April 10, 2012

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The Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) Department of Humanities and Arts and its theatre group, Masque, are celebrating the 30th anniversary of New Voices, the nation's longest-running collegiate new and original play festival.

Since 1982, the group has featured original, unpublished scripts by WPI students, faculty members, staff, alumni, and friends. Each year New Voices, WPI’s biggest annual theatre presentation, attracts between 50 and 100 submissions from the WPI community. The festival brings as many as 20 productions to the stage each spring, involving more than 200 students as cast, crew, and staff.

This year, eight plays, all written, directed, and performed by members of the WPI community, were chosen for the festival:

• Poems: The Early Life of Pope John Paul II, by Elena Ainley of Hudson, N.H.

• Golden, by Sebastian Bellisario of Wellesley, Mass.

• Dora's Disclosure, by Anika Blodgett of Auburn, Mass.

• Land of the Living ... Living? by Tofer Carlson of Leicester, Mass.

• Jake, by Laura Fischer and Erin Saari of Brookline, N.H.

• The Golden Apple, by Holly Fletcher of Dartmouth, Mass.

• Barbecue Chicken Pizza, by Louisa King of Nottingham, N.H.

• Grave Intentions, by Alex Rock of Medfield, Mass.


New Voices was established by Susan Vick, professor of drama and theatre, who came to WPI in 1981 to direct the university's theatre program. While theatre has long been a presence in student life at WPI, it wasn’t until Vick's arrival at WPI that it fully blossomed. An accomplished playwright, actress, and director, Vick has engaged students through her courses in drama and stagecraft, leading many deeper into the world of the dramatic arts as an advisor to student projects, working closely with students who choose to major or double major in theatre (the most popular concentration area in Humanities and Arts), and providing frequent opportunities for students to put theatrical theory into practice and showcase their talents and work.


April 12-14, 2012, at 7 p.m. 


Little Theatre, Worcester Polytechnic Institute, 100 Institute Road, Worcester, Mass.