Students at Cheshire College – South & West’s Ellesmere Port Campus put their acting and production arts skills to the test, in an ambitious performance of Moisés Kaufman’s “The Laramie Project” on 21st and 22nd March.
An example of verbatim theatre, “The Laramie Project” draws on hundreds of real interviews following the 1998 murder of a university student called Matthew Shephard, in the town of Laramie, Wyoming.
Shephard identified as gay, and his murder was denounced as a hate crime, bringing widespread attention to the lack of hate crime laws in various US states.
This year marks the 25th anniversary of Shephard’s murder. Paul Moss, Acting and Drama Lecturer at Cheshire College, said that he was mindful of the production’s continued relevance in 2023: “The performance links perfectly with LGBT+ History month and serves as a sobering reminder of the fight against prejudice which the LGBT+ community continues to face to this day.”
Level 3, 4 and 5 actors, alongside Level 3 Production Arts students, were all committed to handling the production with sensitivity and respect. In addition to live performances, the show contained radio, TV and cinematic elements which students diligently recorded and filmed over an eight-week period.
Molly Jarvis, who is studying a Level 5 BTEC HND in Performing Arts (Acting), played several characters in the production, including Alison Mears, Tiffany Edwards and Romaine Patterson. Molly said that that working on “The Laramie Project” was “an honour,” going on to say: “I feel some people will forget that this play was about real people, and this really happened. The play impacted so many of us who took part in it, and I felt we really did the play justice.”
Performing Arts, Music and Technical Theatre students have access to a fully equipped theatre with control desks, lighting, and staging equipment for the duration of their studies.
Cheshire College are now accepting applications for September 2023 for those interested in studying a diverse range of subjects, designed to provide students with combined skills and knowledge that will fully prepare them for the next exciting stage of their life.
Visit www.ccsw.ac.uk to find out more.