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Theater of War: Joint Special Operations Command

Translated and Directed by Bryan Doerries

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Thu, Oct 05.2023

Theater of War is a groundbreaking suicide prevention training that presents acclaimed actors performing scenes from Sophocles’ Ajax—an ancient play about the suicide of a great, respected warrior—as a catalyst for guided audience discussions about suicide, safety, mental health, alcohol and substance abuse, and the impact of deployment on individuals, families, and communities. Using Sophocles’ play to forge a common vocabulary for open dialogue, these events are aimed at generating compassion and understanding between diverse audiences. Each performance is followed by community panelist remarks and a facilitated audience discussion.

Featuring performances by Chad Coleman (The Wire, The Walking Dead), Chris Henry Coffey (Trust, Chicago Fire), and Marjolaine Goldsmith (Company Manager Theater of War Productions).

Translated, directed, and facilitated by Bryan Doerries.

Hosted by JSOC POTFF.

About the play

  • Ajax by Sophocles

    Sophocles’ Ajax tells the story of a fierce warrior who is passed over for recognition by his command after losing his cousin Achilles in battle during the Trojan War. Feeling betrayed, Ajax attempts to murder his superior officers, fails, and—ultimately—takes his own life. The play tells the story of the events leading up to Ajax’ suicide, as well as the story of his wife and troops’ attempt to intervene before it's too late. The play also depicts the devastating impact of Ajax’ suicide upon his wife, son, brother, troops, and chain of command.

Cast Members

  • Chad Coleman Headshot

    Chad Coleman


  • Marjolaine Goldsmith Headshot

    Marjolaine Goldsmith


  • Chris Henry Coffey Headshot

    Chris Henry Coffey


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