ALAMOSA – The Adams State University Theatre program opens its 2017-2018 season with The Diary of Anne Frank. Tickets go on sale Monday, Sept. 11, at the ASU Theatre Box Office.
The stage play, directed by Dr. John H. Taylor, professor of theatre, is based on the book Anne Frank: The Diary of a Young Girl that was edited and published by her father. This year marks the 70th anniversary of the publication of the book.
“When I learned that it was the anniversary of the publication of Anne’s diary, I knew in my mind, heart, and gut it was exactly the right play to stage at this time in our community,” said Taylor.
The Diary of Anne Frank is both a personal and political drama about a vibrant, funny, imaginative, opinionated girl on the cusp of womanhood. The Anne we encounter on stage shares the same thoughts, hopes, and dreams of any modern teenage girl. She argues with her mother, tests boundaries, falls in love, and tries to find her own voice.
Yet, of course, her story is not a standard coming-of-age story. Her life plays out under the most horrifying of societal and global circumstances. The characters’ joys, hopes, frustrations, and conflicts are set against the realities of the Holocaust and a world at war.
“For many of us, Anne’s diary served as our first introduction to the Holocaust. We know the story and how it ends. But the play is about much more than its ending. It is an inspiring story about how a group of people lived daily with hope – hope that the Nazis would be defeated, hope that the Allies would rescue them, hope that they would emerge from hiding and once again live their lives openly and freely. And that sense of courageous optimism is captured in the writings of a teenage girl,” said Taylor.
The theatre production is part of “Of Words and Walls: The Anne Frank Theatre Project at Adams State.” From September 22 through October 1, there will be nine days of events including the play, a talk by a Holocaust survivor, the screening of a new documentary, public forums, an exhibit from the Anne Frank Center for Mutual Respect, and much more.
According to Taylor, the project’s purpose is to “observe the 70th anniversary of the publication of Anne Frank’s diary with a call to remember the past so that we can engage in a dialogue about the present and future. Through studying our history, sharing our stories, and creating our art, we seek to celebrate the diversity that defines us and reject the artificial divisions which separate us. In doing so, we ask a very basic question: what is our responsibility to one another?”
The opening night performance on September 22 is special event celebrating the naming of the theatre space as the San Luis Valley Federal Bank Main Stage Theatre. The public opening on September 23 will include a “Hate Has No Home Here” candlelight walk at the end of the performance.
For a complete schedule of events for Of Words and Walls visit theatre.adams.edu and click Performance Schedule.
Public performances of The Diary of Anne Frank begin at 7:30 p.m. Sept. 23, 29, 30 and 2 p.m. Oct. 1.
Tickets are $10 for general public, $9 for seniors and students, and free to Associated Students and Faculty with current Adams State identification. The box office number is 719-587-8499.