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SUNY Potsdam Presents Plays Across the Walls Festival

October 29, 2021

SUNY Potsdam’s Department of Theatre & Dance Presents Short Play Festival Highlighting Playwrights from Across the Globe 

SUNY Potsdam’s Department of Theatre and Dance is proud to present Plays Across the Walls, an upcoming festival of nine short plays written by playwrights from across the globe. 

The free Plays Across the Walls Festival will run from Nov. 19 to 21 in the Black Box Theater in SUNY Potsdam’s Performing Arts Center, followed by an additional free community show at the Potsdam Public Library on Nov. 22. 

The festival works have been divided into two programs. 

Program A will be presented on Thursday, Nov. 18 at 7:30 p.m., on Saturday, Nov. 20 at 2 p.m., and on Sunday, Nov. 21 at 7:30 p.m. Works include: 

  • Monica Cross’s “Player vs. Player” 

  • Erika Guay’s “Fairshow” 

  • Shawn Granger’s “Overcoming Obstacles” 

  • Rivka Eckert’s “Rooted” 

  • Chuck Lipsig’s “Chivalry and Cyberthieves” 

Program B will be presented on Friday, Nov. 19 at 7:30 p.m., on Saturday, Nov. 20 at 7:30 p.m., and on Sunday, Nov. 21 at 2 p.m. Works include: 

  • Travis Devane’s “Modern Day Sin” 

  • Raluca Urea’s “Jealousy and Sangrias” 

  • Danielle Wirsansky’s “When the Scythe Met the Stone” 

  • Trudy Casewell-Ryan’s “The Rabbit Hole” 

Both programs will be presented together at the final community show on Monday, Nov. 22 at 7:30 p.m., in the Potsdam Public Library. 

Plays Across the Walls has been the perfect opportunity for playwrights from all walks of life to come together and put their work on display. In coordination with Potsdam Public Library, Assistant Professor Rivka Eckert began this project in May 2021 by offering a virtual playwriting workshop to playwrights from both the North Country community and beyond. Over the summer, Eckert also taught an in-person playwriting workshop at Riverview Correctional Facility where participants wrote plays.  

“Now more than ever, we are seeing the connective power of the arts, especially theatre. For a group of strangers to gather and trust one another with their stories, speaks to the great vulnerability and trust that theatre requires. Even in a 10-minute play, there is a whole web of human experience the audience glimpses,” Eckert said. “These performances allow SUNY Potsdam students, working as actors, stage managers, playwrights, directors and community engagement strategists to take responsibility for putting up this production. Plays Across the Walls shows the ways that we radically reimagine how communities can uplift, celebrate and heal together through performance.” 

Admission to the festival is free, and the run-time for each show is approximately 50 minutes. Please note that all audience members will be required to show proof of vaccination and will be asked to wear face coverings throughout the show. 

Tickets can be reserved online in advance here or by calling the Community Performance Series Box Office at (315) 267-2277. 

The stage manager for the Plays Across the Wall Festival is SUNY Potsdam student Alex Howard ’24. The plays are directed by Eckert, Aysha Benjamin ’22 and Dakota Newark ’21.  

The student actors include Lexie Beighley, Denaisha Clarke, Destinee Creeley, Kameron Dailey, Gabe Donovan, Megan Fregoe, Shaena Gibson, Emily Gilligan, Grace Hoffman, Andrew Johnson, Flo Joseph, Sophie Leuzzi, Gabby Maresco, Em Miracle, Isaac Obaratin, Amanda Recine, Mia Rodriguez, Hunter Scharoun and Carter Shults. The crew members include Lauri DeLara, Erin Parnapy, Patrick Silk, Brianna Smallwood and Morgan Trego. 

For more information about the Plays Across the Walls Festival, contact Eckert at

SUNY Potsdam’s Department of Theatre and Dance cultivates an innovative, experiential and multidisciplinary education within an inclusive community which prepares students for leadership and service in the arts as global citizens. The nationally accredited program offers majors in dance, theatre and arts management—all housed in the College’s award-winning Performing Arts Center. For more information, visit


About SUNY Potsdam:  

Founded in 1816, The State University of New York at Potsdam is one of America’s first 50 colleges—and the oldest institution within SUNY. Now in its third century, SUNY Potsdam is distinguished by a legacy of pioneering programs and educational excellence. The College currently enrolls approximately 3,000 undergraduate and graduate students. Home to the world-renowned Crane School of Music, SUNY Potsdam is known for its challenging liberal arts and sciences core, distinction in teacher training and culture of creativity. To learn more, visit

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Alexandra Jacobs Wilke (315) 267-2114

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