Eclectic mix for annual 10-minute play festival

A man believes he’s Batman and goes on a killing spree. A woman tells her children she has a secret lover, but they’re not sure he’s real. Another woman seeks a spirit guide... and three answer the call.

Spring is here, and that means it’s time for EMU Theatre’s annual 10-minute play festival. The cornucopia of shorts once again has a broad selection of material.

“We’ve got nine 10-minute plays,” says Andrew Stowers, one of the show’s producers. “It’s a pretty eclectic mix.”

EMU’s selection committee received 20 submissions, including entries from both the East and West Coasts.

“But the shows the directors were really interested in were the ones written by Kansas authors,” Stowers says. “We got a lot of great plays from across the country.”

In addition to the three above, the festival also features a farcical treatment of British history, going from Henry VIII and Katherine of Aragon to Shakespeare and Elizabeth in a mere 10 minutes, and another play features a home invasion gone comically wrong. There are also more serious works wherein a man confronts his dying father, and one called “God’s Work” featuring a girl dealing with issues of life and death.

“We’ve got some pretty heavy drama, and some pretty ridiculous comedy,” Stowers says. “This is easily the best group of plays we’ve ever had.”

Between plays, EMU’s improv troupe will be performing to keep things light during the scene changes.

“It’s a really audience-friendly show,” Stowers says. “If you don’t like one play, another one that might appeal will be along in 10 minutes.”

EMU Theatre’s 10-minute play festival, “Snake, Rattle & Role,” run March 22, 23, 29, and 30 in the black box theatre at the Lawrence Arts Center. Curtain is at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are available at the door. A reception follows the opening night performance.

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