Valley actors to
stage ‘The Laramie Project’
Express Arts Editor
It is true
that events sometimes define a place, sometimes accurately, sometimes not.
Take, for example, Laramie, Wyo. In October 1998, a gay college student
named Mathew Shepard was lured from a bar there, kidnapped, tied to a
fence, beaten with the butt of a gun, and left to die. The story became a
national one, with all sorts of generalizations about Laramie being thrown
Moisés Kaufman, a New York-based writer and director of the Tectonic
Theatre Project. A month after the murder, Kaufman and nine members of the
theater group flew to Laramie to interview anyone they could about their
reactions to the crime. One year and 200 interviews later, the group
emerged with the play "The Laramie Project." It proved to be
much richer in revelation about the people of Laramie and every other town
in America, for that matter, than any news story could be.
Kane and more than 15 valley actors, including Pamela Sue Martin, will
perform a staged reading of "The Laramie Project" Sunday, 6:30
p.m., at St. Thomas Episcopal Church in Ketchum. The Interplanetary
Theatre Group is presenting the reading free of charge.
60 parts in the play, with many actors playing more than one role. Other
actors slotted to read are Kathy Wygle, Bill Nagel, Scott Creighton and
play deals with many issues, Kane said one of the central questions it
addresses is: "Were they (the perpetrators of the crime) sociopaths
or just part of the community?"
interview with American Theatre magazine, the director Kaufman said:
"The experience of working on ‘The Laramie Project’ has been one
of great sadness, great beauty and, perhaps most importantly, great
revelation—about our nation, about our ideas, about ourselves."
adaptation of the play was the opening night film Jan. 10 at the Sundance
Film Festival. The film is tentatively set to air on HBO Saturday, March