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LGBT Author Leslea Newman Public Talkback on Bullying and Hate Crime – June 14


Leslea Newman photo courtesy of “Interview With Leslea Newman” on Matthew’

LGBT Author Leslea Newman Public Talkback on Bullying and Hate Crime – To increase public awareness about the harms of bullying and hate crimes, The Seeing Place is holding public talkbacks throughout the run of The Laramie Project. On June 14 The Seeing Place welcomes award-winning LGBT author Leslea Newman, who will do a talkback and signing for her critically acclaimed book, October Mourning: A Song For Matthew Shepard. (See bio below.) We’re also thrilled to welcome psychotherapist Ruth Rothbart-Mayer on June 18 who will talk about how creating art can help create healing in the wake of tragedy, as well as Matt Freeman, Education Director of Tectonic Theater Project on June 19th, who is coming to talk about how Tectonic used “Moment Work” to create The Laramie Project.

laramieproject_smlThe Seeing Place Theater, known for intense & intimate ensemble work, brings you this deeply complex portrait of a community’s response to the brutal murder of Matthew Shepard, the hate crime that led to the largest national conversation about tolerance in American history.

In the midst of a critically acclaimed 5th Season (which has included a rare revival of Sidney Kingsley’s, Men In White, and the first NY revival of Dying City by Christopher Shinn), NYIT Award-nominated The Seeing Place Theater announces its next production, The Laramie Project, the searing docu-drama by Moises Kaufman and members of Tectonic Theater Project which opens June 13, 2014 for a 3 week run in New York City.

“My secret hope was that they were from somewhere else, that then of course you can create that distance. We don’t grow children like that here. Well, it’s pretty clear that we do grow children like that here.” – Excerpt from The Laramie Project

Co-Directed by TSP’s acclaimed artistic team Erin Cronican and Brandon Walker, the production boasts a strong ensemble including Brian Stuart Boyd, Kathryn Neville Browne, Erin Cronican, John D’Arcangelo, Elle Emerson, Jonathan Miles, Christina M Pastor and Brandon Walker.

This play is being produced in close association with the Matthew Shepard Foundation, which seeks to “Replace Hate with Understanding, Compassion, & Acceptance.” In addition to keeping tickets affordable for New Yorkers at any income, for every ticket sold, The Seeing Place will donate $1 to the foundation.

Audiences can also take advantage of free public readings of two popular Moises Kaufman plays: The Laramie Project: Ten Years Later (June 16 & 24, 7pm), the chilling epilogue which asks the question, “How does society write its own history?” and Gross Indecency: The Three Trials Of Oscar Wilde (June 17, 7pm) which uses trial transcripts, personal correspondence, interviews and other source materials to tell the story of the downfall of the great man of letters whose artistic genius has long been overshadowed by the scandal surrounding his imprisonment. We’re also honored to announce a reading of a new play by Gregory G Allen, Well With My Soul (June 23, 7pm), the story of a gay man who becomes a pastor to try to “pray away the gay” in himself and others. Told in a non-linear way, Well With My Soul captures two lifetimes battling within one soul.


All performances at:

The Seeing Place @ ATA’s Sargent Theater

314 West 54th Street, 4th Floor. NYC

Production Dates/Times:

Running June 13 -29, 2014

Wed-Sat @ 8pm | Sat-Sun @ 2pm

Running time: 2:30, including two brief intermissions.


Compassionate Theater. Compassionate Price. 212-868-4444

For more information about these events, visit

About the play:


Tectonic Theater Project website

On October 1998 a twenty-one-year-old student at the University of Wyoming was kidnapped, severely beaten and left to die, tied to a fence in the middle of the prairie outside Laramie, Wyoming. His name was Matthew Shepard, and he was the victim of this assault because he was gay. Moises Kaufman and fellow members of Tectonic Theater Project made six trips to Laramie over the course of a year and a half in the aftermath of the beating and conducted more than 200 interviews with the people of the town. The Laramie Project is a breathtaking theatrical collage that explores the depths to which humanity can sink and the heights of compassion of which we are capable.

About The Seeing Place:


The Seeing Place Theater website

Now in its 5th Season, The Seeing Place is an actor-driven company: built by actors and managed by actors to be a base for actors who want to grow & hone their craft in a creative and supportive artistic home. We are forcefully committed to four elements of theatre-making: developing actors into thriving self-producers; honoring the craft of the actor’s process through rehearsal and into performance; bringing organic, “fully lived” storytelling to our community; and making theater accessible for all New Yorkers by keeping ticket prices low and affordable.

About Leslea Newman:


Lesléa Newman’s website

Lesléa Newman is the author of Heather Has Two Mommies and was the keynote speaker for Gay Awareness Week at the University of Wyoming in 1998, the year Matthew Shepard was murdered. She arrived on campus the day he died. In order to make a difference and carry on Matt’s legacy, she wrote the teen novel-in-verse, October Mourning: A Song For Matthew Shepard which has won many literary awards including an American Library Association Stonewall Honor. The book is a 2014 New York State Charlotte Award finalist. Ms. Newman works with the Matthew Shepard Foundation as a member of their speaker’s bureau and has given her presentation, “He Continues to Make a Difference: The Story of Matthew Shepard” at high schools, colleges, libraries, conferences, churches, and community centers all across the country.


About the Matthew Shepard Foundation:


Matthew Shepard Foundation website

The Matthew Shepard Foundation was founded by Dennis and Judy Shepard in memory of their 21-year old son, Matthew, who was murdered in an anti-gay hate crime in Wyoming in October 1998.Created to honor Matthew in a manner that was appropriate to his dreams, beliefs, and aspirations, the Foundation seeks to “Replace Hate with Understanding, Compassion, & Acceptance” through its varied educational, outreach and, advocacy programs and by continuing to tell Matthew’s story.


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Category: Indie It Art, Film & Theatre

About the Author: If you are reading this post it means that some incredible indie promoter, artist, writer, author or musician wrote this article. Many thanks to all indie artists. I appreciate your generosity with other artists, incredible determination to keep trying and willingness to share your talents freely. Indie supporters, without you, there wouldn't be an audience. Indie It Gal ~ Leisa Greene

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