‘Balkan Women’ takes UW-Green Bay stage Oct. 16

Balkan WomenGREEN BAY — As part of its campus-wide 2008-09 Common Theme, the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay will produce Jules Tasca’s play “The Balkan Women.”

Guest director Carmen Roman—who has a recurring role in TV’s “Law & Order” and has performed for nine seasons at Peninsula Players in Door County—will lead a cast of UW-Green Bay student actors in this contemporary tragedy.

The play runs Thursday, Oct. 16, through Saturday, Oct. 18, and Tuesday, Oct. 21, through Saturday, Oct. 25, in the Jean Weidner Theatre of the Weidner Center for the Performing Arts, 2420 Nicolet Drive. Admission is $15 in advance or $18 at the door. All performances start at 7:30 p.m.

“The Balkan Women” tells a story of how the horrors of war are a daily reality for women caught in an endless cycle of violence. The story revolves around mother-daughter pair in a prisoner of war camp in modern-day Serbia, where they are suspected of igniting a fuel-depot explosion that killed 16 Serbs. Amina Jusic, a Bosnian, risks her own life to protect her activist daughter Samira.

The play features five characters—three women and two men.

Amina is played by Suzi Lindner, a senior from Poynette.
Lindner has performed in six other plays, including “Chicago” and “An Enemy of the People.”

Samira is played by Amy Kooiman, a junior from Freedom.
Kooiman portrayed Horatio in “Hamlet,” and was the director of “The Jungle Book Jr.”

Josh Weishaar, a junior from Marquette, plays Vlaco.
Weishaar has performed in four other UW-Green Bay productions, including “The Sleeper” and “An Enemy of the People.”

Derek Knabenbauer, a junior from Green Bay, plays Herak.
Knabenbauer is a theatre and psychology major. This will be his first acting experience on campus.

Jela is played by Alison Tyler, a sophomore from Stoughton.
Tyler has already performed in “An Enemy of the People” and “The Good Body.”

Jules Tasca, an internationally known and award-winning playwright with more than 100 published plays to his credit, has taught at Oxford University in England and has performed with a Commedia dell’arte group in Italy.

He has written “The Amazing Einstein,” which won New York’s Performing Arts Repertory Theater Playwriting Contest and has toured the country and played at the Kennedy Center in Washington D.C. Tasca has also produced a libretto for C.S. Lewis’ “The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe,” which is currently touring nationwide.

Roman has performed in a national tour of “Angels in America,” off-Broadway productions of “The Iphigenia Cycle,” “The Mysteries,” and “Paradise.” She received Chicago “Jeff” Awards for her leading performances in “Wit” and “Master Class.”

She has a recurring role as Judge Louise Einhorn on the television series “Law & Order,” and had a part in the movie “The Savages,” with Philip Seymour Hoffman (“Charlie Wilson’s War”) and Laura Linney (TV mini-series “John Adams”).

The campus Common Theme of “Waging War, Waging Peace,” is a yearlong program designed to engage the campus and community in the ideals of a liberal arts education and the UW-Green Bay interdisciplinary mission. It encourages faculty, staff, students and community members to focus on a general theme from multiple perspectives and have a shared experience with open discussion and critical thinking.

Title: “The Balkan Women”
Dates: Oct. 16-18 and Oct. 21-25, 2008
Time: 7:30 p.m.
Location: Jean Weidner Theatre, Weidner Center, UW-Green Bay campus, 2420 Nicolet Drive
Admission: $15 advance general admission, $18 at the door
Summary: A tragic, two-act play by Jules Tasca that tells a story of how the horrors of war are a daily reality for women caught in an endless cycle of violence.

Special Events
Playwright Jules Tasca will be on hand for a pre-show talk with the audience starting at 6:30 p.m. Friday, Oct. 17. On Saturday, Oct. 18, Carmen Roman will lead in the world premier public reading of Tasca’s newest play, “Remember the Old Days.” The reading takes place at noon in the University Theatre.

Suzi Lindner, senior, musical theatre major, Poynette.
Character: Amina Jusic.
Amy Kooiman, junior, theatre performance major, Freedom.
Character: Samira Jusic.
Josh Weishaar, junior, theatre performance major, Marquette.
Character: Vlaco.
Derek Knabenbauer, junior, theatre and psychology major, Green Bay.
Character: Herak.
Alison Tyler,
sophomore, theatre performance major, Stoughton.
Character: Jela.

Jessica Breest, senior, musical theatre major, West Bend.
Alyssa Falvey, freshman, theatre major, Waukesha. 
Megan Hedden, senior, musical theatre major, Dodgeland.
Meg Tresedder, senior, theatre performance major, Wausau. 
Jade Landry, freshman, theatre performance major, Kohler.
Derek Sklenar, junior, theatre performance major, Prairie Du Chien.
Jason Szmanda, junior, theatre performance and psychology major, East Troy.
Don Yarbrough, junior, theatre performance major, Antigo.

Carmen Roman, guest director.
Matthew Fayfer, senior, theatre performance, Appleton.
Position: assistant director.
Prof. Jeffery P. Entwistle, scene designer.
Prof. Kaoime Malloy, costume designer.
April Smet, senior, technical theatre major, Fond du Lac.
Position: lighting designer.
Donne Hansen III, senior, theatre tech major, Oconto.
Position: sound designer.
Timothy P. Kiefer, senior, applied music major, Germantown.
Position: composer.
Prof. R. Michael Ingraham, technical director and assistant sound designer.
Corey Pinchart, theatre shop supervisor, assistant technical director.
Erin Torkelson, senior, technical theatre major, Appleton.
Position: stage manager.
Brittni Werner,
sophomore, theatre major, Wausau.
Position: assistant stage manager.

The Balkan Women - UW-Green Bay - Fall 2008
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