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Source: Marci Maullar, 785-532-6878,
News release prepared by: Rosie Hoefling, 785-532-6415,

Tuesday, Oct. 6, 2009


MANHATTAN -- Kansas State University Theater will perform its first production of the semester with the comedy "Speech and Debate," written by Stephen Karam, at 7:30 p.m. Oct. 15-17 and Oct. 21-24 in Nichols Theater.

The dark comical performance takes place in a high school in the small town of Salem, Ore. A witch-hunt begins after a scandal occurs involving a teacher at the high school. Following the scandal, three unlikely students, Solomon, Diwata and Howie, organize a speech and debate team to uncover the truth surrounding the outrage. The production includes musical accompaniment and contains some mature content.

"This play deals with difficult issues that affect the lives of students attending high schools and even colleges across America," said Marci Maullar, managing director of K-State Theater. "These issues, presented in a serio-comic manner, will be meaningful to most young people and their parents."

A former member of his speech and debate team in high school, Karam modeled the plot after a similar incident involving a mayor.

"Speech and Debate" is a Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation Media Award nominee.

The cast and crew for the K-State Theater's production of "Speech and Debate" includes:

Kathleen Henderson, junior in theater, Leavenworth, stage manager; Chris Auten, freshman in theater, as Howie, and Cassidi Stuckman, graduate student in theater, as a teacher and reporter, both from Manhattan; Erica Smith, junior in theater, Paola, as Diwata; Kyle Myers, sophomore in theater, Topeka, as Solomon; and Dylan Harris, senior in theater, Wichita, scenic designer.

Tickets can be purchased at the McCain Auditorium box office weekdays from 11 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., and also at the K-State Student Union's Little Theater box office Tuesday through Friday from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. To purchase tickets by phone, call 785-532-6428 during box office hours. Tickets are $8 for students, $11 for military and $13 for the general public. For information on group discounts contact Maullar at 785-532-6878.