826 Michigan presents student-written play festival 'Five Bowls of Oatmeal'
826michigan and the University of Michigan MFA program in creative writing invites the public to "Five Bowls of Oatmeal" — a festival of one-act plays written by 826 Michigan’s world-renowned guild of 11- to 15-year-old playwrights. The event is scheduled for Monday, November 22, from 7:30-9 p.m. at the Lydia Mendelssohn Theatre, 911 North University Avenue.
The evening is sponsored by Above the Treeline, Kroger and University Office Technologies (UTEC). Proceeds benefit 826michigan, a local nonprofit writing and tutoring center providing free literacy programs to students age 6-18 in Southeast Michigan.
826michigan has recruited local actors and special famous and not-so-famous guests to perform five one-act plays, which were written this summer by students in a five-week creative writing workshop called “Me: Wanna write a play? You: Yes, with all my heart. Me: Excellent.” Taught by local playwright and educator Anne Heintz, the workshop led students through the playwright’s process of planning, writing, and revision — a process that will be completed as students see their plays performed by professional actors.
"The playwriting workshop I attended was my first experience with 826 Michigan, and it was outstanding!” said student Hanel Baveja (age 14) of Huron High School, who wrote a play about a conversation between four books. "Writing a play is a whole different game than writing short stories, so it was definitely a new experience. I am really looking forward to seeing my play performed by professional actors.”
In addition to the script-in-hand staged readings of the plays, student playwrights will be interviewed by University of Michigan MFA candidate Joe Horton to gain insight into their writing process.
“Everything about this event is just incredibly exciting to us,” says 826 Michigan executive director Amanda Uhle. “We get the opportunity to showcase the high-quality work our students produce; students get to see their plays performed on stage; and the audience gets a lovely evening of theater. We hope Ann Arbor will love these plays as much as we do.”