Battle of the Bards creates an open mic space for theater community
When writer Sawyer Green of Kingston heard the prompt for Battle of the Bards 2, he told the other three writers he was going to pen the shortest, five act epic play he could.
That idea…didn’t last very long.
“I ended up writing a spy thriller,” he said.
To participate in Battle of the Bards, four local writers had 48 hours to write a short play based on a prompt they received Friday night. On Sunday night, they handed off their scripts to volunteer actors who performed their plays on the spot at Crotti’s on Ash in Scranton.
Lorrie Lougheny of Dickson City attended the first Battle of the Bards this summer as an actor. This time, she penned a romantic comedy that she got to see performed.
“When I went I had a blast,” she said. “There was great energy in the event and I thought we need to do more of this kind of stuff.”
Ryan Jay, another one of the writers, created the Battle of the Bards event. This was the second battle he has hosted at Crotti’s on Ash.
He’s spent a lot of time at various open mic events throughout Scranton, and says he wanted to come up with something like that for the theater community.
“The pull of this is that you can just show up, you don’t have to commit hours and hours of time to rehearsals,” he said. “You don’t have to commit hours and hours of time to even practicing or memorizing lines.”
Jay says the writers are the only ones who need to do any preparation, but at the end of it, they each get to see their play performed and understand what works for the audience.
Jay lives in Scranton and says he has felt at home there because of the creative community. He hopes Battle of the Bards brings more people into the theater scene.
“This is a way to kind of dip your toes into the local scene,” he said. “I’m hoping that it kind of grows it that way.”
By the end of the night at Crotti’s on Ash, 16 actors performed in 4 plays, and the date for Battle of the Bards 3 was set for October 22.