About Face: Marking the Unmarked, the Honors Thesis of seniors Stephen Graf (Solo Performance) and Jacqueline Vitale (Dramaturgy) Premieres Feb 13-15


January 22, 2009-The Department of Theater at Swarthmore College presents Stephen Graf ’09’s Honors Solo Performance Thesis, About Face: Marking the Unmarked, on Friday and Saturday, Feb. 13 and 14, at 8pm, and Sunday, Feb. 15, at 2pm, in the Frear Ensemble Theater, Lang Performing Arts Center (LPAC). About Face explores the extremes and intricacies of race within the cultural landscape of the here and now through a white anti-racist lens. This original performance is the Honors Dramaturgy Thesis of Jacqueline Vitale ’09.

Using monologues, poetry, movement, song, and performance art, About Face questions both the invisibility and power of whiteness in a contemporary U.S. context. About Face combines and layers socio-cultural observations and personal narratives in search of a way for white people to confront the persisting problems of unawareness, privilege, and hatred that accompany whiteness. The piece asks not only how do the many facets of whiteness affect current race relations but also from where do white people build their base in the effort to fight racism.

Stephen Graf ’09 is an honors Theater major with an honors minor in Interpretation Theory and a course minor in Linguistics. He has acted in the Department of Theater’s productions of Harold Pinter’s Old Times, Dea Loher’s Innocence, Frank Wedekind’s Spring Awakening, and in the Drama Board’s production of Michael John LaChiusa and George C. Wolfe’s The Wild Party. He was the dramaturg for the Department of Theater’s production of Caryl Churchill’s Vinegar Tom. He has created various solo and group performance projects prior to this production, on topics such as humor and sexuality.

The production is written, conceived, and performed by Stephen Graf ’09. Maria Moller is the director. Jackie Vitale ’09 serves as dramaturg. Maria Shaplin is the lighting designer, with Cara Arcuni ’09 serving as assistant lighting designer. Daniel Perelstein ’09 is the sound designer. The faculty advisor for the production is Erin Mee.

The performances are free and open to the public without advance reservations. Each performance will be followed by a reception in LPAC lower lobby with the cast and crew of the production. For further information, contact Liza Clark at lclark1@swarthmore.edu or call 610-328-8260.