Friday, December 19, 2003

Theaters Against War


(5-19-04)THAW's May Freedom Follies: Theaters Against War


Date: Monday, May 24 7:30 p.m.

Location: The Cherry Lane Theatre, 38 Commerce Street off Seventh Avenue, Greenwich Village

Trains: 1/9 to Christopher Street; A/C/E to West 4th Street

This is a free event; donations are welcome.

Hosted by Noel Salzman and Sophia Skiles

”After every recent U.S. military intervention ... the Pentagon has left behind clusters of new bases in areas where it never before had a foothold. The new string of bases stretch from Bosnia, Kosovo and adjacent Balkan states, to Iraq and other Persian Gulf states, into Afghanistan and other Central Asian states. Together, they appear to form a new U.S. sphere of influence in the strategic 'middle ground' between the European Union and East Asia, and may well be intended to counteract the emergence of these global economic competitors. This over-extension of U.S. military power risks increasing regional resentments (already being seen in the 'Iraq for Iraqis' demonstrations) and 9/11-type 'blowback' attacks. The Romans similarly used their ability to project military might as a substitute for their inability to develop respectful economic relationships, only to see their empire fall at the hands of humiliated civilians.” Zoltan Grossman, Assistant professor of geography at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire

Fallujah, Vieques, Mindanao, Okinawa, Port-Au-Prince…The US currently has troops in roughly 70% of the world’s countries – not including the increasing use of sub-contractors and unclassified military operations. THAW responds to the escalation of violence, human rights abuses and the use of torture in Iraq with May's gathering of artistic forces to look at both the long, sordid history of U.S. military occupation, as well as to the growing tide of protest worldwide. From Wounded Knee to Abu Ghraib – with notable US clandestine sponsorships of puppet regimes and/or supplying of money and arms to wreak turmoil in East Timor, Chile, Palestine, Equador, just to name a few countries – the export of US-style democracy historically arrives through the use of devastating force.

This month THAW is thrilled to screen the work of Al-Rowwad Cultural and Theatre Training Center for Children in the Aida refugee camp located outside Bethlehem in Palestine. ( A beacon of dignity and hope, Al-Rowwad aims to give Palestinian children a way to resist peacefully through theater. This extraordinary organization was featured in American Theater magazine from July-August 2003 in journal entries from outstanding American playwrights Naomi Wallace, Kia Corthron, Robert O'Hara, Tony Kushner, and Betty Shamieh, each of whom visited the Center.

A scene from my play "The Rules of Embedment or Why Are We Back In Iraq?" will be included in the show, as a reading. Alex Emanuel will be back as embedded journalist Ted Wolf, and I will be portraying New York Magazine Editor Harold Reynolds. Thomas Abbey also returns as our "most excellent" director. Alex's band Rollo is beginning to make some noise in the apple and will be playing a rooftop gig in Williamsburg this Friday.

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