Senior theatre arts major Stephen Hoffmaster will take audiences on a journey about decisions this weekend, through his original one-act play “NOne.”
Pronounced “No One,” Hoffmaster wrote and is directing the play as part of his senior capstone project. It will be performed Feb. 21-22 at 7:30 p.m. in the Showboat Theatre of Frohring Performing Arts Building.
The play explores the choice between following a dream and giving up that dream because of the way it will affect others. In the play, a character gives up on love to follow his dream of becoming a rockstar, but regrets the decision.
“Do you choose what you want to do and follow your dream?” Hoffmaster asks. “Or do you give up on your dream and think about everyone else but you, and how it might affect people? That’s why I named it ‘NOne’ – because ‘no one’ but you can make that decision.”
Hoffmaster saw the opportunity to both write and direct his senior capstone as a way to better understand his chosen field of study.
“I’ve always wanted to be the type of person that learns every aspect of something I’m passionate about,” Hoffmaster said. “I think it helps you get a bigger understanding of how everything works. If you want to be really good at something, you need to see it from every angle.”
Although he’s dabbled in both writing and directing before, this project has a much larger scope; it’s a yearlong process that has proved to be time-consuming, but rewarding.
“It is different because a lot of it relies on me,” Hoffmaster said. “When I’m acting, if I don’t get something, I can ask the director, and he can help me. When doing lights, I can ask the lighting designer or the tech director. With props, I would ask the set designer or tech director. But the professors really wanted me to see how it was like to be doing it for real.”
Hoffmaster said he owes a lot of gratitude to his capstone advisers, Rick Hyde, professor of theatre arts, and Carl Skorepa, technical designer and director.
“During the fall semester, I had meetings with Rick every week to talk about the script and get it to a form that would be direct-able, as well as understandable,” Hoffmaster said. “He would ask me about every detail to make sure that it all made sense and didn’t have parts come from no where.
“Carl has also helped out a lot. He is the tech director and sound designer and has been at every production meeting, making sure I stay on top of things and set up meetings with each of my designers – as well as getting the stage and music ready.”
The show is free and open to the public. The Showboat Theatre has limited seating, so Hoffmaster suggests audience members arrive between 6:30-7 to ensure a seat. There will be a talk-back session following the show.
More photos from “NOne”: