Sophomore Nigel Bailey has a Passion for Playwriting


Credit to Teegan Gonzalez

Nigel Bailey an aspiring playwright poses for photos while holding a book full of monologues on Sept. 28.

By Aadhi Sathiskumar

Stage plays are often seen as a dated form of entertainment. With movies and shows being so popular, not many people watch plays. However, the art of play writing continues to exist and passionate writers still use the medium of plays to show their stories off. 

“Ever since I went to New York in 7th grade, I’ve been interested in plays,” sophomore Nigel Bailey said. “Before then, I hadn’t actually seen a stage play before. Me and my mom saw a few Broadway shows, and it was really cool.”

Although never shown on stage, Bailey made sure to get word out on his play anyway he could. In fact, one of the few times he talked about it with anyone was with his English teacher, Diane Fingers, asking for extra credit. Ever the showman, he admits he did it in part for attention.

“He told me of his play within the first week or so of school,” Fingers said. “I think it’s really cool. I love it when kids find something they really enjoy.” 

Bailey is into all aspects of theater. Not only does he write plays, but he also acts in them and generally is excited about doing anything in the spotlight. His passion is impressive and people have taken notice. 

“[Nigel] is a very outgoing and eager individual,” Director of theater arts at North Kim Sulzner said. “His passion for plays is wonderful. The fact that he wants to write, even more so. Some people just want to perform in them, but he’d love to do anything.”

Bailey’s plays are titled Chestnuts Roasted, a holiday comedy, and Murder at Misery Manor, a murder mystery with comedic elements. Bailey wrote Chestnuts Roasted last year and is working to get Murder at Misery Manor finished. While Chestnuts Roasted was a short, 30 minute play, Bailey says he hopes to make Murder on Misery Manor a full-length, hour and half long play.

“I’ll usually think of jokes, ideas and stories on the spot,” Bailey said. “I never originally meant to make a murder mystery, but I decided to make it more simple just to make the play better.”

Though Bailey’s plays have never been featured in a production, he still hopes that they eventually do. One of the main reasons he writes his plays the way he does is to give schools and other thespians simple yet entertaining plays that don’t require much of a budget. 

“You can’t do a big Broadway production on a school set,” Bailey said. “I write them so they can be performed in a school setting, but I also wanted to make sure they are well written. I really just wanted to get those out, but also make them accessible to a general audience.” 

Though Bailey’s opinion that the school should run smaller plays suitable for a smaller budget does have merit, not everyone agrees with his outlook. Sulzner argues otherwise. 

“Our organization is student run, so students choose plays,” Sulzner said. “Students continue to choose what they want to do. Last year, we had so many restrictions on what we could do, and that was his only experience with it.”

Nevertheless, Bailey continues to explore his original stories through playwriting. He hopes that one day soon, maybe others  can see what his hard work has all been for.

“I do feel that playwriting could come back as an art, but it’s on its downfall,” Bailey said. “Even plays now, there just really aren’t as many new plays coming out. If people came up with new stuff to come out, like mine. If more people do that, I feel it would come back as an art form.”