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An Enemy of the People: A Theater Project from America’s Hometown

Join us for a reading/open rehearsal of scenes from An Enemy of the People by Henrik Ibsen, a new version by Bryan Doerries, followed by a discussion with cast and community members about how the play resonates in Knox County today.

An Enemy of the People: A Theater Project from America’s Hometown will present acclaimed actors, elected officials, scientists, journalists, and local community members performing dramatic readings of scenes from Henrik Ibsen’s 1882 play An Enemy of the People to help frame powerful, guided audience discussions aimed at generating connection, understanding, compassion, and positive action.

The play tells the story of a doctor who discovers the water supply in his small, rural town has been poisoned by a tannery. Despite his efforts to convey the truth to the public, the doctor fails to save his community from environmental disaster and is ultimately scapegoated for his whistleblowing. An Enemy of the People was first performed in Norway in 1882, and yet it speaks to the present moment as if it were written for our time.

An Enemy of the People is co-presented by Theater of War Productions, the Public Library of Mount Vernon and Knox County, and Kenyon College.

Featuring performances by Benjamin Viccellio (Associate Professor of Drama and Film, Kenyon College), Matthew T. Starr, (Mayor, City of Mount Vernon), Jonathan Tazewell (Thomas S. Turgeon Professor of Drama, Kenyon College), Wendy MacLeod (James Michael Playwright-in-Residence/Professor of Drama, Kenyon College), John K. Chidester (Director, Public Library of Mount Vernon and Knox County), Alyssa Gómez Lawrence (Assistant Director of Community Partnerships, Kenyon College). Leeman Kessler, (Mayor of Gambier, Ohio).

Cast Members

  • Jon Tazewell Headshot

    Jon Tazewell

  • Matthew T. Starr Headshot

    Matthew T. Starr

  • Benjamin Viccellio Headshot

    Benjamin Viccellio

  • Alyssa Gomez Lawrence Headshot

    Alyssa Gomez Lawrence

  • John Chidester Headshot

    John Chidester

  • Wendy MacLeod Headshot

    Wendy MacLeod

  • Leeman Kessler Headshot

    Leeman Kessler

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