Faces of Freedom is a vivid theatrical experience, using both an ensemble and monologues, to tell the true stories of the young immigrants of today and yesterday. Moving fluidly from past to present and back again, the play interweaves Maria's journey to America in 1907 with Tron's escape from death and imprisonment as a Vietnamese boat person in 1978. Against this backdrop, we meet the newest imigrants: Halima, whose family fled the Taliban; Vida, who is trying to find the courage to cross the first city street she has ever seen; Juana, whose fast-food counter is her passport to a better world; Carlos, whose skill with a soccer ball is his entry into a new school; Elena and Luis, a sister and brother from Mexico, who are each inventing their own ways to cope with a suddenly unfamiliar life; Semir, a young Bosnian boy, who can only find peace of mind at Dunkin’ Donuts. In seeing their stories, we see reflected our family's story of coming to America, and we learn—perhaps for the first time—the story of our newest neighbors, all of different cultures, facing risks and challenges, yet all of us united in our search for freedom. All of us Americans.
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- Type of Show Full-length Play
- Product Code F81000
- Cast Size 10
- Min. Royalty Rate $90/perf
- Cost $10.95
- Approx. Run Time 60 min
- Target Audience Middle School | High School
- Performing Group Middle School | High School | College Theatre | Community Theatre | Touring Group
- Genre Comedy | Drama
- ISBN(13) 9781583421994
- "I loved this play since I read it years ago. When I moved to this school, I knew it would be perfect for the students and community. The students weren't used to doing published work, but they knew how to do monologues, so this was a great piece to use as an introduction. Our student body and community are made up of first and second generations of immigrants, so many of the stories touched home. We had a talk back afterwards to allow the audience a chance to process the show."
- Review by Felicia Brown, Trenton Central High School, Trenton, N.J.
- "Wonderful, important stories to tell."
- Review by Theresa Donato, Orlando Repertory Theatre, Orlando, Fla.
- "Powerful! Just knowing these are true stories makes it a very emotional play. Makes you think ... which is good for our young ones (high school)."
- Review by Ginger Blaquiere, Our Lady of the Lakes High School, Waterford, Mich.
- "Faces of Freedom was well received by viewing audiences and is a great speech and drama contest piece. It offers young adult actors the opportunity to tell a compelling, believable story about immigration and the importance of celebrating diversity."
- Review by William Dawson, West High School, Waterloo, Iowa
- "Two different audience members said on their way out, "Everyone should see this." Another said, "I was so moved.""
- Review by Douglas Bischoff, The Village Theatre Ensemble, Cambridge, N.Y.
- "Faces of Freedom is one of the most outstanding shows we have ever done at Austin. The message is applicable to the kids today, and for the adults it makes you think long and hard about the prejudice in our country. This was the second time we produced the play, and students and teachers are already begging for us to do it a third time!!"
- Review by Susan Thompson, Austin High School, Decatur, Ala.
- "Two quotes from parents! "Faces of Freedom was an inspiring and enlightening show for our middle school students to perform. It enabled the actors and audience to think and talk about their own cultural history and experiences." "This work will shift the way these students think about immigration in the future. Thanks for opening their eyes and their hearts.""
- Review by Kristin Hall, Lincoln Public Schools, Lincoln, Mass.
Hints, Tips, and Tricks
- "This is definitely a play for discussion. If you could have some community leaders there, even better. It is such a relevant piece for today."
- Tip by Felicia Brown, Trenton Central High School, Willingboro, N.J.
- "We kept the staging simple, using black boxes to create tables, chairs, a tree, etc. The students all wore black pants with a variety of colored long-sleeved T-shirts. The colors were to represent the differences of the people represented (there were no black or white shirts). Lighting was crucial to creating certain effects, especially during the "interrogation" moments or to separate a memory from what was the present telling. We also had a percussionist on stage to handle some of the transitions and to add to the element of rhythm mentioned at the beginning and end of the piece."
- Tip by Felicia Brown, Trenton Central High School, Trenton, N.J.