IU Theatre debuts the first-ever Big Ten New Play Commission with Naomi Iizuka’s GOOD KIDS

January 16, 2015

Bloomington, IND –  This February the Indiana University Department of Theatre, Drama, and Contemporary Dance celebrates a bold new program to create more roles for female student-actors while generating opportunities for students to collaborate with leading contemporary playwrights.

Challenged by The Big Ten Theatre Consortium’s New Play Initiative to write a play that speaks to an issue currently facing college students, playwright Naomi Iizuka chose to address perhaps the most pressing crisis on the minds of students and faculty at American universities today. Good Kids is a fictional account of a sexual assault at a high school party – and its tragic repercussions – inspired by the recent Steubenville, Ohio case.

Over the last 20 years, Iizuka has made a career out of telling stories with a deep and abiding empathy. Her singular works – like Polaroid Stories and Skin – have been regularly produced around the country and Off-Broadway. Though she doesn’t typically write from her own experience, her plays have a distinctly personal air about them.

“The play reflects our national obsession with football culture and the way it can create an environment of entitlement and implicit permission among young men,” says Jonathon Michaelsen, the chair of IU Theatre, and the director of this production.

Throughout the two-week run of Good Kids, IU Theatre will host a series of panels on the topic of sexual assault, led by leaders of Middle Way House, Student Health Services, the Office of Student Ethics, and members of law enforcement (details below).

The Big Ten Theatre Consortium’s New Play Initiative has already committed to two more years of the commission, with the hopes of continuing the program for many years to come.

Full cast and creative team information: http://www.indiana.edu/~thtr/productions/2014/goodkids.shtml

WHAT: Good Kids, presented by the Indiana University Department of Theatre, Drama, and Contemporary Dance

WHEN: Feb. 6, 7, 10*, 11*, 12*, 13 at 7:30 p.m. / Feb 14 at 2 p.m.* and 7:30 p.m.
* indicates performances with post-show panel discussions

WHERE: Wells-Metz Theatre, Lee Norvelle Theatre and Drama Center, 275 N. Jordan Ave.

TICKETS: Regular admission is $25 for adults, $15 for students, $20 for senior citizens. 812.855.1103 or http://www.indiana.edu/~thtr.

For more information, contact Amy Osajima at 812-855-0514 or aosajima@indiana.edu


THEATRE CIRCLE LECTURE: Sexual Violence Support Networks, Feb. 6 at 5:30 p.m.

Post-Show Panels (panelists will be updated as they are confirmed):

Tuesday 10th after 7:30pm performance:
Discussion 1: The Law and Order of Sexual Violence
Confirmed Participants:
Laury Flint, IU Campus Chief of Police
Sergeant Becky Schmuhl, IU Campus Police
Michael Diekhoff, Bloomington Chief of Police
Mary Ellen Diekhoff, Monroe County Circuit Court

Wednesday 11th after 7:30pm performance:
Discussion 2: Sexual Violence and Online/Social Media Ethics
Confirmed Participants:
Professor Sandra Kuebler, Computational Linguistics

Thursday 12th after 7:30pm performance:
Discussion 3: How to Help Prevent Sexual Violence on College Campuses
Confirmed Participants:
Mark Houlemarde- Student Affairs Graduate Assistant
Valeri Haughton- Monroe County Circuit Court Judge
OASIS representative

Saturday 14th after 2:00pm performance:
Discussion 4: Preventing Steubenville: Combatting Sexual and Relationship Violence through Community Health Services


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