President Bill Clinton may be gone, but his controversial "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy still exists in the military. Obie winner Marc Wolf explores the issue, which allows gay and lesbian participation in the armed forces if they are not open about their sexual orientation, in Another American: Asking and Telling, traveling to Seattle Repertory Theatre Sept. 19-Oct. 26. The one-man show, performed and written by Wolf, opens in the Leo K. Theatre Sept. 24.
To create his piece, Wolf interviewed straight, gay and lesbian members of the military services (whose careers span World War II to the current armed forces), as well as civil rights lawyers, judges, professors and politicians. Their words, edited and cut, are used verbatim as monologues in Wolf's work. Among the characters are civilian Charles Moskos, Northwestern sociology professor and author of the "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy, a lesbian activist desperate to be reinstated, "Mary Ann," a gay Vietnam veteran who remembers cutting his fatigues into hot pants, and a soldier testifying against lifting the ban on gays before the Senate.
Before a successful OBIE-nominated run at the New Group's Off-Broadway space Dec. 7, 1999-Feb. 2, 2000, Wolf staged Asking and Telling at New York Stage & Film, Provincetown Repertory Theatre, Dixon Place and Mabou Mines. Since then, the show has traveled across the country, including San Francisco and Los Angeles. Wolf's Off-Broadway roles have included Ray and Kevin in The Party, Max in Bent and Platonov in Wild Honey.
Tony-nominated director Joe Mantello (Love! Valour! Compassion!) helms the show. Mantello's credits include Design for Living and the upcoming Assassins for the Roundabout Theatre Company, Eve Ensler's The Vagina Monologues, Neil Labute's bash and Paula Vogel's The Mineola Twins.
Tickets are $44-$36. Seattle Repertory Theatre is located in the Seattle Center at the corner of Second Avenue and Mercer Street. For reservations, call (206) 443-2222. Seattle Repertory Theatre is on the web at http://www.seattlerep.org. — By Christine Ehren