Our Season

The 2021 Yellow Springs Annual Ten Minute Play Festival June 25th & 26th 7pm to 830pm (RAIN OR SHINE!!!!)Yellow Springs High School,
420 E Enon Rd, (south lawn)
SAFETY: We are still in the midst of a pandemic. We request that all who attend wear a mask and only take it off if you are vaccinated and seated. Please bring a blanket or chair to sit on. Please be considerate of your
neighbors and allow for social distancing. The area directly in front of the stage is reserved for blankets only. If you bring a chair please sit further back so others can see. There will be no intermission.
Our goal for organizing the 10 Minute Play Festival is to give writers a
venue to share their ideas. This year we asked for submissions on the
topics of social injustice and experiences of those marginalized by the
status quo. We have 4 writers from Yellow Springs, 2 from Dayton , & 1
from Chicago. We hope these works will lead to further discussion and thought. The first 10-minute-play festival in Yellow Springs was organized in 2009. In 2015 the Yellow Springs Theater Company stepped up to continue this event and has been hosting it yearly since. Please share our Facebook page: “The Yellow Springs Theater Company”, email:  ystheatercompany@gmail.com and website http://ystheater.org/ with any writers, actors or others who are interested. We would love to hear more voices and get more people involved. Thank you and stay safe!
Ellen Ballerene, Ten Minute Play Coordinator and YSTC Chair.
DONATIONS: Please donate at the concession table upon entering so that we can continue to bring you live theater. With a $10 donation you can GUESS HOW MANY CICADA EXOSKELETONS ARE IN THE JAR FOR the
chance to win 2 FREE TICKETS to a show of your choice in our next 2 upcoming seasons!!!
DONATIONS CAN ALSO BE MAILED TO: Yellow Springs Theater Company
PO BOX 174
Yellow Springs, OH 45387
PROGRAM
“George Floyd’s Lament” from What’s Done in the Dark: The New Jim Playbook by Bomani Moyenda of Yellow Springs. (You may access the full play at: https://youtu.be/pcw5dJSs_Ms ) Director: John Fleming
George Floyd: Bomani Moyenda
“She’s Not Gay” by Ron Mustard of Dayton Director: Amy Magnus
Mary: Lauren Shows
Jason: Elias Kelley
Chris: Zan Holtgrave
“Changing Room” by Matt Raska of Yellow Springs
Director: Matt Raska
Betty: Ellen Ballerene
Ginny: Jeanna GunderKline
Vivian: Jessica Thomas
Lizzie: Shekinah Williams
“Cowboy Chuck” by Robb Willoughby of Yellow Springs Director: Robb Willoughby
Morris: Reilly Dixon
Stanley: Jeremy Holtgrave
Cowboy Chuck: Troy Lindsey
“Standing Rock” by Jennie Hawley of Dayton Director: Jenny Westfall
Cultural Consultant: Sommer McGuire
Chaytan: Paul Dunn
Kimimela: Sommer McGuire
Evelyn: Cynthia Karns
“Toast” by Bren Coombs of Chicago
Director: Ellen Ballerene
Alex: Shekinah Williams
Whitley: Jeanna GunderKline
“Orpheus Alone” by Tim Morand of Yellow Springs
Director: Tim Morand
Orpheus: Stefanie Wallace
Ino: Jan Weinkam
Pompey: Tim Morand

MEET THE WRITERS

Bomani Moyenda (“George Floyd’s Lament) has lived the majority of his life in Yellow Springs, Ohio and is a graduate of Yellow Springs Schools as are his four children. He holds a B.S degree in Business Administration from Kettering University in Flint. Michigan. His volunteer activities include African American Cross-Cultural Works, The Human Relations Commission, The 365 Project, Inc. and the Martin Luther King Day Planning Committee, Black Lives Matter Miami Valley.

