Alison Christy
University Theatre

KU Theatre to present play about African-American seamstresses

Wed, 03/27/2013

LAWRENCE — "Intimate Apparel," by Lynn Nottage, will be staged by the University of Kansas’ University Theatre in April. Performances will be 7:30 p.m. April 3-5, 9, 10 and 11 and 2:30 p.m. April 7 in the Inge Theatre in Murphy Hall.

As a part of its season, the University Theatre includes plays directed by its graduate students. This gives graduate students an opportunity to hone their directing skills by staging fully supported productions under the mentorship of faculty advisers. "Intimate Apparel" will be directed by third-year doctoral student Scott Knowles.

"Intimate Apparel" is set in New York City in 1905, where Esther, an African-American seamstress, has found success creating intimate apparel for clients ranging from society ladies to prostitutes. As she continues to make beautiful pieces of lingerie, she sews a patchwork quilt, which Knowles describes as “a hodgepodge of life, work, dreams and catastrophes.” A play about understanding the past through the present, "Intimate Apparel" seeks to examine the interplay of race, gender and class. Knowles’s production brings the voices and stories of traditionally forgotten and overlooked characters — the African American, the migrant worker, the woman — into the forefront and celebrates their complex history and identity.  

General admission seat tickets for "Intimate Apparel" are on sale in the KU ticket offices: University Theatre, 864-3982, and Lied Center, 864-ARTS, and online. Tickets are $15 for the public, $14 for senior citizens and KU faculty and staff, and $10 for all students. All major credit cards are accepted.

Members of the cast of "Intimate Apparel" are listed below with major, parents, high school attended and role:

  • Alyson Marie Griffin, sophomore from Apping, Ga., English major, daughter of Sharon Griffin, Greenboer High School, Mrs. Dickson
  • Isabella Hampton, freshman from Overland Park, theatre major, daughter of Oscar and Paula Hampton, Blue Valley Northwest, Mayme
  • Margaret Hanzlick, senior from Overland Park, theatre major, daughter of David and Janee Hanzlick, Shawnee Mission South, Mrs. VanBuren
  • Ashley Kennedy, sophomore from Lawrence, theatre major, daughter of Joe and Amy Barnes, Lawrence High School, Esther
  • Christoph Nevins, freshman from Overland Park, theatre major, son of Scot Nevins, Shawnee Mission School, Mr. Marks
  • Zechariah Williams, freshman from Overland Park, theatre major, son of Brenda Williams, Olathe East High School, George Armstrong.

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