presenting its first virtual event, “COVID Diaries: Notes From the Frontlines,” a mix of 11 original short plays and monologues inspired by recent events, written by WCT members and featuring WCT actors. The production will stream live Saturday, June 27 at 8 p.m.
“It’s known that in every crisis there is an opportunity,” says WCT executive director Alan Lutwin. ‘The talent and creativity of WCT member writers and actors will not be silent. They will be heard loud and strong through this virtual event. Further, we hope to reach an audience spanning at least the nation, possibly even beyond.” Lutwin notes that WCT has been continuing its tradition of holding labs for playwrights and actors virtually since April. These have been attended by members across the nation, including those in Puerto Rico, Florida, Oregon and Louisiana.
To enable the widest audience to participate and, with sensitivity to the hard times many are experiencing, the production will be offered free, although WCT is requesting donations to help with operating expenses during the crisis.
The showcase is being co-produced by Lutwin and WCT member playwright Carol Mark. The pieces will be directed by WCT members Susan Ward, Nate Flower and Melissa Nocera. WCT member Julia LaVerde will serve as stage manager. Betsy Klampert is WCT’s business manager. The actors include Missy Flower, Susan Ward, Julie Griffin, Elaine Hartel, Anne Hammond, Mike Meth, Rebecca Werner, Maiysha Jones Reilly, Dameon Reilly, Christine Fonsale, Sean Weil, Scott Faubel, Emily Aronoff, Rick Apicella, Enid Breis and Marisa Lowe.
The plays, all dealing with the coronavirus in ways dramatic, comedic, and somewhere in-between, are:
“The Rash” by Enid Breis and Bob Zaslow – A woman talks to her psychotherapist to help her understand why she is so tormented during these turbulent times;
“Snapshot/America” by Elaine Hartel –A mother joins a protest at the White House to reopen business and spur the economy;
“The Remaining Pleasures” by Stephen and Sandra Hersh – Divorced for more than 30 years, Shirley and Marvin share their different lives over FaceTime;
“Hugs” by Shelley Lerea – Two people discover how to hug, when hugging is not allowed;
“One of Those People” by Carol Mark – An innocent stroll down the multipurpose everyday cleaner aisle… What could go wrong?;
“COVID Singles Meet” by Susan Ward and Julie Griffin – A catfish on a dating website catches more than she was expecting;
“Perspective” by Evelyn Mertens – Who has the advantage point? It’s all in the eye of the beholder;
“Coronavirus in the Kitchen” by Schuyler Bishop – Are the germs outsmarting the wipes?;
“The Bookstore” by Serena Norr – When a woman’s ex shows up at her new dream bookstore, tensions reveal connections that refuse to be shelved;
“To Write, or Not to Write” by Barbara Dana – A writer struggles to work at a time of great tragedy and unrest;
“Love in Quarantine” by Kimberly Mallory – While fear and uncertainty ravages the inner city, an engaged couple struggles to cope with the fragility of life and the possibility that all may not go as they had planned.
To see this live-streamed production, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org and a link will be emailed to you prior to June 27. For more, on WCT, which will return to its black box theater at 23 Water St. in Ossining when it is safe to do so, see wctheater.org.