My 7th 24-hour play festival

For the 7th time, I was a writer in OVERNIGHT SENSATIONS, the annual 24-hour play project sponsored by Mill Mountain Theatre and the Hollins University Playwrights’ Lab. I’ve been invited a few other times but had schedule conflicts.

Here are some photos to show how the process unfolds.

First, the gear. I always wear the jester’s hat. This year, I added two hats I picked up on my April trip to Australia.

More photos below:

My traditional pre-ceremony meal with fellow writer Ben R. Williams, joined this year by my wife, Katerina, who was one of this year’s directors.

Todd Ristau, who runs the Playwright’s Lab, gathers the troops in the atrium of Center in the Square.

Cats herded into Mill Mountain Theatre.

Ceremonies.

The view from the stage once the writers line up and start drawing directors, cast, genre, setting, and a line we have to use.

The prop table.

Another view of the prop table. Yes, that’s a leg. It got used, just not in mine.

My prompts and cast. I drew a cast with a lot of musical talent so was determined to make use of those. The setting led to a barbershop quartet singing the most famous ghost story of all time — HAMLET.

The view about 2:30 a.m. I finished my draft at 1:57 a.m. and then spent until about 3 a.m. tweaking.

MY PREVIOUS OVERNIGHT SENSATIONS:

2007: STUCK ON YOU, a glue gun gone wrong at prom (no photos available).

2010: A VAMPIRE SOAP OPERA, which is pretty much what it sounds like. (This script recently got produced a second time at a middle school in Maryland.)

2011: STRONG AS A BULL, steroids and baseball, in the 1800s.

2012: THE KEYS TO THE UNIVERSE NEXT DOOR, a Lovecraftian science fiction horror.

2016: THE ZOOKEEPER’S ARM, a murder in the zoo.

2017: THEY ALWAYS BLAME THE SNAKE, a drug-smuggling farce in a zoo.

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