Lack of organization forces Playwright's cancellation


A long-standing DePauw tradition will not happen this spring due to a lack of time and formal organization. The Playwright's Festival, which occurs every fall and spring semester, will most likely return in the fall.

Junior Ann Marie Elliott, who was the main organizer for the event this semester, said a lot of changes happened over the course of the semester including the organization of the actual event. 

"There was a worry that we weren't going to be able to have it at all at first," Elliott said.

Because of this problem, Elliott volunteered to be in charge of Playwright's this semester. However, the participants weren't ready when the time for performances rolled around, so they pushed the date back. However, the group kept experiencing logistics difficulties.

"...So the decision was to either put on a shabby two-bit show or not put on a show at all," Elliott said.

Elliott said there were originally seven plays that were selected for production, and when the date changed, two plays dropped out. When it came close to curtain call, there were only three shows.

As for the future of Playwright's, Elliott remains hopeful that the festival will continue for many years at DePauw. Elliott said she is sad about the festival but understands it is for the best.

"I think it's really unfortunate that it ended up not happening this semester," she said. "It's not really a question of whether or not it will happen next semester because I have no doubt it will. I'm just really sad that we had to call it off."

Freshman Julianne O'Brien was disappointed by the news, as she was assigned to be an actor and a director. O'Brien said she could not participate because when the dates were switched, she could not perform on Thursday night due to a class, and similar time conflicts happened with her actors in the play she was directing.

"It's a shame everything couldn't work out, but with everyone being on different schedules with different commitments, it didn't," O'Brien said.  

The Playwright's Festival was supposed to take place this weekend, and the festival features works written, directed and performed by students. Elliott said the experience allowed her to combine her passions. 

"It's something that's really important to me, especially since I'm a writer and interested in theater," said Elliott, who has participated in Playwright's since her freshman year. "I really hope that it will work out better next semester, and I feel like it wasn't given enough priority to a lot of people. It happened at the wrong time, I guess."