A recorded and streamed performance of The Laramie Project in Kelly Theatre

Poster in the Fine Arts building.

The Laramie Project play being put on by West Liberty University’s (WLU’s) theatre department is scheduled Oct. 27 through Oct. 30 at 7:30pm and Oct. 31 at 3 pm. However, it is no longer available in-person at Kelly Theatre, in the Fine Arts building.

Michael Aulick, professor of theater, posted on Facebook on Oct. 20 in the The Hilltop Players Friends and Fans group, “Unfortunately, due to circumstances out of our control, we are changing the live, in-person performance of THE LARAMIE PROJECT to a recorded and streamed performance. We are making a schedule to film and we will announce how to view the performance ASAP [as soon as possible.] I will reach out to anyone who has already purchased tickets to discuss refund procedure.”

The Laramie Project is written by Moises Kaufman and the members of the Tectonic Theater Project. It is directed by Cassandra Hackbart. Tickets are available at wlularamie21.brownpapertickets.com.

Hackbart posted on Facebook Oct. 14, “In directing this show, I’m very proud of this cast’s growth and how they have helped me to grow in return!”

This play explores human compassion, and it’s depths. In October 1998, Matthew Shepard, a 21 year old student of the University of Wyoming was kidnapped. Shepard was assaulted and tied to a fence in the middle of a large field in Laramie, Wyo. because he was gay. Two men were accused of this crime. He was found the next day, but died in a hospital nearby several days later. Kaufman and the other members of the Tectonic Theater Project made six trips to Laramie over the course of a year and a half. This play is based on more than 200 interviews and experiences of the people of Laramie, Wyo. Some were directly tied to the case and others were the town’s people’s reactions.

Shepard’s story helped push a law called Matthew Shepard and James Byrd Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act of 2009. Byrd was an African American man who was killed in Texas in 1998 by white supremacists. This act with the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2010 helps hate-crimes get more authority for federal investigations and have state and local funding.

This month was named in 1994 by Rodney Wilson, a Missouri high school teacher. This month remembers gay history and the progressive nature of gay and civil rights movements.

To stay up to date to when the online version will be available keep a lookout on WLU’s social media.