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LIFE IN LARAMIE - Southeastern Louisiana
University Theatre will present “The Laramie Project,” the true story of
a small town’s loss of innocence in the wake of a hate crime December
3-7 at Vonnie Borden Theatre. Starring in the production are students,
from left back, Bradley Barrios, Lauren Faraone, Abbigail Moonshower,
front, Sarena Wedig, Betty Turner, Jacob Zeringue, Josh Tillotson and Clarence
“THE LARAMIE PROJECT” COMES TO SOUTHEASTERN THEATRE
HAMMOND – Southeastern Louisiana
University Theatre will close out the fall 2002 season with “The Laramie
Project,” December 3-7 at Vonnie Borden Theatre.
Written by Moises Kaufman and Tectonic Theatre Project, the complex
and compelling story explores a true incident -- a small western town’s
loss of innocence after one of the most widely recognized and publicized
hate crimes of the 1990s.
The Southeastern production,
directed by Larry Gray, features the talents of eight actors who take on
the roles of more than 70 characters in the town of Laramie. The play takes
place after Laramie resident Matthew Shepard, a 21-year-old gay University
of Wyoming student, is beaten by two young men, tied to a buck fence and
left to die. The incident happened on October 6, 1998 and was motivated
by Shepard’s sexual orientation.
In the year following the murder,
Kaufman and actors from his Tectonic Theatre Project traveled to Laramie
where they conducted more than 200 interviews with citizens, revealing
as much about the collective psyche of the town and a person’s capacity
for hatred and compassion as the crime itself. The interviews with the
broad range of citizens, from teachers and social workers to bartenders
and students, resulted in the critically acclaimed play and an HBO special
“It’s a play that makes you think
without telling you to think and doesn’t force any one opinion,” said cast
member Josh Tillotson.
“The Laramie Project” has been
hailed by Time magazine as “one of the ten best plays of the year, a pioneering
work of theatrical reportage and a powerful stage event.”
“The Laramie Project” is for
mature audiences only due to adult language and situations, Gray said.
The cast includes Bradley Barrios
of Mandeville, Lauren Faraone of Metairie; Abbigail
Moonshower, Clarence Wethern, Tillotson, and Betty Turner of Hammond;
Sarena Wedig of Lacombe, and Jacob Zeringue of Bogalusa.
Stage manager is Maggie Riley
of Ponchatoula and set designer is Heather Martin, also of Ponchatoula.
Southeastern faculty members Steve Schepker and Robin Steptoe serve as
lighting-technical director and costume designer, respectively.
Gray is a long-time professor
and artist-in-residence at Southeastern, with a long list of theatre credits
in acting, directing and play writing both at the university and around
Tickets for the 7:30 p.m. performances
are $5 general admission; $3 for students, faculty & staff, and senior
citizens, and admission is free for all Southeastern students with valid
ID. For more ticket information, call the box office during operating
hours Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., at 985-549-2115. The box
office will also be open at 6:30 p.m. nights of the
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