May 8, 2007

Sitting in Limbo: One World Theatre Production

Caribbean WritersOne World Theatre Production presents Dawn Penso and Judy Hepburn’s play, Sitting in Limbo, a reflection on local democracy and international power, as well as the roles of women in leadership, on 18-27 May 2007 in Park Slope, Brooklyn.

Sitting in Limbo is based on interviews with Phyllis Coard, the wife of the former Grenadian Finance Minister and Deputy Prime Minister, while she was awaiting sentencing for the murder of the country’s Prime Minister, Maurice Bishop. The play is set in 1983, after the United States’ invasion of Grenada. Despite the Prime Minister’s programs to strengthen and empower the people, the majority of those who benefited were in favor of the invasion. This discrepancy is demonstrated by the riveting dialogue between prisoner and warden.

This absorbing, universal story is timely and is expected to propel its audience to raise questions such as: What is the nature of leadership? Can opinion polls take the place of countrywide voting? Can a government be considered truly progressive or democratic without the expressed approval of the governed?

Written by British playwrights, Dawn Penso and Judy Hepburn, the work had a successful three-year run at London’s Tricycle Theatre, playing to rave reviews. Time Out Magazine of London referred to the protagonist as the “Lady Macbeth” of Grenada.

Penso, who is Jamaican, is the only playwright to have sailed across the Atlantic in a 35-foot boat with three male sailors. This is her first play. Hepburn was born in Kuching, Sarawak, of Jamaican parents and educated in England. She has had a long career as an actress, with tours taking her to Hong Kong and Russia.

Yvonne Campbell (based on Phyllis Coard) is played by Jennifer Copeland, a seasoned actress with credits on the Off-Off Broadway stage. Her understudy is Gloria Jung, who has acted in three New York University student films and other works.

The warden is played by Petol Weekes, who has played the Off and Off-Off Broadway and Summer Stock stage. British actress Lavern Archer, who played Nita in the British production of the play, makes a special appearance. Dawn Johnston-Britton, of United Nations Radio, lends her talents as a radio disc jockey.

The play is directed by Patricka Dallas, a veteran actress/playwright/director, and the producer is Howard Katzman, a documentary filmmaker and video editor.

Sitting in Limbo will run Friday through Sunday, May 18 to 27, at the Port Royal, 837 Union Street, in Park Slope, Brooklyn. Trains: 2&3 to Grand Army Plaza, Q to 7th Avenue or R to Union Street.

Tickets are $20 in advance and $25 at the door. Tickets for groups of 10 are $15 each and students with valid ID pay $10.

Ticket information call (718) 398-4830 or email


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