CRANFORD, NJ - Union County College’s Drama Club will present a staged reading of “The Laramie Project” on Thurs, April 27, in the Roy Smith Theater at the College’s Cranford campus. Doors open at 7:00 p.m. and the performance will begin at 7:30 p.m. Admission is free and all are welcome to attend. Please note: the play contains adult language and themes. Parental discretion is advised.

“The Laramie Project” is the story of Matthew Shepard, who in Oct. 1998, as a student at the University of Wyoming, was kidnapped, severely beaten, and left tied to a fence in the middle of the prairie outside Laramie, Wyoming. His bloody, bruised, and battered body was not discovered until the next day, and he died several days later in an area hospital. He was the victim of this assault because he was gay.

Moisés Kaufman and members of the Tectonic Theater Project made six trips to Laramie in the aftermath of the beating and during the trial of the two young men accused of killing Shepard. They conducted more than 200 interviews with the people of the town. Kaufman and Tectonic Theater members constructed a deeply moving theatrical experience from these interviews and their own experiences in Laramie. “The Laramie Project” is a breathtaking collage that explores the depths to which humanity can sink and the heights of compassion of which people are capable.

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The members of the College’s Drama Club will present this dramatic reading. The following students comprise the cast: Cranford – Christina Foti (also an alumnae, currently attending Kean); Elizabeth – Kevin Angulo and Emily Del Toro; Union – Jordan Brown and Michael de Los Angeles; Plainfield – Rosario Cardona and Anajah Hamilton; Scotch Plains – Angelina Pizzutiello; Roselle – Louis Gaudin; Westfield – Jessica Allen; and from Newark is Hezekiah Crockett. Michael Hagerty, Academic Specialist for Music and Theater Arts, is the advisor to the Drama Club.

For more information about Union County College, or for directions to the Cranford Campus, please go to www.ucc.edu.