- Posted by Scott Sawa 05 Sep
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Nothing Special is participating in a very special international movement protesting the Brock Turner verdict and other lenient rape sentences. Conceived by playwright Carolyn Kras, The Subject Project is coordinating staged readings of Kras’ play The Subject, concerning the sexual assault of Princess Sophia, daughter of King George III, and the royal family’s attempts to silence her from speaking out about her abuse. The aim of The Subject Project is to peacefully protest lenient rape sentences like that of Brock Turner, raise awareness and dialogue of sexual assault, and take action to reduce violence.
Directed by Renee Rock, Nothing Special’s presentation of The Subject will play at the Lincoln Belmont Library on Saturday September 24 at 2pm, and at Vagabond School of the Arts at 7pm. The reading will be free to the public, with donations being accepted on behalf of Rape Victim Advocates, in addition to the funds raised the preceding week at NSP’s Fight Night: Valkyries.
With the recent prison release of convicted rapist and Stanford swimmer Brock Turner after only three months, and a bevy of other priveleged males receiving miniscule jail sentences, The Subject paints a stark and timely image of the difficulties sexual assault survivors face in finding justice for the crimes done against them. With this in mind, Renee Rock jumped at the opportunity to direct: “The Subject is centered around the family of King George III and the alleged rape of his beautiful daughter Princess Sophia. Their story is hundreds of years old. This story, this subject, is hardly new. We’ve tried to blame the media, images in entertainment, and a lack of education. We have tried to explain why this epidemic exists and perpetuates throughout history.
“My heart with this project is to instigate a deeper and more well rounded conversation around the subject. I hope that we can start a wave of intentionality with how we parent, mentor, and guide young men and women as they journey into adulthood. How great would our world be if we could truly recognize that regardless of the situation or external influences, human beings with stories and dreams and hearts that can be broken are standing in front of us. Until we recognize that with patience and humility, we will continue to do irreputable damage.”
When Nothing Special Producing Director Scott Sawa was approached by Kras, his high school classmate at suburban Nazareth Academy, it seemed the perfect project for the company: “Following the revelations of abuse at Profiles Theater, during the time NSP was renting their space for our June production Cat in Heat, we (deservedly or not) felt implicated in their treachery. Our productions of The Subject and Fight Night: Valkyries are direct responses to this abuse perpetrated in our community – by showcasing strong and complex female characters, we hope to embolden the women of our community and encourage more sympathetic attitudes toward those who are survivors of assault.”
The Subject will play Saturday, September 24 at Lincoln Belmont Library, 1659 W Melrose St, at 2pm, and at Vagabond School of the Arts, 4001 N Ravenswood, Suite #504 at 7pm. Free Admission; Donations will be accepted on behalf of Rape Victim Advocates. Reservations can be made at www.nothingspecialproductions.com. The play will run two hours with a ten minute intermission, and will be followed by a post-show discussion.
Rape Victim Advocates (RVA) is dedicated to the healing and empowerment of sexual assault survivors through non-judgmental crisis intervention counseling, individual and group counseling, and medical and legal advocacy in the Chicago area. RVA provides public education and institutional advocacy in order to improve the treatment of sexual assault survivors and to effect positive change in policies and public attitudes toward sexual assault. Find out more about RVA at www.rapevictimadvocates.org.
Nothing Special is dedicated to spreading our mischievous mantra: If everyone’s unique, then we’re all nothing special. It is in that spirit that we share these stories of defiant women overcoming the expectations of society and family – their story is our story. NSP pledges to produce plays in a way that is always entertaining, thought-provoking, and visceral because:
We solemnly vow to never stop playing.