Saturday, April 03, 2010

Taking Darfur to the stage as it fades from the headlines

By Fiona Zublin

Estimates vary, but some hundreds of thousands of people have been slain in the Darfur region of Sudan. The civil war has displaced millions, who are forced to live in refugee camps where gang rape is endemic and disease runs rampant. In 2003, government-backed gunmen belonging to nomadic African Arab tribes began exterminating villages of African farmers across the region. You can think of it as a conflict between Africans and Arabs, between farmers and nomads, between government and citizens -- when you think of it at all these days. The facts are complicated, the emotional truth even more so.

But emotional truth is what Winter Miller does. She's the author of "In Darfur," a play that seeks to put a face and a name to a genocide that has faded out of the headlines of late. The play, directed by Derek Goldman, opened at Theater J on Wednesday.

Miller, 36, is a playwright -- but in 2004, she found herself working as a research assistant for Nicholas Kristof, the New York Times columnist now known for his investigative work on Cambodian sex trafficking, child marriage and, of course, the genocide in Darfur. Read more >>>>>>>>

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