UpStart 2018

UpStart poster image of broken mirror with pieces showing a subway train, a man's eye and a hopscotch gridPerformances: March 14 - 17, 2018

Time: 7:30 p.m.

Venue: Theatre of the Arts

UpStart is a bi-annual one-act play festival.  This year, the festival featured three exciting, new theatrical works created and realized by students.

Hamlet Reworked adapted and performed by Gareth Potter*

The Game of String written by alumna Jenn Addesso

Hopscotch written by Joanna Cleary

The performance began in the lobby of the Modern Languages building at 7:30pm with the first of three installments by Gareth Potter as Hamlet in Hamlet Reworked. Set outside the traditional performance space, this solo presentation of a classic text reworked explored mortality, grief, and the nature of live theatre. By deconstructing and reassembling Shakespeare’s Hamlet in a personal manner, what more can we learn about Shakespeare’s most famous play?  The second installment occurred during intermission in the lobby, with the final installment closing the evening onstage.

Following his performance, the audience moved into the theatre for director Brooke Barnes’ production of The Game of String. The Game of String explored the relationship between how we curate ourselves on social media and who we are in reality. In the digital world, we find ourselves in competition with others. When we die, is the digital persona we leave behind authentic to who we really were? 

Our second mainstage offering was, Hopscotch, directed by Rebecca Reid. Losing herself to the afterlife, Eva and her childhood friend, Chloe, revisit their shared past and fight to keep memories of one another alive. Through honesty, pain, love, and hopscotch, they learn what it means to truly remember.   

Originally an extracurricular event completely produced by students, the Theatre and Performance programme took over producing the bi-annual event in 2016 bringing the event to the mainstage and increasing both the mentorship opportunities for students and the production values.  With three new plays exploring the potent themes of reflection, connection, and loss, created and staged by some of the region’s most exciting emerging artists, the 2018 UpStart Festival was an innovative and unforgettable evening of theatre