Emporia State student play selected for regional theater festival

A play written by theater students from Emporia State University in Kansas has been selected to be performed at the Kennedy Center’s American College Theater Festival.

Student playwrights Brandon Jensen and Mark Warner received the honor for their play “The Treehouse Effect.” It will be one of six student plays presented at the regional theater festival in Minneapolis.

“It was something that we were kind of hoping for in the back of our minds, but kind of realistically saying ‘We’re good either way,’” Jim Bartruff, Emporia State’s director of theater, said. “I was so proud of our students and so happy for them. It’s like a father whose spouse gives birth to a new child. You are just so proud ... and excited about what’s going to be ahead of you.” 

Jensen and Warner are both recent Emporia State University (ESU) graduates with degrees in fine arts. Warner said the chance to perform the play at a regional festival was possible thanks to support from Bartruff and ESU faculty and staff.

“They put a lot of trust in us, and we absolutely couldn’t have done it without them,” Warner said. “We never thought it would be this early or that the production at ESU would be so successful.”

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Emporia State University

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