August 5, 2020
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Wired competition brings hilarity and heart

By Kelly Vena
Staff Writer

The Decker Social Space was brimming with excitement on Saturday, Jan. 30, for the spring edition of WIRED performances. WIRED, an All College Theater-sponsored event, is a twenty-four-hour theatre competition in which six teams of writers create stories following specific themes and twists, with actors rehearsing and performing the plays the following day. The plays are judged by three alumni of the College, who pick winners for various awards, such as Best Actor and Best Show.

The theme and sub-theme of this WIRED competition was magazines and childhood games, respectively. The plot of each play must revolve around these themes.

“The theme and sub-theme surpisingly made it easier to write,” said freshman women’s and gender studies major Molly Knapp, who wrote the play “More to Life than Rope…” alongside fellow freshman creative writing major Hope Simiris. “Before having those restrictions in place, we just had too many ideas.”

Writers were also challenged to incorporate five twists into their story, which included posing a regular question as a “promposal” and using a Clue murder weapon as a prop.

“The twists actually came in at a good time in our script, and they enriched it with ideas we never would’ve come up with,” Knapp said.

Both the writers and actors were challenged to succeed under the time constraints of only a few hours.

“The struggle was more in the ‘creating a story’ than ‘overnight,’” Knapp said. “We actually cycled through a couple different plot concepts before settling on the one that ended up onstage around 10 p.m.”

While the actors were expected to work all night to create a story, the actors went to work all day to bring it to life.

“The challenge of learning your lines and actions is one of my favorite parts of WIRED,” said senior English secondary education major Steven Munoz, who has written and acted for WIRED multiple times throughout his college career. “It’s a different challenge than writing.”

All of the writers’ and actors’ hard work paid off once it was time for the performances. Knapp’s “More to Life than Rope…” received big laughs from the audience. This play, whose magazine was Rolling Stone and childhood game was double Dutch, centered around a rivalry between two children’s competitive double Dutch teams. Mike Krakower was awarded Best Actor for his role as the competitive and self-absorbed coach of one of the teams.

The second play, “The Good, the Bad, and the Deck,” focused on a Good Housekeeping editor in-chief’s desperate attempt at reclaiming her job by helping her neighbors through the use of witchcraft. Its theme and sub-theme were Good Housekeeping and dodgeball.

Following the hilarious charm of “The Good, the Bad, and the Deck” was “Scotch on the Rocks,” which depicted an American hopscotch team’s heroic efforts to defeat the famed German team, “Go-Step-O.” The theme and sub-theme of this work were Sports Illustrated and hopscotch. “Scotch on the Rocks” won big with the audience as well as the judges — it swept the categories of Best Director, Best Stage Manager and Best Show.

“I think all of the plays were a big success. I’m proud of what everyone did,” Munoz said.

After the intermission, the cast of “The Legend of Cubera Island” took the stage. The play revolved around a group of people, brought to a tropical island for various reasons, and their attempts at thwarting an evil plot. Its theme and sub-theme were National Geographic and Go Fish. The wacky antics of this play awarded its creators, Rachel Fikslin and Ken Abes, the title of Best Writers.

“The Perfect Woman Hunt” was an empowering work centering around a young woman as she is suddenly whisked away to a laboratory dedicated to creating the perfect woman. She, along with the six other girls she saves from brainwashing, are able to overthrow the lab’s work as well as reject society’s standards of female beauty. The theme and sub-theme of this show were Cosmopolitan and manhunt.

“Jane’s First Day,” the final show of the night and winner of Best Ensemble, also won the audience’s heart with its characters’ unforeseen connections with each other and the references to soda brands throughout the story. It details the hectic yet unforgettable events of Jane’s first day at an internship for Fresca, a self-proclaimed evil boss in the entertainment industry. Freshman Carlie Horton won Best Actress for her role as Betty, an outcast who is later revealed to be Fresca’s daughter. The theme and sub-theme of this show was Entertainment Weekly and 7-Up.

“Everyone involved contributed to the success of our show,” Munoz, who portrayed washed up hip-hop artist Dr. Pepper in “Jane’s First Day,” said. “The director, the actors and their talent, and of course our writers, Brooke Buonauro and Kelly Corbett. A show all starts on paper and they were able to create something amazing for us to work with.”

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