Theatre Season Opens with 'A Lie of the Mind'

Event Details


Date: September 20 - September 24, 2011

Times: 7:30 p.m., Sept. 21-24 | 2:30 p.m., Sept. 24-25

Location: Edith Mortenson Center Theatre

Ticket Info: Tickets are $12 for adults, $8 for students. | www.augietickets.com.

Family dysfunction collides with love in the gritty American West in "A Lie of the Mind," presented by the Augustana Theatre Department. Showtimes are 7:30 p.m. September 21-24 and 2:30 p.m. September 24-25 in the Edith Mortenson Theatre.

Hailed as Sam Shepard’s richest and most penetrating play, the story is told in three acts and alternates between two families in the wake of a severe and life-altering incident of domestic abuse. Set in an isolated cabin in rural Montana, the story explores the disturbing and dangerous tensions that separate the families. This dark comedy is recommended for mature audiences.

Raising Awareness

In an effort to raise awareness about the worldwide epidemic of domestic violence, the Augustana Theatre Department is using the production to benefit the Sioux Falls Children’s Inn, an organization that provides free services to women, children and men who are victims of family violence.

Two student-led projects are planned:

  • Seventy-five student members of the Augustana Theatre Company will make fleece blankets for Children’s Inn guests from 3 to 5 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 23, in the lobby of the Edith Mortenson Center. 
  • Audience members are encouraged to bring donations of new children’s pajamas and new or gently used teddy bears and other stuffed animals for Children’s Inn guests prior to and following the Saturday, Sept. 24, performance. Augustana students will then clean and repair any damaged toys before delivering them to the Children’s Inn.

“According to the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence, one in every four women will experience domestic violence in her lifetime and more than 1.3 million women are assaulted by an intimate partner each year. Domestic violence is, indeed, a very real and disturbing epidemic across the planet, as well as in our own community,” said Jayna Fitzsimmons, director of “A Lie of the Mind” and an instructor of theatre at Augustana.

A Lie of the Mind

  • Showtimes: 7:30 p.m. September 21-24 and 2:30 p.m. September 24-25.

  • Tickets: www.augietickets.com or by calling 605.274.5320. 
     
  • Audience members are encouraged to bring donations of new children’s pajamas and new or gently used teddy bears and other stuffed animals for Children’s Inn guests prior to and following the Saturday, Sept. 24, performance. 

“The reality is, love can be overwhelming. Coupled with mental or physical abuse, it can be nearly impossible to break free from an abusive union. Through this play, and through our outreach to Children’s Inn, we’re hoping to raise awareness about this issue both on campus and in the broader community. The more we talk about it, the more we can crush the stigma and fear it carries.”

Watch a rehearsal and hear from the play's director in this feature by KSFY-TV.

The Story

It was hailed by the New York Times as a “rich and penetrating play; a 20th-century masterwork of a family portrait that excavates the profound ambivalence of kinship.”

Home, in “A Lie of the Mind,” the Times said, “is where they have to take you in; [and] where they … suck any sense of autonomous self right out of you.”

Originally written in 1985, Shepard’s critically acclaimed play follows two families in the wake of a severe and life-altering incident of domestic abuse. Set in an isolated cabin in rural Montana, the story explores the disturbing and dangerous tensions that separate the families.

Directed by Fitzsimmons, "A Lie of the Mind" features an ensemble cast including:

  • Casey Ring, a senior history and secondary education major from St. Paul, Minn., as Jake.
  • Elizabeth Yackel-Juleen, a senior theatre major from Windom, Minn., as Beth.
  • Glynnis Kunkel, a junior English education major from North Mankato, Minn., as Lorraine.
  • Josh Thies, a junior theatre major from Sioux Falls, S.D., as Frankie. Thies is also the sound designer.
  • Megan McDonald, a junior theatre and government major from Sioux Falls, S.D., as Sally.
  • Nate Hults, a senior theatre major from Glencoe, Minn., as Baylor.
  • Leah Hilsabeck, a senior English and theatre major from Okoboji, Iowa, as Meg.
  • Evan Livermore, a junior government major from Pierre, S.D., as Mike.

The production will feature scenic and lighting designs by Rj Fitzsimmons, costume and make-up designs by Jennifer Shouse-Klassen, and an original score written and performed by local musician, Xavier Pastrano.

Tickets are $12 for adults, $8 for students and are available at www.augietickets.com or by calling 605.274.5320.