Thanksgiving play examines Native American issues Nov. 30 through Dec. 3

“The Thanksgiving Play,” by Larissa FastHorse, will be presented Nov. 30 through Dec. 3 at Ripon College. Show times will be 7:30 p.m. in Benstead Theatre, C.J. Rodman Center for the Arts. Admission is free, but reservations are recommended by calling 920-748-8791 or sending an email to [email protected].

In the play, good intentions collide when terminally “woke” teaching artists devise a play to celebrate both Thanksgiving and Native American Heritage Month. The group of white actors attempt to make a politically correct Thanksgiving play which is respectful toward Native Americans. The play highlights issues such as the lack of representation of indigenous actors, the erasure of Native American history, and assumptions about the Native American identity.

The author is a Native American playwright, director and choreographer who has written many plays with indigenous issues at the center.

The cast includes Inesha Wiseman ’23 of Hazel Crest, Illinois, as Logan; Christian Schmidt ’23 of Green Bay, Wisconsin, as Jaxton; Connor Elliot ’26 of Ripon, Wisconsin, as Caden; and Summer Schlieckau ’25 of Reedsburg, Wisconsin, as Alicia.

The director and choreographer is Lillian Brown, assistant professor of theatre. The technical director, scenic designer and sound designer is John Dalziel ’02, professor of theatre. Costumer and costume, makeup and hair designer is Andrea Williams ’04.

Other members of the technical staff are Rebecca Steinkamp ’23 of Vesper, Wisconsin, stage manager; Rick Veltstra ’24 of Sherrill, Iowa, assistant stage manager, scenery construction and lighting; Haley Young ’26 of Ripon, Wisconsin, light board operator; Emily Karvala ’24 of Iron Ridge, Wisconsin, sound board operator; and Sophie Walheim of Ripon, Wisconsin, costume shop manager.

Members of the costume construction crew are Maricarmen Dorantes ’25 of Milwaukee, Wisconsin; Rebecca Stienkamp ’23 of Vesper, Wisconsin; Sophie Walheim of Ripon, Wisconsin; and Grace Luebke ’24 of Ripon, Wisconsin.

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