Farris had previously written during Insomniac Theatre, a workshop by student-run company Wisdom Tooth Theatre. At Insomniacs, students write and produce one-scene productions within 24 hours.
She said she’s written 18 productions at Insomniacs, and she’s acted in four and stage managed three shows at AU.
The time span has allowed Farris to expand her talents and her vision.
“It’s long-term, so you get a lot more feedback,” she said. “It’s a much higher creative process.”
In his 18 years at AU, Johnstone said only six original student plays have been produced.
Farris is the real deal, he said, and this production will put her in a position to perhaps pick up an agent and distributor. Student-produced plays offer the opportunity to originate roles, whereas students, actors and the audience already have certain expectations for classics like William Shakespeare productions.
“Bother” is Johnstone’s last AU play since the university decided to cut the theater as a program because of financial challenges and declining enrollment.
Johnstone said he has mixed emotions about leaving AU, but ending his time at the school with a student-written production is the best scenario possible.
“I love developing these things,” he said. “That first production is always instrumental in how a play is formed on the stage.”
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