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“The Laramie Project” Opens Thursday, Challenging Dublin High’s Student Actors

April 23, 2014

by Jennifer Strasser (Dublin High School Class of 2014)

“The Laramie Project” opens this Thursday, April 24 for a four performance run: 4/24 -26 at 7pm and 4/27 at 2pm in Dublin High School’s Little Theatre. Tickets are $10 for adults and $7 for students. 

Savannah Qunitero and Jennifer Strasser

Savannah Qunitero and Jennifer Strasser

“Hate is not a Laramie Value,” reads a sign right on the outskirts of the town of Laramie, Wyoming; a place defined by a severe anti-gay hate crime. The sign speaks volumes for how residents felt after the brutal beating of a gay university student made national headlines and became the trademark crime associated with this small town. People struggled to get through the traumatic event and the aftermath it left behind.

The Tectonic Theatre Project travelled to Laramie and interviewed the residents, gathering opinions and experiences from all different viewpoints after the tragedy became public. From these interviews, they compiled the play that Dublin High School is putting on for our final show in the Little Theater; it is called The Laramie Project, written by Moisés Kaufman. This show encompasses the viewpoints of friends and family of the victim, Matthew Shepard, as well as the opinions of local priests or ministers, and follows these people through the townʼs grieving period.

Moraya Sousou, Andrew Turner and Keiva Bradley

Moraya Sousou, Andrew Turner and Keiva Bradley

Aside from bringing attention to an important issue, this play is thought provoking and means a lot to the members involved in this production. The amazing thing about “The Laramie Project” is how touching it can be to people of all faiths and backgrounds. Everyone is able to connect with certain characters because theyʼre not just characters in a play; they are real living, breathing human beings that are reacting to a truly disturbing crime.

Many members of the cast feel as though this play helps convey a message that is very prevalent in our society today, even though the accident happened over ten years ago. Junior actress, Kendra Wilcox, expresses that this play serves as a “representation of a group of people whose stories have been ignored for too long. [Doing this show] will mean that Matthew Shepardʼs death wonʼt be in vain.” This show makes sure that the world can think about the effects of hatred, and for that reason, this show is very powerful. Senior actress, Rachel Gregory, feels that, this play “is so much different than anything weʼve ever done before, and because of that, itʼs more important than ever that people listen.”

Cregan Sorvari

Cregan Sorvari

This production is a very life-altering show to witness. By coming to see the show, you are opening yourself up to a learning experience. As Claire Kantz, a freshman actress, says, by seeing this show we are “spreading a message of equality [and essentially] we avenge Matthew in the way he would have wanted.”

In the world we live in today where bullying is become more and more common, it becomes increasingly important to focus attention on acceptance. It is imperative that this message of equality is spread, not only for gays, but for any group that is being discriminated against for a trait that sets them apart from others. We need to inspire people to think before they act, and to be accepting of all of their brothers and sisters. Change is coming, and The Laramie Project is the first step.

Dylan Seeley (freshman), Cregan Sorvari (junior), Claire Kantz (freshman), Anne Griffin (junior), Savannah Quintero (sitting* sophomore), Nicole Schaarschmidt (sophomore), Makenna Elias (junior), Kendra Wilcox (sitting* junior), Keiva Bradley (sophomore), Andrew Turner (sophomore), Arash Hodjat (sophomore), Sara Vukojevic (sitting* junior), Savannah O'Callahan Jones (freshman)

Dylan Seeley (freshman), Cregan Sorvari (junior), Claire Kantz (freshman), Anne Griffin (junior), Savannah Quintero (sitting* sophomore), Nicole Schaarschmidt (sophomore), Makenna Elias (junior), Kendra Wilcox (sitting* junior), Keiva Bradley (sophomore), Andrew Turner (sophomore), Arash Hodjat (sophomore), Sara Vukojevic (sitting* junior), Savannah O’Callahan Jones (freshman)

 

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