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Grief and Cleansing Are Themes in Catawba College's Production of "The Women of Lockerbie"

September 12, 2008

Category: Academics, Events, Theatre Arts

"Hatred will not be the last word in Lockerbie." This line uses just a few words to encapsulate the theme from Catawba College's upcoming production of "The Women of Lockerbie."

The production runs at 6:55 p.m. Tuesday and Wednesday, Sept. 23 and 24, and at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Friday and Saturday, Sept. 25-27, in Hedrick Little Theatre of the Robertson College-Community Center at Catawba.  It is the first play of the Blue Masque's 2008-2009 season.

The terrorist bombing of Pan Am Flight 103 over Lockerbie, Scotland occurred on Dec. 21, 1988 and took the lives of 270 individuals – 259 people on the plane and 11 people on the ground.  Casualties included 189 Americans, 41 overseas study students, 35 students of Syracuse University; the average of the victims was 27 years old.  The incident is acknowledged by many global experts as a pivotal one in the escalation of terrorism and a precursor for the 9-11 attack.

"The Women of Lockerbie" is set in 1995, seven years after the Pan Am 103 bombing, on the uplands above the small town of Lockerbie.  The parents of a victim comb the hillside to find signs of their son, while the women of the village continue to deal with the tragedy in a very personal, practical and even redemptive way.

This work of fiction, with focuses on both grief and cleansing, is written in poetic verse for the stage by Deborah Brevoort and has been produced on every continent in the world.  It was the winner of the International Playwriting Competition, the recipient of the Kennedy Center New American Play Award and was named "Best Play" by The American College Theatre Festival.

"The New Yorker" called "The Women of Lockerbie," "a moving thoughtful explanation of how grief changes over time," while the "Daily Telegraph (of London)" noted that the production "catches the grim mood of a terrorist attack…it becomes almost unbearably moving."

Cast members include Mike Matthias of Georgetown, Del., as Bill Livingston; Betsy Foster of Baltimore, Md. as Madeline Livingston; Eleanor Withrow of Abingden, Md. As Olive Allison; Dustin Sullivan of Monroe, N.C. as George Jones; Amanda Lederer of Brandenton, Fla. as Hattie; Mara Stewart of Harricane, W.Va. as Woman 1; and Rachel Mehaffey of Leonardtown, Md. as Woman 2.

The show is directed by Dayna Anderson, Catawba professor of theatre arts. Crew members include Meghan Schneider of Berlin, Conn., stage manager, and Adam Stolzenberg of Cornelius, N.C., assistant stage manager.

Tickets to "The Women of Lockerbie" are $10 for adults, $8 for non-Catawba students and senior citizens, and group discounts are available.  Contact the Catawba College Theatre Box Office at (704) 637-4481 or by e-mail at





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