SATE presents the Seventh Annual Aphra Behn Festival, May 5-7, 2023, at Fontbonne University. Performances are at 8:00 PM on Friday, May 5 and Saturday, May 6. Performance on Sunday, May 7 at 4:00 PM.
When established in 2017, a goal of the Aphra Behn Festival was to give women interested in directing and writing for theatre an opportunity to get more experience, try out ideas, experiment, and hone their craft. SATE now looks to make the Festival a more inclusive space for transgender and non-binary artists, as well.
The Aphra Behn Festival is named for the fascinating poet, translator, and spy, Aphra Behn, who is widely considered to be the first English woman to make her living as a playwright. SATE produced a play about her, Or, by Liz Duffy Adams, in February 2015 and collaborated with Prison Performing Arts to adapt Behn’s play, The Rover, for the artists at the Women’s Eastern Reception, Diagnostic, and Correctional Center in Vandalia to perform. The Rover was also the text shared by the directors in the 2020 Festival. SATE feels very much a part of Aphra’s legacy.
This year’s list of ingredients for plays to be submitted in the 2023 Festival challenged the writers to re-tell, adapt, or respond to one of the plays on Hedgepig Theatre Ensemble’s Expand the Canon list (www.expandthecanon.com) SATE hosted readings of all three “Re-Told” plays on February 19, March 19, and April 30.
2023 Festival Plays
Bold Stroke for a Villain by Summer Baer
Directed by Emma Glose
Inspired by Hannah Cowley’s Bold Stroke for a Husband
Performed by Gabrielle Lynn, Jaelyn Hawkins, Greta Johnson
Welcome to purgatory! Victoria, condemned to an eternity of reflection, attempts to call into the void to someone she wronged but gets Elle Woulds instead.
Lieblingstante, by Aurora Behlke
Directed by Kayla Ailee Bush
Based off The Uncle by Princess Amalie of Saxony
Performed by Maida Dippel, Michael Pierce, and Leslie Wobbe
Julius introduces his girlfriend to his aunt Claudia. Who knows where the conversation may go after one or two (or four) glasses of wine.
reANIMA by Aly Kantor
Directed by Britney N. Daniels
A speculative subversion of Amelia Rosselli’s Anima
Performed by Keating and Taylor Kelly
Cricket totaled her meat vessel at a party—but not to worry! Her best friend has an industry hookup and made her a brand new one with all the bells and whistles she could ever want (and a few she’s slightly reluctant about). Now everything can get back to normal…right?
Stage Manager: Spencer Lawton
Costume Design: Liz Henning
Lighting Design: Michael Sullivan
Graphic Design: Dottie Quick
Photography: Joel Rumpell
Set/Props Design: Rachel Tibbetts, Ellie Schwetye
Sound Design: Emma Glose, Ellie Schwetye
Intimacy Coordinator: Rachel Tibbetts
Lynn Venhaus has had a continuous byline in St. Louis metro region publications since 1978. She is a Rotten Tomatoes-approved film critic, currently reviews films for Webster-Kirkwood Times and KTRS Radio, covers entertainment for PopLifeSTL.com and co-hosts podcast PopLifeSTL.com…Presents, and writes features and news for Belleville News-Democrat and contributes to other publications. She is a member of CCA, AWFJ and St. Louis Film Critics Association. She is a founding member of the St. Louis Theater Circle.