Playfest: The Harriett Lake Festival of New Plays
Through April 17
Orlando Shakespeare Theater
512 E. Rollins St.
ticket prices vary, see website for complete details
For some people, the thrill of the theater is all the pomp and circumstance - big, shiny productions with big names everyone knows and loves. For those people, there's Broadway. But for many, the thrill of the theater is in the thing itself - the process of writing a play and nurturing it from fledgling to full-blown production. For those people, there's Playfest.
For 10 days, from April 8-17, Playfest dissects the process by which one creates a theatrical production. It begins on April 8 with a keynote discussion with playwright Mark Brown, a former Orlando resident whose plays include Around the World in 80 Days and The Trial of Ebenezer Scrooge, and ends on April 17 with a free panel in which playwrights will examine the role of the producer in developing a new play. On all the days in between, the public can get involved in the development of new plays by attending script readings and offering feedback to the actors and directors (attendance for each reading is $5); attending workshops that help get a play from reading stage to production stage (Mark Brown's new play Don Quixote will be one of the plays being workshopped during Playfest, $10 per workshop); and attend special events and fundraisers (Play in a Day Fun-Raiser with Beth Marshall, in which a play is rehearsed, produced and staged in 24 hours, $10, and Fringe 101: How to Fringe, also with Beth Marshall, $20).