The Players perform on the clock

The Players start season with 24 hour show


Photo by Evelyn Nelson

The 24 hour show was held at 7:30 p.m. on Sept. 21 in the Riverside Theatre of the Haas Fine Arts Center.

Weeks of preparation go into creating the hour-long shows a theatre production creates. For some of the theatre community in Eau Claire, that time is cut down to only 24 hours the day prior.

The 24 hour show was held at 7:30 p.m on Sept. 21 in the Riverside Theatre of the Haas Fine Arts Center. 

According to the Players president, Semisi Faleta, the show consisted of seven directors and more than 40 participating students across campus. The 24 hour project included over six one-act shows put together by the cast, crew and directors in only one day. 

As a newer member of the Players, undecided first-year student KJ Preston-Pepperell said they valued all the new relationships they gained, which they would not have if they had not joined this organization.

“As a theatre community, they were so happy to have me there,” Preston-Pepperell said. “I am super grateful. That is one of the things you can rely on theater people for, is being one of the most welcoming groups of people I have ever encountered.”

In between each one-act, emcees introduced the title of each show alongside bits of the alternate themes, lines and props that almost made the cut for the 24 hour show. 

The one-acts were written by the Players and included a variety of storylines, from twins uncovering their real mother to an exorcism of the ghost of Avril Lavine. Each show also included a recurring prop of a Chex Mix bag and a recurring line of  “You’re a quizzard, Harry.”

Preston-Pepperell said while they had previous experience in stage managing, it was hard to prepare for an experience that lasted for only 24 hours.

“As a director or an actor you have no idea what the shows will be about,” Preston-Pepperell said. “My cast was really patient with me as a first time director and very supportive. We all just figured it out together.”

According to the Players’ program at the event, the theme of this year’s one-acts was truth, where each mini show had to connect through that selected theme.

The Players’ Instagram page said the students involved had to get creative with their own shows through the theme and their dialogue. The one-act titled “Mozzarella” incorporated elements of the theme through the truth of sexuality.

Preston-Pepperell said the way each play took on the theme of truth differently was fascinating to experience. 

“Every story that I saw was completely different from the other,” Preston-Pepperell said. “Truth about family, friends, lovers, all kinds of different storylines. I got to see a lot of different takes on what that meant to other people, which helps me get to know those people better.”

Throughout the intermission, donors and sponsors of the Players put together a giveaway to thank the audience for attending. Prizes won included season tickets for future Players shows and food coupons to Erbert and Gerbert’s.

For details about future UWEC Players events, contact Semisi Faleta at [email protected].

Nelson can be reached at [email protected].