One Act Play Festival (OAPF) is back once again with amazing plays for the audience of UNM! The second day of the event featured four plays namely ‘Fiery. Unassailable. Crippling. Kerfuffle. (FUCK)’, ‘Waiting for Yama’, ‘Red Files’ and ‘Tests of Young men’. The plays captured the audience’s attention and left them yearning for more.

Fiery. Unassailable. Crippling. Kerfuffle. (FUCK)

The play starts out with a husband and wife fighting about the husband’s mother embarrassing them at her birthday party. The wife is frustrated at her husband for never defending her in front of his mother and accuses him of never pointing out the good in her in front of people. The couple go back and forth picking at each other’s faults. The couple then start reminiscing their past and how much they used to love each other. They reminisce their old days together and wonder where their relationship went wrong. At the end, they decide to say “FUCK IT” and go to
relationship advisor for help on their relationship.

The play teaches us that caring about other people’s opinions about our relationship may be a reason why our relationships go down the wrong path. The couple’s fight started because of their argument regarding their mother’s opinion and ended with them stating what their friends think of them, as well. It teaches us it’s better to do what we think is best for us despite what others might say. To say “FUCK IT” and just do it.

Waiting for Yama

A preacher appears on stage and asks the audience to sing praise for ‘Goddess Anya’ who has granted humans mortality. Goddess Anya, then, appears on stage and starts bickering with an Indian God named Chitragupta regarding what’s going to happen to her now that she’s dead. Anya refuses, for some reason, to talk about her death or to discuss her life even though Chitragupta explains that that is the only way for her to meet the ‘Lord of Justice’ Yama who will decide her faith. The God then opens up the topic of why Anya ended up taking her own life away and insists that the girl Anya did it for will go to Hell. Anya refuses to go to Heaven without
the girl she loves and asks Chitragupta to just send her to hell so she can be with her. Since it is not in Chitragupta’s hand, they continue to bicker back and forth for eternity thus, granting humans their mortality.

The play kept the audience at the edge of their seats wondering why Anya refuses to speak about her death and the reason behind it. The play was also humourous and was enjoyable for the audience to watch despite the hint of seriousness associated with death and the ones we love. The preacher states that Anya and Chitragupta are still talking and it makes the audience curious as to whether they would find an end to their talk and how that would affect humanity.

Test of Young Men

Two friends, Jordan and France, meet up after a long time to chat and catch up with old times. The friends talk about their lives and how they’re doing till Jordan notices a bruise on his friends arm. It turns out France’s boyfriend, Sam, had hit him and that caused Jordan to be outraged.
He vows to take revenge for his friend and to hurt Sam. France insists that it’s no big deal and that he can handle the issue on his own. Jordan tells him that he has friends who can help him but France continues to insist on wanting no one involved. A mugger then appears and after getting into a fight with them, Jordan ends up killing them. The friends then have a heartfelt talk about their friendship and decide to go and “cause a scene” together.

It is important to value the friends we have in our lives and to understand that asking for help, especially from the ones closest to us, is not a sign of weakness. ‘Test of Young Men’ proved that to the audience.

Red Files

A private detective and a police officer, who are dating, meet at a bar and share a file of classified information. They discuss a recent case about a serial killer and the girlfriend then shares that she’ll have to be away for a job for the next three months. She refuses to reveal where she’s going, stating it’s classified and then asks her boyfriend to hide when a colleague enters the bar. The boyfriend then starts questioning their relationship and whether she loved him at all. The boyfriend also shares that he’s got enough evidence against the force that proves they are working for corruption. She pleads with him not to share that information as it would lose her her job. Tired of arguing with her and heartbroken, he gives her the file containing the evidence and leaves.

This last story tells of heartbreak and people not valuing the relationships they have. The police officer valued her job more than their relationship of seven years. It teaches us not to lead people on and keep them in relationships just because they benefit us rather than because we love them.

With that, OAPF 2020 ended on a bittersweet note. We hope to see more impressive plays the following year!

Written by Hinda Mohamed Hassan and Salma Tamer