Suzan Zeder?one of America's leading playwrights in Theatre for Young Audiences-is coming to Moline to attend the opening night performance of her play, The Taste of Sunrise, at Moline High School on Thursday, October 28th at 7:30 pm (see attached schedule).
The following day she will conduct workshops with both Moline and Rock Island theatre students who learned sign language in order to perform her plays. Rock Island High School will be performing the sequel to Moline's play, called "Mother Hicks," the following weekend.
When Suzan Zeder wrote Mother Hicks, she includes a scene with an adult Tuc, who is deaf. He says,
"You see all the things I cannot do because I am deaf. But you don't see that which I can do. I can sing with rivers. I can see the sharp sting of honey and I can taste the sunrise."
The moment these words flew off her fingertips into the page, she knew Tuc needed his own story. This is it.
Politically, Tuc's story examines the hardships experienced by deaf people before the use of sign language was widely accepted. Socially, the play explores what it means to be an outcast. Three of the leading characters all become outcasts in some way?a deaf boy, an African American female living on her own, and a teenage mom who doesn't know where she fits in. The leading role of Tuc is played by Max Molina, who is part of Moline's Wilson Junior High School's hearing-impaired program. His friend Maizie, played by Jenna Pautsch, is hearing but has deaf parents, so she is part of both the hearing and deaf worlds.
Audiences will find it remarkable to know that the entire cast learned sign language just for this production. They spent their entire summer taking hour-long ASL (American Sign Language) classes at MHS twice weekly in preparation for this play, which will be completely bilingual -- both spoken and signed. As the play unfolds, "shadow" characters will tell the story with words and signs. This is a powerful play, and it will be an unforgettable experience for all who see it.
For more information contact the director, Chris Thomas, at 309-230-8621.
Thank you for your interest.