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THEATER: Festival of new theatre 

Although many of us know Geva Theatre for bringing classics like "Sweeney Todd" and "A Christmas Carol" to Rochester, the theater also hosts an annual Festival of New Theatre to showcase up-and-coming talent. From October 25 to November 4 four new works for stage and six short plays by young writers will be introduced to the public. Writers come from across the country, as well as Rochester's backyard, including a Young Writer's Showcase of 10-minute plays by Rochester teens.

A new spin on an old classic, "The (Curious Case of the) Watson Intelligence" takes Sherlock Holmes' sidekick and gives him a 21st century makeover. In Madeleine George's play, which will run on Thursday, October 25, at 7 p.m., Watson is not only assistant to Holmes, he is an artificial intelligence computer, Jeopardy champion, and IT technician. When he falls in love, the question of love's veracity comes into play, and is complicated by his own technology.

In addition to traditional plays with live actors, a play held on Halloween will include puppetry and projections. On Wednesday, October 31 at 7 p.m. "20,000 Leagues Under The Sea" by Sean Daniels, Jon Ludwig, and Jason Hines will depict Jules Verne's 1870 science-fiction classic with the help of a variety of effects to illustrate Captain Nemo's "watery prison."

Other plays being performed include "Chat" by Tanya Barfield at 7 p.m. on Friday, November 2, and Sunday, November 4, and "Stop the Presses" by David Andreatta on Saturday, November 3, at 7 p.m.

All plays will be held in the Nextstage at Geva Theatre (75 Woodbury Blvd.) and are free to attend. They will be presented informally, with script-in-hand format and followed by a discussion with the playwright (with the exception of the Young Writer's Showcase, taking place on Saturday and Sunday, October 27-27, at 3 p.m.). Reservations required, limit of two tickets per person. Call 232-4382 or visit gevatheatre.org for more information.

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