Hey y’all! Who is getting excited for the Seabury Quinn Playfest this April!! Next up in the interview series is one of everyone’s favorite OU Third Year Playwrights, Morgan Patton! Morgan has become well known in the playwriting program for her complex characters, her plays with enormous heart and of course her way smart vibe! Read my full interview with her below and learn more about her and her awesome new play at Seabury Quinn, Fools’ Gold.
As a writer you are drawn a lot to stories about families, what do you find intriguing about family plays?
Well even though I don’t have a particularly dysfunctional family myself, I’m really drawn to the potential for dysfunction within a family. Living in close quarters brings out the worst in all of us, so your relationship to the people you live with or grew up with says a lot about you. I also really like to play with the notion that family can be defined as the people you choose to love, not the people you’re obligated to love from birth. My current play actually isn’t about family unless you consider best friends to be family, which these characters do.
Your thesis play, “Fools’ Gold” is an adaptation of “Merchant of Venice.” What drew you to that story?
Even though it’s one of the most performed of Shakespeare’s plays throughout history, it’s also one of the most problematic, and not just because it’s anti-Semitic. Maybe I was drawn to the dysfunction in this play like I am to the dysfunction in a family. But when I pulled it apart I saw a strong, ambitious woman, some great interpersonal relationships, and the potential to shine a light on something wrong in society. By removing the context of religion, I was able to explore some issues with the socioeconomic divide.
.If your play was an article of clothing, what would it be and why? Be as specific as you want 😉
My play would be a skort, the kind from the ‘90s where it looks like a skirt in the front and shorts in the back, because Fools’ Gold is a lot about people or situations not being how they initially seem. And depending how you view it, it might look nice from one angle, but from the other perspective it’s a little uncomfortable.
What is a fun fact most people don’t know about you?
I would like to write a musical some day. Most people don’t know this about me because I decided it yesterday.
You’ve read about and now loveeeee Morgan! Now Come check out the reading of her thesis play “Fools Gold” at the 21st Annual Seabury Quinn PlayFest at 8pm THURSDAY, APRIL 23rd in Baker Theater!
Here is the blurb for it:
Portia is a lawyer with a clear-cut set of morals, but when she realizes that the man she’s falling for is in trouble with the law for doing something he felt was right, it suddenly seems like a moral grey area. She finds herself wondering, perhaps for the first time, whether the ends really do justify the means, or if she’s just compromising her identity because of the feelings she has for him. And if so, is that such a bad thing?
More about Morgan
Morgan Patton was born and raised in Newport, Kentucky, just across the river from Cincinnati. In 2011, she graduated Magna Cum Laude from Northern Kentucky University as an Honors Scholar with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Playwriting and a Bachelor of Arts in English. Her plays work with themes of love, loss, and family in order to explore the elusive concept of identity and what it means to belong. Recently her ten-minute play YARD SALE, about a mug and a teapot, was a regional finalist for the Kennedy Center American College Theatre festival, and was one of six ten-minute plays staged and developed there. For more information, visit her website at www.playsbymorgan.com.