The Public Theater in New York City Hosts Speak Truth to Power
Kerry Kennedy and the Robert F. Kennedy Center for Justice and Human Rights, and The Public Theater (Artistic Director Oskar Eustis; Executive Director Andrew D. Hamingson) will present a one-night-only benefit reading of Ariel Dorfman's play SPEAK TRUTH TO POWER: Voices From Beyond The Dark, adapted from Kerry Kennedy's book of the same name, on Monday, May 3 at 7 p.m. All proceeds from the reading will benefit the relief efforts of Habitat for Humanity in Chile.
The reading, presented by Ariel Dorfman, Kerry Kennedy and the Robert F. Kennedy Center for Justice and Human Rights, and The Public Theater, will be directed by David Esbjornson and feature Elias Koteas, Alfred Molina, Julianne Moore, Viggo Mortensen, Aidan Quinn, Gloria Reuben, Meryl Streep, Stanley Tucci, and Debra Winger. All tickets to the reading are $175 and may be ordered at (212) 967-7555 or www.publictheater.org beginning on Tuesday, April 20. All ticket holders will be invited to an exclusive post-show reception featuring the cast and creative team.
Ariel Dorfman's haunting play, based on Kerry Kennedy's extraordinary book, chronicles the true-story accounts of heroic people withstanding horrific human rights abuses across the globe. Voices from around the world cry out against violence and oppression - from world leaders like Desmond Tutu to the unknown activists working on the ground level. SPEAK TRUTH TO POWER is a powerful and moving testimony of the will of the human spirit to rise up against injustice, even in the face of incredible darkness.
"By shining the light on human rights defenders around the world, who have displayed acts of extraordinary courage in the face of adversity, we can also help the people of Chile rebuild their lives and livelihoods," said Kerry Kennedy, the author of Speak Truth To Power, from which the play was adapted.
"We are very grateful to The Public Theater for aiding our recovery efforts in Chile," said Jonathan Reckford, CEO of Habitat for Humanity International. "We are delighted to have such notable individuals offer their support as we seek to rebuild homes and help families rebuild their lives."
ARIEL DORFMAN, the Chilean American writer and human rights activist, is a distinguished professor at Duke University and has written books in Spanish and English that have been translated into more than 40 languages. His plays have been staged in over 100 countries and have received numerous awards, including the Laurence Olivier Award (for Death and the Maiden, which was made into a feature film by Roman Polanski). His latest novel is Americanos: Los pasos de Murietta, and Houghton Mifflin will bring out the second volume of his memoirs in 2011. In July, he has the honor of delivering the Nelson Mandela Lecture in South Africa.
DAVID ESBJORNSON has been the Artistic Director at Seattle Repertory and Classic Stage Company in NY. Highlights include: The Goat or Who is Sylvia? (Broadway), The Play About the Baby (The Century), The Ride Down Mt. Morgan and Resurrection Blues by Arthur Miller (Broadway, The Guthrie), the world premiere of Angels in America: Millennium Approaches and the first public presentation of Perestroika, Homebody/Kabul (London), Neal Bell's Thérèse Raquin (CSC; OBIE), In the Blood by Suzan-Lori Parks (The Public), Tuesdays With Morrie (Minetta Lane) and Kevin Kling's How? How? Why? Why? Why?. Favorite revivals include: The Normal Heart (The Public), Hamlet (Theatre For A New Audience; OBIE), A Few Good Men (Royale Haymarket-London), All My Sons (Huntington), Much Ado About Nothing (NYSF), Mud and Drowning (Signature), Endgame (Drama Desk Nomination), The Maids, Entertaining Mr. Sloane (Lucille Lortel Award), The Entertainer (CSC), Farmyard (NYTW), Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, Summer and Smoke (Guthrie), Twelfth Night and Lady From Dubuque (Seattle Repertory).
KERRY KENNEDY is the mother of three daughters, Cara, Mariah and Michaela. She is the best-selling author of Being Catholic Now: Prominent Americans Talk About Change in the Church and the Quest basic rights, and to the preservation of the rule of law. She established the Robert F. Kennedy Memorial Center for Human Rights in 1988 and she has worked on diverse human rights issues such as children's rights, child labor, disappearances, indigenous land rights, judicial independence, freedom of expression, ethnic violence, impunity, and the environment. She has for Meaning. Her life has been devoted to the vindication of equal justice, to the promotion and protection of concentrated specifically on women's rights, exposing injustices and educating audiences about women's issues, particularly honor killings, sexual slavery, domestic violence, workplace discrimination, sexual assault, abuse of prisoners, and more. She has led over 40 human rights delegations across the globe. At a time of diminished idealism and growing cynicism about public service, her life and lectures are testaments to the commitment to the basic values of human rights.
HABITAT FOR HUMANITY INTERNATIONAL is an ecumenical Christian ministry that welcomes to its work all people dedicated to the cause of eliminating poverty housing. Since its founding in 1976, Habitat has built, rehabilitated, repaired or improved more than 350,000 houses worldwide, providing simple, decent and affordable shelter for more than 1.75 million people. Habitat for Humanity Chile has provided more than 6,300 housing solutions to low-income families since 2002, including new house construction, major rehabilitations, repairs and other housing improvements. There are Habitat projects in each of the five regions of the country (Antofagasta, Valparaíso, Región Metropolitana, Maule, Bio Bio and Araucanía). Habitat Chile recently received extensive training in working in disaster recovery and will help families affected by the earthquake build and repair their homes. For more information, or to donate, visit www.habitat.org.
THE Robert F. Kennedy CENTER FOR JUSTICE AND HUMAN RIGHTS (www.rfkcenter.org) is a nonprofit dedicated to Robert F. Kennedy's vision of creating a more peaceful and just world. For almost 40 years, the RFK Center has worked to advance the human rights movement through partnering with courageous grassroots defenders from around the world who have won the RFK Human Rights Award, some of whom are featured in SPEAK TRUTH TO POWER, and supporting exceptional authors and journalists whose work brings light to injustice through the RFK Book and Journalism Awards.
THE PUBLIC THEATER (Oskar Eustis, Artistic Director; Andrew D. Hamingson, Executive Director) was founded by Joseph Papp in 1954 and is now one of the nation's preeminent cultural institutions, producing new plays, musicals, and productions of classics at its downtown and at the Delacorte Theater in Central Park. The Public's mandate to create a theater for all New Yorkers continues to this day onstage and through extensive outreach and education programs. Each year, over 250,000 people attend Public Theater-related productions and events at six downtown stages, including Joe's Pub, and Shakespeare in the Park. The Public has won 42 Tony Awards, 149 Obies, 40 Drama Desk Awards and four Pulitzer Prizes. The Public has brought 52 shows to Broadway, including Sticks and Bones; That Championship Season; A Chorus Line; The Pirates of Penzance; The Tempest; Bring In ‘Da Noise, Bring In ‘Da Funk; On the Town; The Ride Down Mt.
Morgan; Topdog/Underdog; Elaine Stritch at Liberty; Take Me Out; Caroline, or Change; Well; Passing Strange; and, most recently, the current Tony Award-winning revival of Hair. www.publictheater.org.
All tickets for SPEAK TRUTH TO POWER: Voices From Beyond the Dark are $175, and the ticket price is entirely tax-deductible. Tickets go on sale Tuesday, April 20 and may be purchased at (212) 967-7555, www.publictheater.org or in person at the Public Theater box office.