Our Own Voice Premieres Play That Was Placed On A Pandemic Pause
Our Own Voice Theatre Troupe is delighted to announce a return to the stage after three years on pandemic hiatus. During spring of 2020, the local theatre company was holding rehearsals for Mora Play, a modern twist on the classic medieval morality play. Three years later, Mora Play will finally come to life on stage at TheatreWorks in Overton Square from May 26 through June 4. Playwright Sarah Rushakoff and Founding Director Bill Baker are co-directing the production, with lots of collaboration from cast members and workshop participants.
According to Baker, “morality plays were popular in Europe during the 15th & 16th Centuries and were often performed in community squares for the everyday citizen since most religious services at the time were done in Latin, and not everybody could understand them. What Sarah has done in writing this play is allowed the company to explore a series of questions to find out what a morality play might look like in 21st-century terms. A play without oppressive religious overtones, but instead addressing how we move through the world together with an awareness of one another from a secular view.”
“I’m making it the humanist version, with the idea that people can do good without the promise of a reward and avoid doing evil without the threat of punishment, which is opposite of the original morality plays,” said Rushakoff. “It just always nagged at me that some people who are very religious make it sound very difficult to just be good and do good things. And when you look at a lot of religious zealots today and what they say, a lot of it is not what you would call moral goals. It’s capitalism, greed, hate, dishonesty, willful ignorance. During early workshops, we landed on our own modern definition of sin: anything that prevents or breaks a connection between people. So the flip side of that is, a good deed is building or facilitating a connection between people. That’s what we hope to do.”
The thoughtful questions explored in the process of creating Mora Play allowed the players to create a world for the audience where they are on a quest to find answers that fit current times. How do we know what the rules are when they are unspoken? What if they seem unfair? What happens when we break them? Does everyone face the same consequences? And what about how we treat each other? Do good deeds make a difference? The central character, Mora, wants to find a place that's better than the one she knows. She travels far and wide, discovers strange places with rules that she's not used to, and meets folks who have different ideas of following the rules.
Come see Mora Play at TheatreWorks @ The Square located in Overton Square at the intersection of Florence & Monroe at 2085 Monroe. The show runs two weekends May 26–June 4 with performances on Fridays & Saturdays at 8pm and matinees on Sundays at 3pm. Tickets are $15 for General Admission and $12 for Students & Seniors. Box Office opens 30 minutes before curtain and payment forms include cash, Venmo, and Paypal. For more information about Mora Play please contact [email protected] or visit Our Own Voice Theatre Troupe’s Facebook Page at https://www.facebook.com/ourownvoicetheatretroupe/
Created in 1991, the Our Own Voice Theatre Troupe is an organization working to empower people marginalized by mental illness, and striving to engage our community in dialogue about mental health.