Baylor drama productions have always taken place in the fall and spring, yet there was nothing to occupy the winter season. This prompted the beginning of the Winter Players, an almost entirely student-run production, performing short and mobile plays. The two plays this year are “The Tortoise vs. Hare Rematch,” which was directed by senior Jonyca Jiao; and “Happily Ever After,” directed by senior Riley Grove.
“The Tortoise vs Hare Rematch” is a modern version of "The Tortoise and The Hare" folk tale. Jonyca Jiao has long been involved in acting with the Baylor Players but stepped behind the scenes to direct this play. “Directing is very different from acting because I get to see how everything should be arranged and how to place everyone on stage. I get to envision each character in my mind and guide my talented actors to how the play is supposed to be," explained Jiao. "I really get to take charge of everything, and it’s a huge responsibility. I love directing a lot, in fact, because it’s a collaboration between my actors and me as a director, which inspires me to be more professional in theater.”
“Happily Ever After” is a retelling of the story of Cinderella from the perspective of the fairy godmother. This was senior Riley Grove’s first time directing. “I’ve always acted, but wanted to take on a new challenge for the smaller Winter Players productions. Directing gives you a new perspective on the art of theatre" said Grove. "You get to mold, create, and define the story you want to tell by helping the actors find their characters and developing the plot beyond the script. It has been a lot of fun to get to be a director before I graduated.”
Both plays are performed at the Carver and Westside centers, where Baylor students tutor kids after school. Performances also took place in the Baylor dining hall on Sunday, Jan. 27. These plays are fantastic to see with your friends or family just to enjoy and see all the hard work the Baylor Players put into these shorts.