The ‘Write’ Stuff: Third Onion to punch ‘Porno Factory’ clock

Photo of fingers typingThe Third Onion, a student-initiated and produced performance program of Northern Illinois University’s School of Theatre and Dance, will premiere an original play, “The Porno Factory.”

Performances are scheduled at 7 p.m. Thursday, March 26, and Saturday, March 28, in Holmes Student Center Diversions Lounge Theatre.

The play stars its author, NIU writing instructor Loren Hecht. Also appearing will be NIU BFA in acting candidate T.C. Fair. The director and dramaturg is Christine Fuchs, an MFA in acting candidate.

“The Porno Factory” follows Harriet the dilettante, a lost soul whose financially generous father considers her a failure because she’s not married and has no job prospects. What she is and who she is, she has no idea. She knows only that she does not want to live a conventional, meaning-suffocating life.

As a result of parental pressure to return home, combined with an inner compass that drives her toward The Weird, she finds work in New York City with a company that produces pornographic novels.

Harriet, who has almost no writing experience, is hired as a writer with an expected quota of a book and a quarter a week. As a book is 180 pages, she is required to write 225 pages per week, 45 pages per day, 40 lines to a page, 10 words to a line, 200 lines per hour.

Photo of a trash basket and crumpled-up paper“The Porno Factory” is the story of Harriet’s experience in this strange world of assembly line pornography, a world peopled with colorful characters, Hecht said. “Yes, the story contains explicit language – but the play is edgy and satirical, rather than erotic,” she said.

As with most new plays, Hecht considers hers a work in progress, having benefited from much collaborative effort while preparing to mount the play’s premiere performance. She particularly cites director Fuchs. “With her empathic understanding, her intuitive questioning made the rewriting both possible and productive,” she said.

All general admission tickets to “The Porno Factory” are $3 and available only at the door. No reservations are needed.

For more information, contact Robert Schneider at (815) 753-8263 or rschneider@niu.edu or Hecht at (815) 815-766-0016 or lbhecht@lorenhecht.com.

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