Professor to read at ESU

Tess Wilson / Washburn Review

Each year, Emporia State University offers a class regarding playwriting and screenwriting, in which students have the chance to meet a playwright or a screenwriter at a scheduled reading and talk.

“We try to bring in a playwright or a screenwriter to help enlarge our students’ view of the art and trade of writing for stage and screen,” said Kevin Rabas, Associate Professor and Co-Director of ESU’s Creative Writing program.

This year, ESU will be hosting Penny Weiner, published playwright and Washburn professor.

“Weiner will read from her plays as well as talk about issues and elements in her craft,” said Rabas. “She’ll talk about what it takes to write plays, from their initial genesis through workshop and script-in-hand readings to their eventual full production.”

Weiner recently directed a script-in-hand reading of a collaborative adaptation of the work of another Kansas native, Gary Jackson. The reading of “Missing You, Metropolis” was an innovative and extraordinarily unique one, and there’s a possibility Weiner might cite her recent experience at ESU next Friday.

“I’ll be in classrooms, doing workshops, discussing structure, character and theatricality,” said Weiner.

In her own classes at Washburn, Weiner is known for approaching the art of playwriting with passion and enthusiasm.

This event will not only be a platform for education and exploration, it will also serve as a showcase for some new work.

“I’m requesting to use the work of two former students and might work with a piece I’m developing,” said Weiner.

Because the event is free and open to the public, Rabas hopes the entire community – academic and otherwise – will be able to take advantage of such a great opportunity.

“We expect that students, faculty, staff and community members will come and enjoy Weiner’s presentation,” said Rabas. “Attendees will come away from her reading and talk inspired and filled with essential playwriting knowledge. That is my intuition, expectation and hope.”

For a night of education and entertainment, head to ESU’s campus for the reading that will take place from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m., Oct. 12 in Plumb Hall.