Festival of Short Plays has Local Appeal

David McEwen and Kelly Durfey in "Fire and Rain," one of 10 short plays staged during the NC 10 by 10 festival presented by the Cary Playwrights' Forum and OdysseyStage Theatre.

The Cary Playwrights’ Forum partners with OdysseyStage Theatre to present a new festival of 10-minute plays this summer: NC 10 by 10.

Each group is producing five of the plays, with all 10 being shown at each performance.  Running first at The ArtsCenter in Carrboro July 19-22, the show moves to The Cary Theater for a second weekend, July 26-28.

CPF and OdysseyStage solicited scripts from across the state in early 2018 and received more than six dozen submissions. The 10 winning plays range from a modern retelling of an old folk tale in Ed Southern’s “Ol’ Jack Spooks the Devil” to a meeting with a prescient sock puppet in Rollin Jewett’s “Socky Tells All.” Audiences can expect encounters with a menacing doctor, an advanced ATM and even Hansel and Gretel.

The festival follows in the footsteps of 10 by 10 in the Triangle that ran each summer at The ArtsCenter for 15 years. NC 10 by 10 is different in its emphasis on NC writers.  With two theater companies in two towns, the cast couldn’t be limited to ten actors; 23 local performers are involved in the new production.

Annie Taft, one of the show’s ten directors, says, “when I found out a ten-minute play festival was coming back to the area, I knew I wanted to be a part of it.”

The play she’s directing, “Fire and Rain,” features one of the evening’s notable area references: a café diner mistaken for Chapel Hill’s most famous singer-songwriter.

Performances take place at The ArtsCenter, 300-G East Main St. Carrboro, July 19-21 at 8 p.m., with a Sunday matinee at 3 p.m. July 22. General admission: $10 Thursday, $18 Friday and Saturday, $15 matinees. Tickets are available at artscenterlive.org or by calling their box office, (919) 929-2787.

The second weekend is at The Cary Theatre, 122 E. Chatham St., Cary, July 26-28 at 7:30 p.m., with a matinee at 3 p.m. Saturday, July 28.  General admission: $10 Thursday, $18 Friday and Saturday, $15 matinees. Tickets can be purchased at thecarytheater.com or by calling (919) 462-2051.

For more information, visit odysseystage.org or caryplaywrightsforum.org

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