Posted by: csdailyblog | November 18, 2009

Students Present Darfur in America

Fourteen students and six adults participated on Sunday, November 15, in the fall reader’s theatre drama Darfur in America, a play about learning the difference between sympathy and empathy.  In Act I, several young couples are distributing information at a rally for aid to Darfur.  The audience quickly discovers that they know very little about the situation and have not done much beyond intellectualize about what being a refugee means.

Cathy Palmer, Gretchen, Jeff Rennicke, Opal, Dick, Trina Van Schyndel, and Anita Olson on stage in Darfur in America.

In Act II, through a “virtual reality” experience, one of the couples has moved ahead ten years to an America that has become little more than refugee camps in which Americans are being detained by stronger powers.  The UN, humanitarians, and various ambassadors make it clear that America is a dumping ground for unwanted humanity.  One of the couples from Act I is among those who are unwanted.  This couple discovers first-hand how helpless refugees are against larger powers.

Near the end of the play, the actors’ “virtual reality” experience ends and they talk about what they now know about Darfur and what it means to be displaced people.  This play was an effective way to show a current world situation as well as promote the concept that we have to learn to walk in others’ shoes if we are going to be a united world family.

Darfur in America was written by Rogers Keene and the New Voice Theater of Medford, Wisconsin.  The play has been performed in Medford, Eagle River, Washington, DC, and is available for production wherever people are concerned about the condition of the terrorized and underprivileged.

For more information about Darfur, please see the websites below for ways that you can make a difference.

CAST:
NARRATOR:  Hannah
TODD:  Dick
SARAH: Opal
MARY: Stephanie
BRETT: Quentin
MARIE: Sophie
CLAUDE: Gabe
DARLENE: Shay
MILITIA MAN: Michael
GOVERNMENT OFFICIAL: Anita Olson
UN HUMANITARIAN: Trina Van Schyndel
AMERICAN AMBASSADOR: Gretchen
CHINA REPRESENTATIVE TO THE UN: Cathy Palmer
SOLDIER: Phil De Long
JULIA: Maggie
PEACEKEEPER: Gabe
MOVIE STAR: Katherine
AID WORKER: Jeff Rennicke
WOMAN 1 IN REFUGEE CAMP: Stephanie
WOMAN 2 IN REFUGEE CAMP: Shay
MAN 1 IN REFUGEE CAMP: Quentin

SPOTLIGHTS:
William
Bill

POWERPOINT: Sandy Gillum

SOUND AND POWERPOINT TECH: Angie

DIRECTED BY Bernie Hupperts and Cathy Palmer

FOR MORE INFORMATION ABOUT DARFUR AND HOW YOU CAN HELP:

Frontline: On Our Watch (Crisis in Darfur) http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/darfur/

A great site to learn about Darfur and the killings, raping, and terrible treatment that is happening there. View an entire Frontline Program and choose from discussion, interview, to learn more about Darfur.

Church World Service  http://www.churchworldservice.org

Church World Service is the relief, development, and refugee assistance organization that works worldwide to meet human needs and fosters self-reliance.

MTV Networks on Campus: Darfur is Dying  

 http://www.darfurisdying.com/background.html

“Darfur is Dying is a narrative-based simulation where the user from the perspective of a displaced Darfurian, negotiates forces that threaten the survival of his or her refugee camp. It offers a faint glimpse of what it is like for more than 2.5 million who have been internally displaced by the crisis in Sudan”

(Post contributed by Cathy Palmer)

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Responses

  1. Sorry, Kim — we did not videotape the performance. We’ll keep that in mind for any future performances this year.

  2. Will this be available in video?
    So glad you tacked this topic. Thanks.


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