Senior’s play produced in festival


PLAYING BY THE RULES: Esther Grover ’19 created an illustration for a poster for “Rule of Threes,” Uriah Celaya ’18’s play about three sisters who control the strings of mortals’ fates. The play was shown at the Short New Play Festival in New York City. Credit: Esther Grover ’19

Uriah Celaya’s ’18 original play, “Rule of Threes,” was produced in the seventh annual Short New Play Festival held in New York City at the Lucille Lortel Theater this past summer.
Unlike other students’ plays, Celaya’s play was entered in a festival alongside professional playwrights.
Celaya’s play is about a woman, Maria, who starts to question her own fate after she and her two sisters manage the strings of mortals’ fates.
“The play is about struggling for what your destiny is said to be versus what you want to make your life out to be and how to balance the two,” Celaya said.
Celaya submitted his play the day of the deadline, after finding out about the opportunity the day before from Dara Weinberg, his director for the Playwrights Festival.
His mentors for writing play were English teacher Jocelyn Medawar and performing arts teacher Christopher Moore.
“[Medawar] has really been an inspiration for me in a lot of ways,” Celaya said. “She has helped me a lot throughout the process. And, of course, Mr. Moore helps everyone. He is very frank and that also really helps a lot.”
When Celaya found out that his play was selected for production and that he would be flown out to New York, he said he was shocked because he was one of the six writers chosen out of 300 submissions. But he also knew that this one accomplishment was only the beginning of his career.
“I know I have a lot to come before me, and just one accomplishment I think doesn’t define me yet,” Celaya said. “But, I do think it is something that I have to live up to because I did well one time, so I know that I can do better. So, that is what I’m going with, to just continue.”
Celaya said his own experiences as a student during junior year inspired the play.
“My mom wants me to be a doctor, but I want to be an English major, so it is kind of doing what my mom wants me to do versus what I actually want to do, and I think that struggle comes out in ‘Rule of Threes,’” Celaya said.
In the future, Celaya hopes to continue pursuing writing both in his upcoming two plays in the Playwrights Festival and his career.
“I feel like it was the start for me for how I hope for my career to go in the future,” Celaya said. “That was my first step to go out somewhere and see [my play] be produced. Of course I want to continue playwriting, but I also want to do other forms of writing too.”
Before writing this play, Celaya took creative writing at the Middle School, participated in the Playwrights Festival and wrote a play during his sophomore year.
“I was really shy,” Celaya said. “I think writing was a way for me to talk without actually having to talk, so it eased me out of my shell a little bit.”