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Penelope - A Music/Theater Event by
Ellen McLaughlin and Sarah Kirkland Snider
November 4-5, 2008 at 8 PM

Award-winning actor and playwright Ellen McLaughlin and composer Sarah Kirkland Snider bring their one-woman music/theater piece Penelope to Taplin Auditorium on November 4 - 5, 2008.  Lisa Rothe will direct the performance. The string quartet includes Olivia De Prato and Amie Weiss on violin, Beth Meyers on viola and Lauren Radnofsky on cello.

In the work, according to production notes, "a woman's ex-husband appears at her door after an absence of 20 years, suffering from brain damage. A veteran of a modern war, he doesn't know who he is and she doesn't know who he's become. While they wait together for his return to himself, she reads him 'The Odyssey,' and in the journey of that book, she finds a way into her former husband's memory and the terror and trauma of war."

(Penelope was the patient wife who knitted while she waited for husband Odysseus to return from the Trojan War.)

McLaughlin, widely known for originating the role of the Angel in Tony Kushner's Angels in America, has also appeared as The Homebody in Homebody/Kabul (Intiman Theater); Pirate Jenny in Threepenny Opera (Trinity Rep., Elliot Norton Award); Mrs. Alving in Ghosts (Berkeley Rep); and Titania in A Midsummer Night's Dream (McCarter and the Paper Mill Playhouse). Her plays include Days and Nights Within, A Narrow Bed, Infinity's House, Iphigenia and Other Daughters, Tongue of a Bird, Helen, The Trojan Women, The Persians and Oedipus.

She is the recipient of grants from the Fund for New American Plays and the National Endowment for the Arts. She is the winner of The Great American Play Contest, the Susan Smith Blackburn Prize and the Writer's Award from the Lila Wallace-Reader's Digest Fund. She has taught playwriting in numerous venues, from Yale School of Drama to Princeton University. She has been teaching at Barnard since 1995. She is a member of New Dramatists and has served on the board of T.C.G. for seven years.

Director Rothe has collaborated with McLaughlin on several plays, including the premiere of Mermaid at Blue Heron Arts Center and has directed at Epic Theatre Center, The Women's Project, EST and all over the country.

Ellen McLaughlin

Sarah Kirkland Snider

November 4-5, 2008
All performances at 8:00 PM


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