Thursday, Nov. 3 – PlayFest!
Plays are like a nation’s unconscious mind. All of us absorb the news every day – politics, current events, social trends – but playwrights craft that material into dreams of what might happen or what could happen, and seeing the finished product on stage is a daydream-like chance to vicariously experience the life of a third-world dictator, an Indian surrogate mother, a labor organizer in the South or the inventor of suburbia. PlayFest annually offers not only dozens of plays – some staged readings of new works, some created in only 24 hours as Play-in-a-Day, a beloved PlayFest tradition – but also panels on how to make it as a playwright, a keynote address from someone who has (this year, prolific and award-winning playwright and screenwriter Jeffrey Hatcher) and parties, parties, parties. Visit Orlando Shakes’ website for detailed information on this year’s play premieres. – Jessica Bryce Young (Thursday-Sunday at Lowndes Shakespeare Center, 812 E. Rollins St.; 407-447-1700; $28-$49; orlandoshakes.org)