FSU Grad’s ‘Shadows in the Cave’ Coming to Life
By Mina Corpuz
FITCHBURG -- A play Fitchburg State University alumnae Samantha deManbey began writing as a freshman will be brought to life during a staged reading on campus at the end of the month.
It’s the latest in a series presented by The Forge Theater Lab that features work by the university’s graduates.
“It’s hard to get your work out professionally,” deManbey said. “Our company has found a place for people to get started.”
A reading of the play will take place on Saturday, March 23, at 7:30 p.m. at Fitchburg State’s Kent Recital Hall. Admission is free with a suggested donation of $3 to $10.
“Shadows in the Cave” is about a student who leads a rebellion against his high school’s standardized testing. DeManbey returned to the project and completed it years later after she gained more writing and production experience.
A 2012 film/video and theater graduate, deManbey said the play addresses issues like education, philosophy, and mental health. It also examines into the role schools should play in teaching students to be good workers or free thinkers.
On March 23, actors will read from a script and act out scenes without a set to give the audience a sense of what the play would look like with full production. Afterward, there will be a talking session with the playwright.
DeManbey has written four full length plays and shorter ones. Her play “Fausted,” about climate change, was performed at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival in Scotland in 2015.
Most of her plays have a political message and focus on issues she is passionate about, deManbey said.
She became interested in playwriting through her love for theater. deManbey has acted and worked on production for plays.
At FSU, deManbey took screenwriting and playwriting classes and thought about how she would write a play or have characters interact.
“I like working with a big group of people to put something together,” she said. “Live theater has something that is very energizing.”
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