Friends of the Earth International
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
SEPTEMBER 9, 2005
CONTACT: Words Of Choice
Jana Mackey, Lawrence NOW 785-840-5717
Kansas Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice 316-648-6141
Pamela Sumners, NARAL ProChoice Missouri-314-531-8616
Tanya Moore, NARAL ProChoice OK-918-313-1903
Cindy Cooper 212-560-2616
"Words of Choice" Responds to Reproductive Rights Emergencies in Three States as Nation Looks at Roe v. Wade
WASHINGTON - September 9 - "Words of Choice," a dynamic play about reproductive freedom, is heading to Kansas, Missouri and Oklahoma in September to generate discussions about women's rights.
With Roe v. Wade hanging in the balance with two openings on the U.S. Supreme Court, "Words of Choice" is focusing attention on the effects of the right to privacy on real lives.
The play, which weaves together comic and serious stories by 15 writers, will be performed in St. Louis, Lawrence KS, Manhattan KS at Kansas State University, Wichita and Tulsa. Created by Cindy Cooper of New York, it is directed by Joan Lipkin, artistic director of That Uppity Theater Company in St. Louis.
"Words of Choice" is touring three "red states" in a time period in which the right of privacy are under attack. The state attorney general has subpoenaed the records of women from two abortion clinics, and most recently, he sued the state to stop payment for the abortions of women survivors of rape. The governor of Missouri is spending $100,000 in an "emergency" special session to pass anti-abortion legislation. The U.S. Senator from Oklahoma decries the use of condoms for birth control or safe sex.
"I want to break open the conversation on reproductive rights. The right to privacy belongs to all of us. It cant be left to politicians trying to score points," said Cooper.
The true-to-life stories in "Words of Choice" touch upon hot-button topics such as emergency contraception, sexual assault, unintended pregnancy, abstinence education, and safe and legal abortion.
"It is funny, moving, informative, entertaining, and an evening of theatre like no other," said Joan Lipkin, director. Featured performers are Thomasina Clarke, Jacqueline Masei and Kimberly Mason.
Writers included in "Words of Choice" are Angela Bonavoglia, Kathy Najimy, Emily Lyons, Michael Quinn, Judith Arcana, and Justice Harry Blackmun. "Words of Choice" has previously appeared in over two dozen cities and states.
September 14 in St.Louis, sponsored by NARAL Pro-Choice Missouri at Central Reform Congregation;
September 16 in Lawrence KS at the Lawrence Arts Center, sponsored by Lawrence NOW with KU Students for Reproductive Rights and Planned Parenthood of KS/Mid-Missouri;
September 19 in Manhattan. KS at KSU sponsored by Manhattan NOW and Ordinary Women; September 20 in Wichita sponsored by the Kansas Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice at the First Unitarian Universalist Church of Wichita;
September 21 in Tulsa at the Univ of Tulsa.
All performances are 7 p.m. (7:30 pm. Tulsa) and are followed by a discussion. Other performances are at colleges in St. Louis.