Gavin Creel, Rachel de Benedet, Jamie LaVerdiere Will Take Part in NJ Premiere of 8

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15 Mar 2012

Gavin Creel
Gavin Creel
Robert Mannis

Dustin Lance Black's 8, about the federal court trial contesting the Proposition 8 voter ban in 2008 on same-sex marriage in California, will have its New Jersey premiere March 24 at Montclair State University's Memorial Auditorium.

Directed by Michael Allen, the 7:30 PM reading will feature Roscoe Orman ("Sesame Street") as Ted Olson, co-counsel for the plaintiffs; Jamie LaVerdiere (The Producers, The Pirate Queen) as David Boies, co-counsel for the plaintiffs; Rachel de Benedet (Catch Me If You Can) as plaintiff Kris Perry; and MSU president Susan A. Cole as Judge Vaughn Walker, who ruled in 2010 that Proposition 8 was unconstitutional.

Jeff Zarrillo, one of the four plaintiffs in the Proposition 8 trial and a graduate of MSU, will participate in a question-and-answer panel discussion after the performance, which is moderated by two-time Tony Award nominee Gavin Creel (Thoroughly Modern Millie, Hair).

Written by Academy Award-winning "Milk" screenwriter Black, the play is based on the trial transcript, first-hand observations of the courtroom proceedings and interviews with the plaintiffs and their families. 8 was first performed in New York City in September 2011 and premiered in L.A. earlier this month in a star-studded production that included George Clooney and Brad Pitt.

Other members of the creative team include projection designer Steve McCarthy, lighting designer Benjamin Lawrence and production stage manager Lauren Pennington. 8 is produced by Patrick King and the University's Office of Equity and Diversity.



The staging of 8 is presented in conjunction with the American Foundation for Equal Rights (AFER) and Broadway Impact, which are licensing the play to colleges and community theatres nationwide.

For more information and tickets, visit http://msu8theplay.eventsbot.com/.