Essay Laramie Project

Essay Laramie Project-62
“The Laramie Project” is not written linearly—the story is told in moments that form a semi-chronological but entirely coherent story.The decision by director Barbara Karger to add a backdrop that remained downstage for the majority of the show did not distract from the sensitive and powerful subject matter of the script.

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“The Laramie Project” came to Trinity in the timeliest of manners.

Both relevant and enduring, the performance touched upon issues that were apparent in American society nearly 20 years ago and remain prevalent today.

If anything, the title slides, videos, and pictures that filled the screen eloquently complemented and supplemented the words being spoken by the cast.

Another unconventional feature of the performance was the decision to split the ten person cast across the 40 speaking roles.

The small cast – James Calabresi ’20, Caroline Cannon ’18, Anya Forsberg ’19, Pieter Hoets ’17, Hayden Mueller ’19, Precious Ogu ’20, Claire Pritchard ’20, William Tjeltveit ’20, Sarah-Kristen Vazquez ’19, and Dayla Whaley ’20 – seamlessly transitioned between roles that were each easily distinguishable despite minimal to no changes in costumes for the actors.

Karger’s directorial decisions pieced together the individual testimonies of Laramie residents to form a single, cohesive, collective experience, in a way that brought the town of Laramie to life like a character in its own right.17 came at an eerily convenient time for Trinity’s campus.A harrowing, poignant, and disconcertingly true story, “The Laramie Project” is a theatrical compilation of interviews from Tectonic Theater Project’s trip to Laramie, Wyoming, five weeks after the murder of Matthew Shepard, an openly gay student at the University of Wyoming.With the possible exception of the ongoing Wyoming State Archives collection of oral histories from those at the crime’s epicenter, the play, which is still widely performed, is the fullest extant record of the feelings and impressions of those who lived the story.In the theatre company’s 2009 follow-up , many characters extensively critique the local response, the spotlight the town endured, and in a real sense, one another.Erin Gannon ’18 A&E Editor “On November 14, 1998, the members of Tectonic Theater Project traveled to Laramie, Wyoming, and conducted interviews with the people of the town.” This is the opening line of Moisés Kaufman’s “The Laramie Project” and also the foundation upon which the play was developed and is structured.The Trinity College Department of Theater and Dance performance of the show in Goodwin Theater at Austin Arts over the weekend of Nov.“A literary and theatric legacy, meanwhile, came from a band of playwrights and performers from New York City who were moved by the unfolding story of how a town responds to tragedy, controversy and worldwide media a gripping tour through the actual spoken words of Laramie people drawn from hundreds of hours of interviews to show the outrage, the sense of being unfairly singled out, the quiet hope for change among gay and lesbian residents and the sometimes callous behavior of journalists.However, it was the cast that truly brought that experience to life.From the discovery of Matthew Shepard’s beaten body to the verdict and controversial death penalty decision, each member of the cast portrayed a markedly diverse array of characters.


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