Playwright and Performer Carolyn Gage to present at University Forum Nov. 3
Wednesday, October 28, 2009
Contact David Tisdale, 601.266.4499
HATTIESBURG, Miss. – A renowned author and playwright with more than 50 plays, musicals and one-woman shows to her credit will be the featured presenter for the University of Southern Mississippi's University Forum Nov. 3.
Carolyn Gage, regarded internationally as a leader in the field of lesbian-feminist performance art and literature, will perform her award-winning “The Second Coming of Joan of Arc” Tuesday at 6:30 p.m. in Bennett Auditorium. Admission is free.
Gage will also present a two-hour actor’s workshop, “Beyond the ‘L’ Word” on Thursday, Nov. 5 at 7 p.m. in Stout Hall A. It is sponsored by associate professor of political science Dr. Kate Greene, and will explore the hidden and censored archetypes of lesbian culture through a series of dramatic scenes and monologues taken from lesbian history, pulp fiction, and drama. No prior acting experience is necessary to participate.
"We are fortunate to have such a compelling artist to conclude the fall 2009 University Forum series,” said University Forum Director Dr. Douglas Chambers. “I know that Gage's performance will be interesting and thought-provoking."
Her forum presentation will come from her collection of plays “The Second Coming of Joan of Arc and Selected Plays,” published last year and the winner of the 2008 Lambda Literary Award in Drama. Gage’s work has also been recognized by the Oregon Institute of Literary Arts with its Oregon Playwrights Award, and funded by grants from many foundations that support the arts.
Gage tours internationally and conducts workshops and lectures on lesbian theatre at a variety of venues. She has lectured at the Tisch School of the Arts at New York University and at Bates College in Maine. Her musical “Amazon All-Stars” was the first lesbian full-book musical ever published by a mainstream publisher, Applause Books.
She has also served as a contributing editor to the national feminist quarterly On The Issues and has been published in The Harvard Review, Dramatists Guild Quarterly, The Michigan Quarterly Review and The Lesbian Review of Books, among other publications.
Greene said Gage’s work explores many different social and political issues, usually by showing the connections between intimate relationships and political paradigms.
“She will introduce us to the real Joan of Arc, not the pious peasant girl of myth and Hollywood, and expose the brutal misogyny of both ancient and modern patriarchal institutions,” Greene said. “We will see how much and how little has changed for women. I believe the audience will leave the play exhilarated, angry, enlightened and ready to take on the world.”
University Forum is presented by the Southern Miss Honors College. Co-sponsors of Gage’s presentation are the Southern Miss Women’s Studies Program and 206 Front restaurant in Hattiesburg. For more information, contact the Honors College at 601.266.4533; for more information on Gage’s workshop, contact Greene by e-mail at
PHOTO: Carolyn Gage
About The University of Southern Mississippi
The University of Southern Mississippi, founded in 1910, is a comprehensive doctoral and research-extensive university fulfilling its mission of being a leading university in engaging and empowering individuals to transform lives and communities. In a tradition of leadership for student development, Southern Miss is educating a 21st century work force providing intellectual capital, cultural enrichment and innovation to Mississippi and the world. Southern Miss is located in Hattiesburg, Miss., with an additional campus and teaching and research sites on the Mississippi Gulf Coast; further information is found at www.usm.edu.