Antigone in Ferguson
Antigone in Ferguson is groundbreaking social justice project aimed at bridging the growing divide between law enforcement and local communities throughout the United States. The project was developed by Outside the Wire and PopTech, and is co-presented with the Onassis Foundation USA. Antigone in Ferguson presents dramatic readings by acclaimed actors of scenes from Sophocles’ Antigone—an ancient Greek tragedy about what happens when personal conviction and state law clash, and violence ensues—for a large, diverse audiences composed of concerned citizens, members of faith communities, and members of the law enforcement community, with the goal of generating powerful dialogue between these communities, fostering compassion, understanding, and positive action. The readings are accompanied by a large choir, performing the choruses of Antigone set to gospel music, sung and performed by a diverse ensemble, including police officers, local educators, and community members.
Hercules in Brooklyn
Hercules in Brooklyn is an innovative new project that will present dramatic readings by acclaimed actors of scenes from Euripides’ Madness of Hercules—an ancient Greek tragedy about an unthinkable act of violence commitment by an angry man with an invincible weapon—for audiences composed of concerned citizens, members of the law enforcement community, victims and perpetrators of gun violence, and the general public, in order to generate powerful dialogue between these communities, fostering compassion, understanding, awareness, and positive action.
Medea & Phaedra: Tragedies of Passion, Betrayal, and Revenge
Led by Bryan Doerries
With Elizabeth Marvel, Amy Ryan, Donnetta Lavinia Grays, and Bill Camp
BAM Fisher (Fishman Space), Monday, June 20 at 7pm
Theater of War founder Bryan Doerries leads an evening of performance and dialogue examining Euripides’ Medea and Seneca’s Phaedra, two ancient plays that timelessly depict how scorned passion can lead to revenge and, sometimes, unthinkable violence. Is Medea mentally ill, and, if so, how do we understand the chilling logic of her decision to kill her own children? What drives Phaedra to deceive her husband and attempt to seduce her stepson? In a world in which children are often the unwitting victims of dissolving marriages and predatory individuals, how do we advocate for and protect the innocent?
Featuring dramatic readings of scenes by Elizabeth Marvel (House of Cards), Amy Ryan (Birdman), Donnetta Lavinia Grays (The Wrestler), and Bill Camp (The Crucible), this unique event is moderated by Doerries, who uses his own new translation of Medea and Laura Weber’s translation of Phaedra to facilitate a lively audience discussion about the relevance of these myths to our lives today. Attendees will delve into under-discussed mental health issues facing our society today, such as postpartum depression and psychosis, and talk about recent incidents in our own community that bear an uncanny resemblance to the plots of these plays.
Rum and Vodka
Rum and Vodka is a public health project that presents dramatic readings from Conor McPherson’s one-man play Rum and Vodka as a catalyst for town hall discussions about alcoholism, substance abuse, and addiction as they affect service members, veterans, caregivers, clinicians, families, units, and communities. Each reading is followed by a panel discussion, culminating in a facilitated town hall discussion about acknowledging and overcoming alcohol dependence, substance abuse, and addiction. The project premiered for an audience of clinicians and military leaders at a DOD/VA Joint Behavioral Health/Mental Health Services Conference in Arlington, VA. The project has also been presented at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center for clinicians and patients, Coatesville VA Medical Center, MCB Quantico for 2,200 Marines as part of a pre-summer safety stand down event, and, most recently, for ARCENT/3rd Army audiences in Kuwait and Qatar at Camps Arifjan, Buehring, and As Sayliyah.
TAPE is an innovative sexual assault awareness/prevention training, developed and produced by Outside the Wire, that presents dramatic readings of Stephen Belber’s play Tape to military audiences as a catalyst for town hall discussions about sexual assault, rape, and sexually aggressive behavior as they affect service members, veterans, units, couples, families, caregivers, and communities. These performances, and the dynamic, interactive discussions that follow, are designed to evoke empathy, break down stigmas, and greatly reduce community tolerance for sexually inappropriate behavior by engaging audiences in candid dialogue about sexual assault and the complex social dynamics surrounding it, especially in the military.
The Dionysus Project
The Stavros Nicharchos Foundation funded Outside the Wire and the The Partnership at Drugfree.org to produce a series of dramatic readings from Euripides’ Bacchae in communities that have been profoundly impacted by drug abuse and addiction, followed by town hall discussions about the disease of addiction as it affects teens and young adults, as well as their families.
Job in Joplin
Outside the Wire, in collaboration with PopTech, presented two free dramatic readings from The Book of Job on Sunday, May 20, 2012 as a catalyst for audience discussions about the lasting impact of the tornado that devastated the city of Joplin on May 22, 2011. The performances were hosted by College Heights Christian Church and the Ozark Center, the largest and most comprehensive mental health provider in Joplin, MO, and featured award-winning actors reading selections from Stephen Mitchell’s translation of The Book of Job, followed by remarks by community panelists and facilitated audience discussions. These interactive events were intended to promote healing dialogue within the community of Joplin, fostering compassion, hope, understanding, and positive action.
Domestic Violence Project
Outside the Wire is developing a public health project that will present dramatic readings as a catalyst for town-hall discussions about the impact of domestic violence on individuals, couples, children, caregivers, and communities. The goal of the project is to create a safe space for dialogue about abusive and manipulative behaviors, power struggles and violence, the lasting impact of experiencing or witnessing violence in one’s home, and the role of support systems in these circumstances. This unique, participatory event is intended to generate open discussion among audiences to raise awareness, foster compassion, and inspire action with regard to the consequences of domestic violence as experienced by individuals, couples, children, and communities.