Festival showcases the innovative, hilarious, profound

  • Tue Jul 10th, 2012 7:23pm

By Dale Burrows For the Weekly Herald

The rubber meets the road this weekend when Alternative Stages presents the Driftwood Players’ third annual Festival of Shorts.

Theatergoers and three judges will decide the fate of eight competing scripts selected from more than 180 submitted from around the world. Believe it: No one knows what is going to happen.

Alternative will stage the eight 15-minute scripts. Audiences on Friday and Saturday nights will each vote for their favorite. Judges on Saturday night will vote for their top three. The winners will be announced Saturday night.

The setup is simple but underscore “live” in live theater.

The script is the thing. Yet friends in seats could vote for friends on stage. Judges clash. A crowd-pleasing production could flatter a script. Prides and prejudices figure in. And who knows that else. Odds-makers in Vegas would have a tough time calling this one.

That said, I wouldn’t change a thing.

Spotlighting scripts is recognizing work done alone and with only imagination and the hope that something will come of it. Ego has no place. Honesty is all.

Kudos to producers Keith A. Gehrig and Carissa Meisner Smit and directors David Alan Morrison, Gehrig, Roy Arauz, Ted Jaquith and Diane McClure. The work these folks put in is too staggering to contemplate.

Hats off to judges Mark Kuntz from Western Washington University’s drama department and Elena Hartwell, rising professional playwright, and also from yours truly, a poet and reviewer, a tip of the hat.

This is my third year. Call it fun time, party time, Driftwood Players Festival of Shorts – it is all the same, guaranteed.

Reactions? Comments? Email Dale Burrows at entertainment@weeklyherald.com.

Festival of Shorts

WHEN: 8 p.m. July 13 and 14

WHERE: Wade James Theatre, 950 Main St., Edmonds

TICKETS: $12; call 425-774-9600 or visit www.driftwoodplayers.com