He was the winner of the 1997 Paul Laurence Dunbar Poetry Prize at Sinclair Community College and has participated in many local and area poetry readings and also had poetry published in African Voices Magazine (New York). In 2015 he created a writers’ group, Writers Eclectic (WE) which remains active. Moyenda is a writer and poet who has led several local poetry jams”. He contributors a monthly column to the Yellow Springs News entitled “Sankofa Talk” and to a blog entitled Writing While Black.

In 2014, he became active in the Justice for John Crawford movement, an effort to bring justice to the family of John Crawford III, a 22-year-old African American man who was murdered by police in the Beavercreek Ohio Walmart. Most recently he has been involved with Yellow Springs Speaking Up for Justice, a youth-led group which has held weekly anti-racism rallies since the murder of George Floyd by a Minneapolis police officer. He also leads the Greene County Coalition for Compassionate Justice, the offspring of a group called Greene County Citizens Against Giant Jail Tax, which came to together to organize the defeat of proposed tax levy to build a 500 bed, $70 million jail in Xenia, OH.

In April of 2021, his first play What’s Done in the Dark: The New Jim Playbook, was performed at Central State University. (You may access the full play at: https://youtu.be/pcw5dJSs_Ms )

Ron Mustard is a retired high school teacher with 32 years of service in the Dayton Public Schools. He has been in a loving relationship with his husband, Tony, for 43 years. After retiring, Ron became a gay author who writes about the issues that gay teens face in our society. “She’s Not Gay” is his first attempt at writing a 10-minute play. He wishes to thank the Yellow Springs Theater Company for allowing him the opportunity to present a candid look at a lesbian daughter coming out to her parents.
Matt Raska (“Changing Room”) Matt Raska lives in Yellow Springs.
He eats and sleeps and other things. His brains is always full of thinks. Some of which get put to in
Robb Willoughby (“Cowboy Chuck”) is a playwright and resident of Yellow Springs. His plays, both full length and one act, have had Professional Readings and productions all across the country. Most recently, his comedy Look Into My Eyes was streamed as an Equity Reading by the Human Race Theatre Company. When not writing, Robb enjoys pouring beer for folks at YSB. He can also be seen, every two weeks doing laundry at the Laundromat, “Well, somebody has to do it.” Robb’s other plays produced by YSTC include, W3 (Bro, Mr. Pringle’s 1:00, Dirty Laundry) and Sunday School Hangover. He would like to thank YSTC and Ellen B. for their continued support.
Jennie Hawley has been involved in multiple aspects of theater for over 30 years. From acting to costuming, it has brought her immense joy and unforgettable memories. She also hails from a family of writers. Her mother, Rosalie Yoakam, was a History column writer for the Dayton Daily News and her Grandmother, Rosa Dotson, published a book about grappling with cancer. Jennie created numerous short stories in her teens and has continued writing in various forms to this day. These two
interests converged during the pandemic, when she attended classes provided by Ohio Playwrights Circle. Her piece “Standing Rock” was created during one of the class assignments.
Author’s Notes: “Standing Rock” was written in remembrance of the events that took place in 2016, in South Dakota, during the Dakota Access Pipeline protests. The horrendous use of police force and violence against unarmed protesters and Native American tribes made an indelible impression. Jennie’s hope was to elevate these events in the conscious- ness of the general population. As a society, we must honor and learn about whose lands we are on and remember that “Water is Life”.
Bren Coombs is a writer, producer, designer, social media specialist, and journalist currently living in Chicago. Bren’s work has previously been seen in LA, NYC, Austin, and Dallas. Bren’s play “Toast” has won the Stage Writers Festival for “Best Ten-Minute Play” and has been featured in several other showcases. Bren appeared on stage in Mortified, perform- ing a self-written piece featuring diary entries and notes from childhood that was so well received that Bren was also featured on the Mortified podcast. Bren wrote and directed the short film Ex-Lovers with Axes on Fire and co- wrote TV series Off Limits. Bren’s work has appeared in numerous outlets including CNN, The LA Times, GLAM, HLN, CNN, Bloomberg, and more. Bren is currently co-producing a documentary film about Queer representation in film. Bren strives to uplift other creatives, to put forth authentic storytelling, and to get shit done.
Author’s Notes: Mental health issues are something that many people experience, yet they are often a taboo subject, especially when it comes to self-harm and suicide. The more we talk about our own issues, the more we can find common ground with others who are experiencing the same things and the more support we can both offer to and receive from others. By showing one another our cracks, we can let more light in.

