Lily Telegdy ’23 in the WZBC Studio. Photos by Caitlin Cunningham.
In the theater world, the actors occupy center stage, literally. But for Lily Telegdy ’23, it’s the less visible roles that spark the most joy. Sound design, stage management, scenic design, directing, even marketing—as a theatre major at Boston College, she’s done them all.
“I always tell people I do everything except act,” she said with a laugh. “Everything you don’t see is what I enjoy doing.”
This week, Telegdy will showcase another of her talents: playwriting, during the Theatre Department’s “New Voices” event. From February 17-20, three original student plays will be performed each night in the Bonn Studio Theater, directed by Professor Scott Cummings. Works include “Appassionata” by Aidan O'Neill '23, and “Channels” by Katie Meade '22. Telegdy’s play, “All the Bad Kids Go To Mars,” will be the finale performance.
“It's a ridiculous comedy with some themes about sex and growing up, what home means to us, and new beginnings,” explained Telegdy. “We start our journey as they enter the spaceship.”
“Bad Kids” isn’t the first play Telegdy has written (“I have a good amount of plays in my back pocket,” she said) but it’s the first of her longer plays to go into production. The process began in the fall of 2020, in Cummings’ Playwriting I course, and involved a year’s worth of revisions and tweaks. In November, Telegdy sat in on auditions, watching her peers read from a script of her own creation. More revisions followed.
“Some things make so much sense on paper, but when you hear them out loud, they’re actually horrible and not at all funny,” she explained. “Luckily we had a couple of weeks to do edits before the script was finalized.”
The overall experience was grueling but also eye-opening, helping Telegdy recognize her passion for playwriting and directing. After graduation, she plans to pursue a career that will allow her to do both.
“I've always been involved in theater, but taking Playwriting I made me realize that I might want to be a playwright,” she said. “It changed my trajectory of what I want to do after school and what I’m focused on now.”
A Los Angeles native, Telegdy arrived at Boston College with a healthy enthusiasm for the arts. In addition to declaring a major in theatre (as well as applied psychology and human development) she joined the contemporary theatre club on campus, where she is currently the technical director, and got a job doing marketing for the Theatre Department. She also signed up as an intern DJ at WZBC, Boston College’s student-run radio station.
“The Z” as Telegdy and others affectionately call it, ended up becoming a formative part of Telegdy’s BC experience. She met her best friend in the recording studio (together they produce “The Lauren and Lily Show”) and has spent hours pouring over the station’s impressive physical music library, which spans decades and includes CDs and records sent to the station by artists like Bob Dylan and Nirvana. In January, Telegdy became the WZBC’s new general manager, putting her in charge of overall station operations, which include more than 70 shows and in-studio performances by up-and-coming artists.
The new role, and her new play, have made for a busy semester, but as someone who thrives on creative energy, Telegdy has never felt more inspired.
“I have a tendency to sign up for a lot of things—at least I’ve been told that—but I would rather do everything than miss out on an opportunity,” she said. “I could talk about WZBC for hours because I love it so much, and I feel the same way about our theatre department. I just love everything I do, and you find time to do the things you love.”
Alix Hackett, University Communications, February 2022