Professor Gets Recognized for His Literary Work

By Vicky Schultz

Kristian O’Hare, Adjunct English Professor at Menlo College, was recently featured in the New York Times after his play “Like Poetry” received positive reviews following a production at New York City’s Fringe Festival. The project, which Dr. O’Hare began in graduate school at Western Michigan University, focuses on the metamorphosis of the protagonist Stagger as he learns to deal with feelings of depression and loneliness.

The play grew from a single-act piece to an entire production over the years and was inspired by The Glass Menagerie by Tennessee Williams. Also an influence were O’Hare’s childhood memories of growing up in the 90s in the wake of the AIDS epidemic and living in fear of Lyme disease in the Midwest.

Themes of identity struggle, human misunderstanding, and sexuality are balanced with humor and wit, something which O’Hare emphasizes. Known mainly for his comedic pieces, O’Hare enjoys making the audience feel comfortable when faced with dramatic themes.

“They responded to what I think is funny, which is always reassuring. It’s great to make the audience laugh – it makes me feel like I’ve done my job. And to finally see it on stage performed by professional actors is what you live for as a writer-the final product!”