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“This is precisely the time when artists go to work.
There is no time for despair, no place for self-pity, no need for
silence, no room for fear. We speak, we write, we do language. That
is how civilizations heal.” —Toni Morrison
In the face of this past week’s devastating Supreme
Court decision to overturn Roe v. Wade, we feel it is important to
share a portion of our Luna Stage response.
Our 2022-2023 season will feature two plays that
directly confront challenges to women’s bodily autonomy, looking at
racial and economic justice and reproductive rights from the 1840’s to
the present day.
TORN ASUNDER(April 6-April 30)
In Nikkole' Salter’s Torn Asunder, Hannah, a
relatively contented enslaved woman, has her world rocked when her
master dies, and she is separated from her family, new husband, and
baby. Just as she begins to lose all hope to ever see her husband and
child again, the seceded south falls to the Union, the enslaved are
freed with the 13th Amendment, and Hannah has the opportunity to put
her family back together...if she can find them. Based on the
research of Prof. Heather Andrea Williams, Torn
Asunder dramatizes true stories of newly emancipated
African Americans trying to overcome the ever-present vestiges of
institutional slavery to reconnect with their families.
TWO ELIZAS(May 12-May 21)
In Two Elizas, Jenny Mercein
juxtaposes the true story of her ancestor Eliza Mercein Barry's 1847
U.S. Supreme Court case Barry v Mercein regarding
the custody of her daughter with Mercein's own complicated journey to
motherhood. Though separated by over 150 years, both women experience
the pressure on women to marry, the pain of losing a child, and the
resilience required of and inspired by motherhood. Two
Elizas candidly explores the taboo topics of mental
illness and miscarriage, aiming to spark conversation around women's
rights and bodily autonomy, intergenerational trauma, and loss.
Luna Stage develops and produces vibrant plays about
local and global experiences and is committed to nurturing the next
generation of audiences and artists. As Essex County’s only
professional regional theatre, Luna brings communities together for
artistic events that spark conversations, inspire understanding, and