Photo courtesy of Sarah Fox ’19 | The cast of The Bronco Room, a BST original sketch comedy show, on opening night.
By Jackson Moran ’21
Brophy Student Theatre (BST) collaborates with the Write Life club in order to present creative shows and programs on the Brophy artistic stage.
The two clubs work together to make authentic student written, produced, performed and directed theatre.
Membership between the two groups is consistent, with many students participating in both stages of production.
Aidan Dunnigan ’20, a member of both clubs, joined because he had friends already participating in BST, and decided to follow.
Dunnigan also emphasized the student led nature of BST and write life as being an important aspect of their craft.
“All of the scenes come from scratch, we write them all. Then we give them to the [Student] directors, and they block them and tell us where we are going [on stage],” Dunnigan said, “It’s all from us.”
Andrew Ray ’21 joined the BST after hearing stories about it from his brother, Jonathan Ray ’19.
“The second play in the spring, the musical, is written by Write Life, and BST collaborates with Write Life to put that show on,” Ray said.
Mr. Gil Martinez moderates the BST and Write Life club.
He decided to moderate the club after seeing their performances and making friends with Ms. Jessie Mason, the past moderator of both clubs.
“She indicated that she needed help with it [moderating] because it was such a huge time commitment,” Mr. Martinez said.
He said that he most enjoys the structure and the “freedom that the students get to be creative.”
As the years followed, he took on more responsibility within the club and eventually became the overall moderator.
“I have a passion for theatre, but it’s more watching, more being a theatre goer than an actual performer or stage director,” Mr. Martinez said.
It is this passion that drives him to provide the students with the time commitment on his part.
He values BST and Write Life because, “it allows students to find a niche in something like theatre where even the shy ones, even the ones who aren’t the popular athletes or the most visible students on campus can find their niche and find a good groups of friends.”
He also favors the structure of BST and Write life, as they [students] put together something “bigger than themselves” and create a rather meticulous and extensive piece of work all by themselves.
“We have student directors [for BST], a student co-presidents and vice president for Write Life,” Mr. Martinez said.
These student leaders and directors hold auditions, make decisions on casting, staging, tech work, and acting.
Mr. Martinez also added, and both Ray and Dunnigan echoed, that the relationship between the two clubs was beneficial and crucial to being able to produce the musical every year.
“BST is really indebted to Write Life for providing the key element, the storyline, for our musical,” Mr. Martinez said.
Another important aspect of the BST and Write Life is the co-ed nature of the club.
“Having only guys in a show would make it a little stale, having different characters and different perspectives when writing is important,” Dunnigan said of the contribution made by Xavier students.
Having women as part of the show allows for this diversity in ideas and production that makes every show marketable to both Brophy and Xavier audiences.
“There are diverse ideas that come from both ends of the gender spectrum,” said Ray.
He also repeated Dunnigan’s sentiment that the show would lose some of its “flavor” if it had an all male cast.
“I don’t think theatre works well if we do not have the insight and input of both genders,” Mr. Martinez said, “and I think having Xavier students working alongside the Brophy guys teaches them how to interact with each other, but in a way that there is a larger goal in mind.”
This collaboration between the two genders when writing and producing creates positive interactions and good friendships between members and gives them an end goal to this collaboration.
When they aren’t producing the musical for BST, Write Life members produce short stories, poems and other pieces that are shared and critiqued by the other members.
Write Life meets in P119 on Friday afternoons and BST meetings during production season are Monday through Friday from 3:30 to 5:39.
Auditions for the upcoming musical are held in the Piper building in March.