Original Comedy with Serious Message from Local Theater

  • Wednesday, Nov 9, 2016

Madison, Wis. (Nov. 9, 2016) – Edgewood College invites Greater Madison to a free performance of “Ben Franklin & Baron von Steuben vs. the Paine County School Board,” on Monday, November 14, 6:30pm, in Anderson Auditorium.  Huge on humor and heart, this original play from Madison’s TAPIT/new works Ensemble Theater, also has serious messages about inclusion in schools, and relating across differences, just in time for the post-election season.

The play chronicles the action that ensues when Ben Franklin and Baron von Steuben realize what's happening in the Paine County School District, where a history teacher’s revelation about von Steuben leads to controversy.   Danielle Dresden’s script transforms controversy to comedy as Franklin and von Steuben risk an intervention in contemporary affairs to correct the record.

The performance, in two acts with a ten-minute intermission, showcases the work of director and Theatre Arts graduate Emily Morrison Weeks ‘14

Morrison Weeks is “thrilled to have the opportunity to return to the place that taught me so much, to share this play.”   She credits her hands-on involvement in productions, coursework, and professors with developing her multi-faceted capacity in Theatre Arts.

“I’ve gone on to use my training to work as a director, actor, children’s theatre teaching artist and program director, makeup artist, stage manager, and as an associate producer for stage and film,” she said.

Dresden and Donna Peckett, producing artistic directors of TAPIT/new works, play the parts of von Steuben and Ben Franklin.  The cast also includes Francisco Torres, Krystal Lonsdale, Liz Light, and Issac Brieske.   Costume designer Rebecca Stanley rounds out the creative team.

Ben Franklin & Baron von Steuben vs. the Paine County School Board is sponsored by the School of Education, the School of Integrative Studies, the Department of Theatre Arts, the COR General Education Program, the Office of Student Diversity and Inclusion, the Women’s and Gender Studies Program, and the Social Science Department, with additional funds from DANE ARTS and an Edgewood College Educational Programming Board grant.