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Queens Chronicle

Woodside Players host a series of short works

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Posted: Thursday, May 30, 2019 10:30 am

It’s free! It’s unpredictable! And it’s about to happen right here in our own backyard.

It’s the Woodside Players of Queens Summer 2019 Play Festival, set to take place on June 15 at 2 p.m. at the Queens Library in Long Island City.

The event marks the 10th or 11th festival under the three-year-old group’s banner, according to festival coordinator Johnny Culver. Prior festivals have focused on readings of both full-length plays as well as classic short works. The most recent event took place at the Queens Library in Forest Hills in March, which Culver said drew “a huge audience.”

The upcoming festival will feature between seven and nine scenes, Culver said, mostly written by festival first-timers.

“We get submissions all the time,” he said. “We keep them on file and contact the playwrights when we’re putting something together.”

Each entry will run no longer than 10 minutes. Scenes and monologues, written by authors from the five boroughs and Long Island, will make up the program.

There is no cost for a playwright to enter the festival. While the Players provide a venue, each writer is expected to self-produce his or her own play, bringing on board actors and a director to make it come to life. In many cases, the playwright serves double duty, most usually helming the production. Rehearsals are conducted independently, with the final results unveiled on the day of the performance.

If past festivals are any indication, some of the works will be memorized while others will be performed with scripts in hand.

As usual, a wide variety of styles and themes will be represented in the upcoming festival. One piece, “Time to a Phantom,” was written by Honolulu native Zachariah Ezer, 24, now a resident of Crown Heights in Brooklyn.

It’s a two-character piece, he said, focusing on a landlord and a tenant, a young Brooklyn man whose bathroom is haunted. “It’s a ghost story” Ezer said, a horror tale with comedic elements.

Ezer said he has already written a number of plays, during his college years and beyond. This particular one, he said, will be performed in no fewer than three venues in June. Besides Long Island City, it will also be seen in Washington, DC and Houston, his adopted hometown.

Some of the other entries scheduled for June 15 are “Wild Weekend,” by Fernando Buzzar Segall; “Alzheimer’s Diary,” by Steve Gold; “Unstoppable,” by Ed Adomaitis; and “Your Digital Past,” by Tanya Sharma.

Summer Play Festival
When: Sat., June 15, 2-4 p.m.
Where: Long Island City Library, 37-44 21 St.
Entry: Free. (631) 898-4205,

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