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Roles Cast in College Fall Play, "The Laramie Project"

September 19, 2008
The Anoka-Ramsey Community College Coon Rapids Campus Theatre Department has cast 18 talented students in the fall production of "The Laramie Project," a contemporary play based on the true-life murder of Matthew Shepard.

The public is invited to experience this powerful and timely play at Coon Rapids Campus Performing Arts Center, Oct. 24, 25, 30, 31 and Nov. 1, 7:30 p.m. An alumni performance is set for Oct. 25. An interpreted performance will be held Oct. 30. Tickets are $8.

"The rehearsal process has been exciting as well as exhausting," says Blayn Lemke, Theatre faculty and the play's director. Imagine 71 characters in 52 scenes played by 16 actors. Everyone in the cast is focused on creating the best telling of Matthew's story as possible. I am very impressed with the cast's dedication and enthusiasm for this project."

Below is the cast list of Anoka-Ramsey Community College students appearing in "The Laramie Project," including the multiple roles each will play.

Adam Jeska Adam Jeska, Anoka High School, 2007: Stephen Belber/Jon Peacock/Rob Debree/Murdock Cooper/Kerry Drake
Victoria Loeffler Victoria Loeffler: Amanda Gronich/Kristin Price/Newspaper #3/Sherry Johnson
Holli Richgels Holli Richgels, Andover High School, 2006: Reggie Fluty/Waitress/April Silva/Newspaper #4/Shannon/Lucy Thompson
Brandon Mingo Brandon Mingo, St. Francis High School: Moises Kaufman/Stephen Mead Johnson/Rulon Stacey/Gil Engen
Peter Kaiser Peter Kaiser, Anoka High School, 2004: Andy Paris/Baptist Minister/Newspaper #1/Conrad Miller/ Dennis Shepard/Mormon Home Teacher
Mike Haugan Mike Haugan, St. Francis High School, 2008: Greg Peirotti/Phil Labrie/Judge/Newspaper #2/Andrew Gomez
Andrea Kotzer Andrea Kotzer, Anoka High School, 1993: Barbara Pitts/Eileen Engen/Sherry Aaneson/Jen
Emily Moulds Emily Moulds, Elk River High School, 2008: Romain Patterson/Alison Meers/Catherine Connelly
Nate Turner Nate Turner, Spring Lake Park High School, 2007: Doc O’Connor/Matt Mickelson/Russell Henderson
John Vavrin John Vavrin, Columbia Heights High School: Matt Galloway/Anonymous/Doug Laws/Aaron McKinney
Cynthia Schroder Cynthia Schroder, Coon Rapids High School, 2007: Marge Murry/Rebecca Hilliker/Tiffany Edwards
Matt Green Matt Green, Anoka High School, 2007: Reverend Fred Phelps/Philip Dubois/Jeffrey Lockwood/Bill McKinney
Tariq Muwahid Tariq Muwahid, Champlin Park High School, 2006: Jedidiah Schultz/Dr. Cantway/Fr. Roger Schmidt/Governor Geringer
Lauren Haven Lauren Haven, Anoka High School, 2007: Leigh Fondawski/Sgt. Hing/E-mail Writer/Bailiff
Cayla Gillispie Cayla Gillispie, Coon Rapids High School, 2007: Zabaida Ula/Zackie Solmon/Trish Steger/Shadow/Foreperson
Brett Hedberg Brett Hedberg, Spring Lake Park High School, 2006: Jonas Slonaker/Aaron Kreifels/Reporter/Harry Woods/Cal Rerucha
Not Available Amanda Bray: Female Understudy
John Griffin John Griffin, Columbia Heights High School: Male Understudy

More About The Laramie Project
"The Laramie Project" is a theatrical examination of the prejudice of educational, economic, religious and sexual identity. The central action emerges from the death of college student Matthew Shepard and leaves the audience to witness how the act of his murder is interpreted by numerous members of Laramie, Wyoming, Shepard's small community.

Rendered as a series of monologue and allowing each actor to play several roles, "The Laramie Project" becomes a breathtaking theatrical collage that explores the depths of humanity and the heights of compassion we are capable of.

"This style of play is known as a documentary drama," explains Lemke. "The text is based on real life events and relies on the actual words and actions of the characters in the story. And this play is fast moving. I wanted to try to develop the humor that comes from the varying perspectives of the folks that inhabit the story. Humor is most poignant in drama when it originates from a release of tension the audience may experience. So if you want to laugh, it's okay."

Tickets are $8 each and available at the Anoka-Ramsey Community College bookstore, 763-433-1250, beginning Sept. 26. See more information about Theatre classes or the new associate's in fine arts in Theatre degree.