Seniors create theatre company

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Student-run, student-led and student-featured. A dream come true for Caleb Leal, senior theater major.

Open Source Theatre Company debuted its first ever 10-minute play showcase, and with the help of 10 individuals the show had a great turnout.

Leal, along with friend and colleague Sean Lewis, senior theater major and public relations coordinator of Open Source Theatre, created a theater company from scratch.

Leal recruited Lewis to be apart of Open Source which ended up leading to the idea of the 10 Minute Play Festival.

The festival was made up of three contributions, a short play written by Leal, Lewis and Madison Haugland, junior theater major. Together, the three short plays focused on a central theme of communication in relationships.

Each play featured a different young couple with different communication issues. The first performed play, written by Leal, highlighted communication issues within a young couple in three different stages of dating.

The second play, written by Lewis, was about a newly married missionary couple with very different desires for their future.

The third and final performance, written by Haugland, featured a couple about to have their first child and the struggles and fears that come with being new parents.

Each play was distinctly relatable to the young audience, the actors and the writers.

At the end of the performances, the cast, writers  and administration of the Open Source play festival all sat in front of the audience and opened up the floor for a discussion about all of the performances.

The dialogue that took place was open to everyone in the room and allowed for the audience to offer either praise or criticism.

Daniel Beimford, sophomore theater major, cast in “Practical Guide to Dating,” the 10-minute play written by Leal, spoke on his experience working with Open Source Theatre.

“A lot of the time, when you see theater, it’s not done by people your age; it’s usually people who have already graduated or are older and they kind of lose perspective on certain things,” Beimford said. “I really hope that it succeeds, not only because we get to see theater that is done by people we know, but also just because they’re my friends.”

Maddison Rickard, senior theater major, also acted in “Practical Guide to Dating” and had a similar response.

“It’s such a great opportunity for people to see theater that hasn’t already been done. It’s all brand new stuff that they’ve been working on. It’s really great to see theater performed by your friends and colleagues. I really hope that it continues to do more theater, more things that get people to talk,” Rickard said.

Leal, senior theater major, is the creative director and founder of the company. After doing theater for several years, Leal said he wanted to create something of his own that would be supported by his peers.

“This has been a dream of mine for the past two years,” Leal said.

Leal said he saw people outside of CBU creating their own theater and after consulting with a professor decided that it was what he wanted to do for and with his peers.

Leal said that he spent a lot of his time garnering people into the Open Source Theatre project by seeking out likeminded individuals.

“We’ve had meeting after meeting. We’ve had draft after draft of each script, auditions and rehearsals and we even had to push back the date at one point, but we are here now. We got it done and it is truly a dream come true.”

Seeing this company flourish and grow was a major achievement for Leal but also for the actors. Rickard said it was inspiring to see her friends and peers succeeding at accomplishing their dream.

“It makes me so proud to see people who had a dream and accomplished it. There’s a lot of talk in theater of ‘I’m going to do this and that’ but Caleb and all of the members of Open Source Theatre did something,” Rickard said.

Open Source Theatre Company is currently in the midst of creating more original works as well as other more familiar productions but also looking to put on another performance this spring.

Dates have not yet been announced but all information on shows can be found on their Facebook at

“We want to create shows that create a conversation with the audience,” Leal said.

About NinaSophia Stowe

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