A tradition that has been missing for the past four years at Indiana University of Pennsylvania will return 8 p.m. Friday in the Waller Hall Studio Theater.
24-Hour Theater will be hosted this year by Alpha Psi Omega, the honors dramatic fraternity, to bring back a tradition that has been passed down from class to class.
“This event is something that holds near and dear to my heart,” Amos Glass (senior, theater) said. “I was a part of this tradition as a freshman and wanted to bring it back this year to give new theater majors and younger theater lovers a place to explore and create theater in a cool, innovative way.”
The event will start Friday with the writers having approximately 10 hours to write their shows.
Then, they will meet with the directors at 6 a.m. Saturday.
Throughout the night, the writers will be given prompts for every hour that they are writing. By Saturday morning, the writers must have a 10-page script with all six prompts.
Around this time, the actors will be arriving to take on their roles and have time to rehearse before show time at 8 p.m.
All day will be designated to rehearsals and final touches for the night performance.
“This 24-hour experience is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity,” Erica Harding (senior, theater) said. “Here is a chance for young performers, writers and directors to come together to think on impulse and to open their minds to a new experience.”
Theater as a profession is constantly evolving, as well as theater departments across the nation. IUP’s theater department is constantly trying to come up with new ways to innovate without following the norm, Glass said.
Prompts in the past have been as vivid as asking the writers to include “Bazinga” 18 times or product placement.
Harding experienced the event as a freshman, like Glass, and enjoyed the unexpectedness of the night.
“Performances normally have weeks of rehearsal to ensure that the same play is happening every night, but this is live theater,” Harding said. “Anything can happen, from someone falling down the steps to someone spilling water. We must know how to react and understand the audience entirely.”
Coffee and light snacks will be provided throughout the process, with free refills for the writers.
“It’s theater in the rawest of forms,” Harding said. “We can’t wait to see you there.”