Tim Morand: In the June 11, 2020 edition of the Yellow Springs News a poem by Tim Morand was published in the First Lines column. In an accompanying interview he was described as a “stargazer, an optometrist and a poet, vocations of vision… writing poems for many years, haiku, sonnets and free verse. And sometimes poems write him.” In ensuing months he thought and wrote about an existentialist call for myth that can address social injustice and the experiences of those who are marginalized. His play “Orpheus Alone” appears for the first time as part of the Ten Minute Play Festival.

Author’s Notes: Orpheus was a muse of poetry and song in Greek mythology whose lyric verse was said to enchant even stones. He lost his bride to the bite of a snake, then lured the master of the underworld to give her life again, yet with one condition, Orpheus must not look back. When he fails, he enters the world alone. This play is my version of Orpheus and the gift of lament in living with less. I think the play as a whole is about shaping ‘less’, giving an arc that makes the actual experience of feeling less than full bearable. Perhaps the graduate of Antioch College and 1990 US poet laureate, Mark Strand, said it well in the closing lines of his magnificent poem by the same name as my play when he wrote:

(Orpheus came)
So the future, with no voice of its own, nor hope
Of ever becoming more than it will be, might mourn.

We would like to thank all the writers for contributing. We also want to thank Yellow Springs Schools, Village of Yellow Springs, Arts and Culture Commission, Yellow Springs News, Arts Council, Chamber, and the John Bryan Community Center for supporting us. Thank you to all the actors and directors who volunteered their time and expertise to bring these works to light.

SUMMER 2016

Much Ado About Nothing

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July 15-16, 22-23
The back lawn of Kelly Hall
Antioch College (facing Corry St. in YS)
8 p.m. rain or shine
Lawn Seating.

It is summer 1864 and in the tiny town of Messina, Ohio, the local regiment has returned on leave, ready to fall in love.   As the town celebrates the upcoming marriage of war hero, Captain Claudio and Hero, the lovely daughter of the town’s leading family,  a fierce and funny battle of wits ignite between Benedick and Beatrice, both who swear they will never fall in love.

Sparks fly when friends and family unite to bring the two together. Elsewhere,  in the shadows, Don John forms a more sinister plot to stop the marriage.  With mass confusion, confessions of love, a bumbling sheriff and a wise reverend, Shakespeare provides much ado indeed before love finally conquers all.

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Something Wicked This Way Comes

Script adapted by Ray Bradbury
October 2016

One strange and dark year long ago, Halloween came on Oct. 24, three hours after midnight, to be precise. The exact same time that Cooger and Dark’s Pandemonium Shadow show rolled into Green Town, Ill. As the town clock chimes 3:00, James Nightshade and William Halloway leave their beds to watch the train pull in, but there is no one manning the locomotive and no one in the cars behind. Yet the siren song of a calliope beckons all with impossible dreams and youth regained. First lured by its promises, the two boys will soon discover the diabolical truth about the carnival. Behind the Egyptian mirror mazes and the spooky cast of characters, including the Illustrated Man and deadly Mr. Dark, the cost of wishes can be the stuff of nightmares. Only Jim, Will and Will’s father can save the town from the sinister carnival that threatens to destroy it and them. Adapting his own literary classic for the stage, Ray Bradbury weaves a classic tale of good and evil, perfectly capturing the wonder of youth and Octobers of skies orange and ash gray at twilight.

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Holidays in the Springs Surprise

:  Special Surprise!

December 2016

Yellow Springs, OH