Artist: Robert Schenkkan, Stephanie Richards
Confronting Bodies: Breaks Interstate Park officials
Date of Action: August 2001
Specific Location: Kentucky
Description of Artwork: Schenkkan's play, "The Kentucky Cycle," is a story about three families, two fueding white families and a black family, that are related through a Cherokee woman. The play covers two centuries in the Appalacian Mountains.
Description of Incident: "The Kentucky Cycle" was scheduled to perform, produced and directed by a graduate student at Roosevelt University in Chicago, Stephanie Richards, in Breaks Interstate Park in the summer of 2002. Park officials, however, told Richards that she must remove the f-word and "God's name in vain" from the script. Richard's wrote a letter to Schenkkan, asking him for permission to alter the work. The park superintendent, Carl Mullins, said that the park "rules and governs the park." On the other hand the park commission's attorney, Gerald Gray, believes that the park officials cannot censor the production.
Results of Incident: Mullins maintained his position, saying that if Richards does not change the script, the play will not run. Richards is willing to change the play if Schenkkan grants permission.
Submitted By: NCAC