This article was last updated on April 16, 2022
The Laramie Project Explores Reaction to the Murder of Gay Student Matthew Shepard
Repertory East Playhouse (Newhall, CA)
The story made headlines all over the country: In 1998 in Laramie, Wyoming, college student Matthew Shepard was savagely beaten, tied to a fence and left to die — for being gay. Two men were arrested and charged with kidnapping, aggravated robbery and attempted first-degree murder for the hate crime. One month later, when emotions were still raw, director Moises Kaufman conducted hundreds of interviews with the people of Laramie. From those interviews came The Laramie Project, a brutally honest and thought-provoking play about an outraged nation and a stunned Wyoming town. One of the last decade’s most performed American plays, and also adapted into a 2002 HBO movie, The Laramie Project is a heartrending theatrical collage that explores the depths to which humanity can sink as well as the heights of compassion of which we are capable.