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Eighth Annual PLAYS-IN-DEVELOPMENT Performs Tonight And Tomorrow In Jonesville

The Sauk's eighth annual PLAYS IN DEVELOPMENT will be presented July 1 and 2 at the Sauk Theatre in Jonesville.

Eighth Annual PLAYS-IN-DEVELOPMENT Performs Tonight And Tomorrow In Jonesville

In addition to their season of plays and musicals, The Sauk, Hillsdale County's Community Theatre, is dedicated to developing new theatrical works. The Sauk's eighth annual "Plays-in-Development" will be presented July 1 and 2 at the Sauk Theatre in Jonesville.

Started in 2015, "Plays-in-Development" is a unique project to help writers develop their scripts. Actors and directors work one on one with playwrights to learn what works and what does not work about their plays. During rehearsals, the playwrights make changes to their scripts. The project ends with free staged readings for the public. After the readings, the audience gets an opportunity to respond to what they have heard. Therefore, the playwrights end the process with ideas from directors, actors and audience.

"As the program has grown, we are starting to get submission from all over the world," said Sauk Executive Director Trinity Bird, who coordinates the program. "Although we continue to make local playwrights a priority, we have received scripts from almost all 50 states and eight foreign countries. Our play selection committee reviewed all of these submissions and ultimately selected the three scripts we will be working on this year."

The Friday, July 1 line-up includes "LIVING" by G.M. (Bud) Thompson of Grand Rapids, Mich. and "The Challenge" by Meaghan Bryant of North Adams, Mich. The readings begin at 7:30 p.m.

In "LIVING," ​a mother and son struggle to adapt to the new life they unexpectedly find themselves in. Try as they might to make the best of it, painful memories and frustration complicate their efforts to get on with living. This reading is directed by MJ Dulmage. The cast includes Andy Anderson, Ross Bonjernoor, Amy Crow, Christina Dube, Josh Lightner, Lorelei Stemme, Tiffany Thatcher and Jennifer Yokell.

All families face challenges. But the Matthews family is facing their biggest challenge yet. Will they rise to the occasion and succeed? Will they fail? Will they kill each other before they reach the finish line? Mom, Amy, is eager to find out in "The Challenge." This reading is directed by Mari Nuñez. The cast consists of Annabelle Gray, Jeff Gray, Alex Guest, Elizabeth Guest and Juli Morgan.

On Saturday, July 2, at 7:30 p.m., "A Shore of Abundance" by Pearl Moore of Cana, Va. will be read.

​​"A Shore of Abundance" is about a young seventeen-year-old girl named Eleanor who creates a world in which she is the captain of her own pirate ship in order to escape from her life, in which she has no control or power. In the real world, she wants to search for her biological father after finding out that the father who raised Eleanor her whole life isn't her real father. On top of this, she is pressured to start figuring out what she should do for her future. With it all being too much for her mind she escapes into her pirate world where she goes on a journey to find her pirate father who has been taken by a sea witch. It is up to Eleanor to find items of three in order to trade the items for her pirate father's safe return. The cast will include Kendra Bonjernoor, Noah Bryant, Bruce Crews, Tyson Duff, Stella McCourry and Esther Yokell. Sarah Gray will direct.

Admission is free. The staged readings will be held at the Sauk Theatre, 240 E. Chicago St., Jonesville. Doors open at 7 p.m. each night. Visit for more information.

"Plays-in-Development" is sponsored by Gossage Eye Institute and Optical, Drews Place Assisted Living Communities, Country Carpets and Don Toffollo of Edward Jones. The Sauk also received a grant from the Walmart Foundation to encourage producing work by local playwrights. The 2022 season is sponsored by Joyous Journey Photography. The 2022 Media Sponsor is WCSR Radio Hillsdale and The Dale 99.5.

From This Author - Grace Cutler

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