On October 7, 1998, a young gay man was discovered bound to a fence in the hills outside Laramie, Wyoming, savagely beaten and left to die in an act of hate that shocked the nation. Matthew Shepard’s death became a national symbol of intolerance, but for the people of Laramie the event was deeply personal, and it’s they we hear in this stunningly effective theater piece, a deeply complex portrait of a community.
Moises Kaufman and his Tectonic Theater Project have written a play documenting the aftermath of the savage killing of Matthew Shepard, including the perspectives of both friends and strangers: The Laramie Project. This innovative theatrical composition, structured not in scenes, but in "moments," addresses the various issues relating to the tragedy of Shepard, a young gay man whose murder has since become a symbol for America's struggle against intolerance. Kaufman's approach is actor-based, as opposed to text-based; a side-effect of this actor-based approach is that in print form it seems as though something is missing. However, the play promises to move the reader with its authentic portrayal of a small town facing a terrifying event. Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.