Yesterday we saw a matinee performance of “My Name is Rachel Corrie” at the Seattle Repertory Theater. The one-woman play starring Marya Sea Kaminski is a look at the life of Corrie, a young woman from Olympia who was killed by a bulldozer in the town of Rafah in the Gaza strip while trying to trying to prevent a Palestinian home from being destroyed.
This is more than just a political play. It is a glimpse into the heart of an idealistic young woman of talent and vision. Corrie was an aspiring artist and writer who went to Palestine because of her commitment to peace and her compassion for the Palestinian people. Taken from her own writings in journals and emails, the play presents Corrie, in her own words, as a young girl, as a student, and as an activist.
“My Name is Rachel Corrie” was the winner of the Theatergoer’s Choice Award in London, where The Guardian wrote: “Theatre can't change the world. But what it can do, when it's as good as this, is to send us out enriched by other people's passionate concern ... you feel you have not just had a night at the theatre: you have encountered an extraordinary woman.”
The play was co-edited for the stage by director Alan Rickman, best known for his roles in the Harry Potter series of films and New York stage productions of “Les Liasons Dangereuses” and “Private Lives,” and Katharine Viner, features editor of The Guardian newspaper in London.
The production opened at London’s Royal Court Theater to critical acclaim in 2005. More recently it was scheduled to open last March at the New York Theatre Workshop, but six weeks before opening night the theater announced it was indefinitely postponing production. They cited the current political climate as the reason for the cancellation. The production was later moved to New York’s Mineta Lane Theatre where it completed an 11-week run.
The play is 90 minutes long with no intermission. It runs through April 22. Ticket prices range from $15 to $48. For tickets or more information, call the box office at 206-443-2222 or go to the Seattle Rep Website.
After the play’s run at the Rep it will come to Olympia for performances April 27 and 28 at 8 p.m. and April 28 and 29 at 2 p.m. as part of the Evergreen Expressions Visiting Artist program. Tickets are $30 for general admission and $20 for seniors and students. They will go on sale at noon on April 2 at Rainy Day Records, The Evergreen College bookstore, online at BuyOlympia.com, the Communications Building box office, open from 12 to 3 p.m. daily, or by placing a phone order at 360-876-6833. A special preview performance will also be presented free of charge to Evergreen students. There is a $1.25 parking fee Friday only.
“We are very excited about bringing this professional production to Olympia, but also presenting it where Rachel’s story began,” said John Robbins, Performing and Media Arts Manager and producer of Evergreen Expressions. “In many ways she represents the quintessential Evergreen.