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Writers Exchange Sparks Imaginations

The New Mummer Group, a theatrical group based in New York City, joined forces with local writers this week to hold the first ever Writers Exchange on campus. Six plays were performed throughout the day on June 10, as well as the reading of nine poems.

The New Mummer Group joined Bereans to host the first ever Writers Exchange.

The writers spent the week workshopping their pieces while the actors transformed into their characters. With minimal props, it was up to the actors and actresses, and to the imaginations of the audience, to create the scene on the stage.

The selected plays ranged widely in subject. One play, set in Appalachia, took on the controversial topic of mountaintop removal coal mining. In the play, the characters band together and run the coal company off their land.

Another play told the story of a girl looking for more to life in New York City. The resolution did not come until after the annoying butting-in of the girl’s rich old-woman neighbor, and the death and fake cremation of the girl’s friend’s dog.

These two plays, along with four others, were part of the three sets performed on Tuesday. Each set included two plays and three poems. The sets were three hours apart and began at noon.

Audiences were asked for written feedback on each play. Some of the plays will be chosen and performed in New York City in November based on the feedback they received.

The plays were by writers including Kim Stinson, Sarah Moon, Sandi Keaton–Wilson, Zack Calhoon, Susan Ferrara, Teresa Harrison and Eagle Brosi. The performance featured poems written by Trish Ayers, Sandi Keaton-Wilson, Linda Caldwell, Gail Livesay, Sidney Saylor Farr, Sally Pearson-Congleton and Mary Owens, as well.

The event was sponsored by the Appalachian Center.

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