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November 17: Moisés Kaufman and The Laramie Project

November 17, 2014
kaufman-moises-imageMoisés Kaufman, the key writer of The Laramie Project, a play inspired by the 1998 homophobic murder of Matthew Shepard in Laramie, Wyoming, was born in Caracas, Venezuela on this date in 1963. The play draws on hundreds of interviews conducted by the Tectonic Theater Project with the people of Laramie; eight actors portray more than sixty characters. Kaufman, a Guggenheim Fellow in 2002, is also the author of Gross Indecency: The Three Trials of Oscar Wilde and 33 Variations. He made his Broadway directing debut in 2004 (for Doug Wright’s I Am My Own Wife) and received a Tony Award nomination for Best Director. In 2010 he directed Robin Williams in Bengal Tiger at the Baghdad Zoo, a Pulitzer Prize finalist. “I am Venezuelan, I am Jewish, I am gay, I live in New York. I am the sum of all my cultures.... I am not a gay writer. I am not a Latino writer. I am not a Jewish writer. I am a writer whose experience of the world has been tainted by all my experiences of it.” —Moisés Kaufman