The Laramie Project opens at Adelphi's Performing Arts Center

Laramie ProjectFrom February 15 until February 20, Adelphi’s Department of Theatre presents The Laramie Project, a docu-drama by Moisés Kaufman and the members of Tectonic Theater Project in the Olmsted Theatre at the Adelphi University Performing Arts Center (AU PAC), 1 South Avenue, Garden City, NY. Directed by Denise Fehrenbach ’76, M.A. ’90, the cast of eight actors play more than 60 roles. On October 6, 1998 in Laramie, WY, 21-year-old college student Matthew Shepard was targeted and beaten because he was gay. He subsequently died from his injuries. The Tectonic Theater Project—an ensemble of New York City actors under the direction of Mr. Kaufman—made several trips to Laramie over the next year to interview its affected citizens. Out of those candid interviews, came The Laramie Project, which the New York Post describes as, “an amazing piece of theatre… [that] leaves us sadder, wiser and tentatively more hopeful.”

Ms. Fehrenbach is delighted to return to her alma mater to direct this moving piece of theatre. Her work in the field of mental health has made her an advocate for the rights of the mentally ill, who are also easily victimized. “My daily contact has sharpened my awareness and increased my empathy for the victims of violence or discrimination of any kind. This play is particularly pertinent today when incidents of abuse and bullying have increased in the past year and the targets are specifically youth who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgendered, or simply perceived to be.” Denise Fehrenbach believes that, “The Laramie Project is a wonderful vehicle to encourage discussion about diversity, tolerance, and acceptance.” Famed openly gay actor Sir Ian McKellan responded to the creation of this play by saying that, “…I am very proud that it should’ve been a group of actors who have helped to bring this story to the rest of the world.”

Denise Fehrenbach is a member of Actors’ Equity Association (AEA), Screen Actors Guild (SAG), and the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (AFTRA). She received her B.A. in theatre from Adelphi and returned to receive an M.A. in theatre education, followed by several years of teaching Adelphi’s freshmen actors alongside Professor Emeritus Jacques Burdick, who chaired the Adelphi Department of Theatre when she was an undergraduate. Her previous Olmsted works include her original adaptation of Ayn Rand’s novel Anthem and the musical Godspell with the help of Adelphi’s Director of Music Michael Hume. After receiving an M.A. in creative arts therapy from Hofstra University in 2005, she became a licensed and board certified creative arts therapist who has conducted individual and group psychotherapy services with children, adolescents, and adults in inpatient and outpatient settings. Ms. Fehrenbach has most recently worked as an art therapist in a behavioral health program assisting mentally ill adults from Nassau County.

Individual tickets for this event are on sale now and will be available at the door for $15, $10, or $7 depending on seating. To learn more about AU PAC’s 2010-2011 season, please visit or call the AU PAC Box Office at 516.877.4000.

For further information, please contact:

Todd Wilson
Strategic Communications Director 
p – 516.237.8634
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