Palace of the End

Co-Director Katrina Dunn tells us why we don’t want to miss

Palace of the End

Written by: Judith Thompson

Directed by: Katrina Dunn, David Bloom and Mindy Parfitt

Starring: Alexa Devine, Russell Roberts and Laara Sadiq

Presented by: Touchstone Theatre, Felix Culpa and Horseshoes and Hand Grenades Theatre

Taking its ominous title from the former royal palace that housed Saddam Hussein’s torture chamber, Thompson’s docudrama uses a triad of monologues to tell three real-life tales of Iraq before and after the U.S.-led invasion: that of Lynndie England (Alexa Devine), the young American soldier prosecuted for abuse of Iraqi prisoners at Abu Ghraib; David Kelly (Russell Roberts), the British weapons inspector who committed suicide during the build-up to the invasion; and the spirit of Iraqi dissident Nehrjas Al Saffarh (Laara Sadiq) recalling her nightmarish experience with the Ba’athist Regime.

Palace of the End is an artistic response to an ongoing event: the occupation of Iraq. Playwright Judith Thompson’s characters speak to us in a voice both tragic and profoundly human. The piece makes no partisan political statements; neither does it prescribe solutions. While dealing with three very specific characters from recent history it transcends the war while raising a number of questions on a very polarizing subject. The producers anticipate strong reactions to the play, and have engaged several political authors and activists to participate in a series of Guest Lectures and Panel Discussions to increase audience awareness of, and involvement in, the issues raised by the play. From Touchstone Theatre Artistic Director Katrina Dunn: “A new work by Judith Thompson is always an event, and Palace of the End has proved to be hugely successful, provocative and influential in its short existence. I hope you will find in it, as I did, that potency of language and fearless ability to probe the darkness for light that has made Judith an international star.”

Opens Friday May 22 at the PAL Theatre (581 Cardero Street) and runs until June 6.

Performances are Tuesday through Saturday nights at 8pm, with matinees on Saturday at 2pm and Sunday at 4pm.

Tickets are $26/$20/$16 and are available through Tickets Tonight at 604.684.2787 or www.ticketstonight.ca.

Student discounts are available.

There will be a FREE preview on Thursday May 21 and a 2-for-1 matinee on Saturday May 23.

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