Marlboro College

NewsPress Release: 11/20/01"59 Places" Comes to Marlboro College

Performers of "59 places"

- On December 10 in Marlboro College's Whittemore Theater, choreographers Amie Dowling and Julie Lichtenburg will present a video of The Performance Project's "59 Places," a theatrical collaboration between Dowling, Lichtenburg, and inmates at the Hampshire County House of Corrections. The event will take place at 7 p.m.

The play was written by Joshua A. Washburn, a Hampshire inmate, and details his life as a child, starting at age 10, in the care of the Department of Social Services. For eight years, he lived in 59 different homes and 24 different communities, some for just one night. The result is a powerful glimpse of the life of a modern inmate, examining his place in society and how he attained it.

The goal of the Performance Project is to create artistic works of which the participants claim full authorship. The process encourages participants to reflect upon their positions within our society, using their ideas and feelings inherent in those positions as an entry point for the development of the work. This is achieved through discussions, exercises, and improvisational structures in movement and theater.

Dowling is a dancer, choreographer, and teacher. Currently, she is the artistic director of The Dance Generators, a dance company whose members' ages span six decades. The company offers concerts and residencies throughout New England. Over the past 10 years, Dowling's focus has been creating works in various community settings, including projects with at-risk youth and veterans. Dowling has taught at Smith, Mt. Holyoke, and Amherst colleges. She also trains artists and educators in ways to use the arts as tools for social change, offering semester-long courses in Community Crossover in the Five-College Dance Department.

Lichtenburg has a B.F.A. from the Art Institute of Chicago, an M.F.A. from the University of Illinois in Chicago, and a background in physical theater. She has taught at Illinois Wesleyan and Wesleyan University at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Her focus over the past 10 years has been her sculpture, projects involving at-risk youth, and work in prisons.

Lichtenburg also co-founded BOOM!theater with Elsa Menendez in 1994. BOOM! was a multimedia performance workshop founded in a men's medium-security prison in Connecticut in 1995. The project involved theater, writing, music, visual art, and movement. In three-and-one-half years, the group completed four works: "Shades," "don't touch the house," "Open Class," and "Stone Soup." Aside from performed works, BOOM! generated writings, costume, sculptures, murals, photographs and over 100 hours of video documentation of process and performances

This event is free and open to the public. The Whittemore Theater is fully accessible. For more information, please call (802) 257-4333 or visit the college online at

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