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Tuesday, September 15, 2009

STO Fest Begins this Week

In conjunction with Market Fest 2009, the Independent Theatre Collective opens StoFest: A New One-Act Play Festival this weekend. The festival runs Thursday, September 17 through Saturday, September 19 at 8pm and Sunday, September 20 at 3pm and features original plays from WV playwrights. The festival's namesake, Tom Stobart, will also be represented each evening with a staging from his repertoire. Tickets will be available at the door for $10 or festival passes can be purchased online ( for $25.

Wheeling-native writers include Ned Gallaway ("Painting Face"), Butch Maxwell ("Fine"), Jeremy F Richter ("L3" & "Evolving Elliot") and Ron Scott, Jr. ("Opposite But Equal"). Other writers' resumes read like a who's who of theatre artists from Tennessee Williams Award-winner, Jeffrey Scott Elwell to WV Writers podcast creator, Eric Fritzius.

"It is a thrill to be presenting four solid days of all-original, all-WV theatre," says ITC Managing Director, Jeremy Richter. "We have fifteen plays written by ten different writers featuring a cast of twenty. To have this large of a collaborative team in our very first year of StoFest is just incredible."

One play, however, will break the "all-WV" mold. Saturday evening's "Postcards From a Dead Dog" by Pittsburgh playwright, F.J. Hartland will receive a special staged reading. Hartland's script has been highly touted, even being named the Best Play at Pittsburgh's New Works Festival. The reading will feature Arlene Merryman and Richter as a mother/son duo who find it easier to communicate through postcards "sent" from the dead family dog, Rusty.

Performances will be held at Historic Second Presbyterian, 2001 Market Street in Wheeling and doors will open an hour prior to curtain. For further information including online ticket sales and each night's line-up please visit