FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Native Voices at the Autry Presents the World Premiere of:
Please Do Not Touch the Indians by Joseph A. Dandurand

March 19 – April 4, 2004
Fridays and Saturdays, 2pm and 8pm


Autry Museum of Western Heritage
4700 Western Heritage Way, Los Angeles, CA 90027-1462
Contact: Jay Aldrich
323.667.2000, ext. 329, fax 323.666.1295
E-mail, <jaldrich@autry-museum.org>
Web site, <http://www.autry-museum.org>
Hours, Tuesday – Sunday, 10am-5pm; Thursday, 10-8pm
Please direct e-mail inquiries about the exhibition to the museum’s address (above); DO NOT use “Reply” button, it will send to ArtScene.

LOS ANGELES – Native Voices at the Autry is devoted to developing new works for the stage by Native Americans. In November of 2003, three play readings were featured in front of a general audience to great reviews. The third play in the series was Joseph A. Dandurand’s (Kwantlen) Please Do Not Touch the Indians, directed by the Native Voices at the Autry’s artistic director, Randy Reinholz (Choctaw).This play has been selected from among a group of submissions to be an Equity production at the Autry Museum’s Wells Fargo Theatre in Griffith Park.

With Sister Coyote, Brother Raven, Mister Wolf, a tourist, and two wooden Indians, Dandurand’s tender and heart-wrenching tale portrays the struggles and dreams of Native Americans through history. His powerful storytelling style uses animal imagery and social stereotypes to create a strong and moving depiction of Native Americans and their ability to love, laugh, and survive despite tragic loss.

Casting of Native American actors is currently underway for the production. Casting for the November Festival of Plays was a great success, featuring over forty Native American theatre artists. Biographies of actors cast for the March production will be distributed as they are made available.

The play will be featured on Fridays and Saturdays at 8:00 p.m. with matinees at 2:00 p.m. The preview will be held on Thursday, March 18, 2004.The recommended viewing age for this play is 15 years and older. Admission is $12 for members, $15 for nonmembers. For reservations, please call TicketWeb at 866.468.3399 or visit <http://www.ticketweb.com>. Groups of 10 or more save 20%. Group leaders, please call 323.667.2000, ext. 391. For more information on this event, visit <http://www.autry-museum.org>.

For additional information on Native Voices at the Autry, visit their web page at <http://www.autry-museum.org/visit/nativevoices.php>.

Biographies
Playwright: Joseph A. Dandurand
(Kwantlen) is from British Columbia. He is a poet, playwright, fisherman, researcher, archaeologist, and proud father. He was playwright-in-residence for the Museum of Civilization in Hull in 1995 and for Native Earth in Toronto in 1996. His produced plays include Crackers and Soup (1994), No Totem for My Story (1995), Where Two Rivers Meet (1995), and Please Do Not Touch the Indians (1998) for the Red Path Theater in Chicago. Dandurand has also authored a radio script, St. Mary’s, produced by CBC Radio in 1999. His poems have appeared in numerous journals and anthologies and are collected in Upside Down Raven, I Touched the Coyote’s Tongue, and burning for the dead and scratching for the poor: looking into the eyes of my forgotten dreams. His most recent book, Shake, has just been published.
Director: Randy Reinholz (Choctaw), cocreator and artistic director of Native Voices, has twenty years of experience in theatre, film, and television in the United States and Canada. He is an actor, director, producer, and script developer, and he directed The Rez Sisters, an award winning play by First Nations playwright Tomson Highway (Cree). He was executive producer and director of the critically acclaimed Urban Tattoo at the Autry Museum and at venues in Vancouver, Toronto, and Calgary, Canada; producer of The Baby Blues at Centre Stage of Pennsylvania; and director of the critically acclaimed Equity productions of Jump Kiss and The Buz’Gem Blues. Cosponsor of the 2002 ABC Native American Showcase, Reinholz consulted on NBC’s Native American Showcase/Pilot Reading of Blood Brothers in 2003. He is a tenured professor and head of performance in the School of Theatre, Television, and Film at San Diego State University.

Native Voices at the Autry Advisory Board Members
Randy Reinholz (Choctaw), Native Voices Artistic Director
Jean Bruce Scott, Native Voices Executive Director
Duane Champagne (Turtle Mountain Chippewa), professor of sociology, UCLA
Dolores Chavez, coordinating producer of P.L.A.Y. at the Mark Taper Forum
Oliver Mayer, internationally produced playwright
Paula Starr (Cheyenne), executive director of the Southern California Indian Center, Inc.
Marjorie Tanin (Pueblo/Santa Clara@Kiowa/Hopi), actress and cofounder of the Native American Subcommittee of the Screen Actors Guild

About Native Voices at the Autry
In 2000, the Autry Museum launched Native Voices at the Autry, a theatre initiative devoted to the development of new works for the stage by Native American writers. This project brings established, mid-career, and/or emerging writers to the museum to workshop material with professional directors, dramaturges, and actors.



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