Auditions this week for Manchester’s fall play, The Laramie Project

Student and community actors are invited to audition this Wednesday, Aug. 28 and Thursday, Aug. 29 for The Laramie Project, Manchester University’s fall play. Adult men and women of all ages are needed, says the University’s new director of theatre, Joel Froomkin.

Auditions are 6 to 9:30 p.m. both evenings in Wampler Auditorium on the west end of the Administration Building on the North Manchester campus. Manchester will present the play Oct. 19-21, with a Sunday matinee. (Note: This is not MU’s Homecoming weekend.) Rehearsals begin Sept. 1.

Time magazine praised the play as "a pioneering and powerful stage event." On Oct. 6, 1998, Matthew Shepard was tortured and left tied to a fence in the outskirts of Laramie, Wyo. He died six days later. For The Laramie Project, the eight-member New York-based Tectonic Theatre Project recorded more than 400 hours of interviews with Laramie residents.

The Laramie Project uses words from the transcripts to create a portrait of a town forced to confront itself in the aftermath of this tragic event. A small ensemble of actors will create more 70 different characters says Froomkin.

“Our technical staff will create a large-scale production in Wampler,” he adds. “We're using the space in a way it's never been before – a great big set with lots of projections. It's going to be great fun.”

Manchester’s new theatre director is an award-winning former New York stage director. He also taught at Tisch School of the Arts for New York University. He holds a master’s degree in fine arts from University of Southern California.

Froomkin also co-owner and artistic director of The New Huntington Theatre, honored as the 2012 Indiana Main Street Business of the Year.

Copies of the script are on reserve in Funderburg Library on the North Manchester campus. Audition material, production clips, synopsis and other information are online at In addition, hard copies of the audition material are available in Winger Hall on the east side of campus. Those pressed for time and unable to prepare will receive coaching and guidance at the auditions. Contact Froomkin at

August 2013


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