Lewis and Clark Community College photo
The Prison Performing Arts alumni troupe presented “Going Home,” followed by a Q&A session, Wednesday, Feb. 11, 2015, in the Benjamin Godfrey Memorial Chapel as part of L&C’s Diversity Council programming.
GODFREY — The Prison Performing Arts will premier an original piece by its Alumni Theatre Company at 2 p.m. Tuesday, April 12, in the Benjamin Godfrey Memorial Chapel.
Prison Performing Arts is a 22-year-old, multi-discipline, literacy and performing arts program that serves incarcerated adults and children in the St. Louis area. The group’s alumni troupe performed for the first time on campus last February.
“We are excited to bring them back for the second year,” Assistant Professor of Sociology Jen Cline said. “We will be the first public performance for the new piece, which is titled ‘The Beginning of Myself.’ Inmates who participate in the PPA program have one-third the recidivism rate of the rest of those released from prison.”
The new work focuses on the human experiences of the group’s company members and their connections to family.
“This performance is a connection of real-world experiences and the academic humanities that is an important connection for students,” Cline said. “This is a fantastic opportunity for students in sociology, psychology, criminal justice, English and a variety of other fields.”
The group’s Alumni Theatre Company is the only prison alumni theater company in the United States. It is composed of former inmates living in the St. Louis area, who worked with Prison Performing Arts while incarcerated.
The performance is sponsored by the L&C Diversity Council, presented by the Mannie Jackson Endowment and Center for the Humanities and is a Lewis and Clark Arts and Humanities Project, with funding from the National Endowment for the Humanities.
“Everyone is encouraged to attend and it is free and open to the general public,” Cline said. “The event will last about an hour, with a half-hour performance and a half-hour Q&A.”
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