Running Time: 85 minutes (no intermission)

"Edmund White's Terre Haute is… topical, transgressive and thrillingly dramatic." —London Daily Telegraph

A famous expatriate author travels from Paris to Terre Haute, Indiana to interview America's most notorious terrorist on death row. One man has a story to tell; the other a story to write. As the clock ticks away toward each man's inevitable end, a bond grows between these two strangers. Inspired by correspondence between Gore Vidal and Timothy McVeigh, Edmund White's Terre Haute is a taut confrontation between human beings and political ideologies. A Pacific Northwest Premiere.

A post-play discussion follows every performance.

 

Age Recommendation: 16+ for adult language and themes.
ACT Theatre's policy is to inform audiences of content, but to let parents, guardians, and teachers make decisions that they feel is most appropriate for youth and teens in their care.

Photo Credit: Ian Johnston

Cast 

Robert Bergin
Norman Newkirk*
Steve Gallion
Tom Dewey
Jake Ynzunza
    Harrison
James
Guard
Guard
Guard 

Creative

Aaron Clements Levin
Rick Araluce**
David Baldwin
Doris Black
Julia Buck
AJ Epstein**
Lois Greenberg
Cole Hornaday
Brianna Larson
Nathan Rodda
Kyle Thompson
    Director
Set Design
Technical Director/Scenic Builder
Costume Design
Dramaturg
Lighting Design
Associate Producer
Marketing & Promotions
Stage Manager
Scenic Painter
Sound Design 

ACT Staff

Michael Cornforth**
Cole Guinn**
Albert Mendez**
    Central Heating Lab Technician
Lighting and Sound Technician
Audio Programmer

*Member of Actors' Equity Association, the Union of Professional Actors and Stage Mangers in the United States
**Member of I.A.T.S.E., the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees, Moving Picture Technicians, Artists, and Allied Crafts.

I’d like to welcome you to Bridges Stage Company’s inaugural production, the Pacific Northwest premiere of Terre Haute by Edmund White.

In November of 1998, Vanity Fair published Gore Vidal’s explosive article “The War at Home,” in which he put the erosion of our country’s Bill of Rights center stage. The article caught the attention of Oklahoma City Bomber, Timothy McVeigh and a three-year correspondence between them ensued. McVeigh was executed in 2001 and the two men never met in person.

In 2006 Edmund White, the author, essayist and playwright, who was friendly with Vidal, turned the story into a freely imagined fictional meeting. And so Terre Haute was born.

What is Terre Haute really about? It’s about the friendship that develops between an elderly expatriate writer and America’s most notorious terrorist. It’s filled with emotional explosions, sadness, understanding, vulnerability, humiliation, sexual tension, story-telling, and yes, humor. And their common ground?… the belief that our bill of rights is being shredded by our own government.

In the play Edmund White looks at the terrorist not as a monster, but as a human being. As a dear friend of mine said, “when we demonize people we no longer look into our own heart because obviously 'we’re not like them.' But somewhere in our heart are the seeds that can lead any of us into very dark places, and that’s why we don’t want to understand the terrorist. We fear we might learn about ourselves.”

And yet, the story of the Oklahoma City bombing continues to haunt us. In late April of this year the NBC TV shows “Chicago Fire” & Chicago P.D.” combined to tell a story of an American terrorist who blows up a building filled with people. Why? Because we still don’t understand how it could have happened? Because we’re still grappling to understand it?

I would like to thank John Langs, Alyssa Byer, all the people at ACT, Lois Greenberg, Norman Newkirk, Robert Bergin, Peter J. Smith, Doug Stapleton, all our donors, and so many other people for without their kindness Bridges Stage Company would never have been launched.

Bridges Stage Company is dedicated to building awareness, understanding and acceptance of all people, cultures, and experiences as reflected in the greater Puget Sound area, by exploring our similarities and celebrating our differences throughout the past, present, and possible future.

So, welcome to our inaugural production – Edmund White’s Terre Haute.

Aaron Levin, Artistic Director