The Ensemble Theatre of Chattanooga invites the community to attend “The Living Newspaper,” an original piece, beginning this Friday and running until April 7.

The play will be performed March 23-April 7 with Friday shows at 7:30 p.m., Saturday shows at 2 p.m. and Sunday shows at 6:30 p.m.

Performances will take place in the St. Andrews Center, located at 1918 Union Ave.


“In 1935, in the throes of the Great Depression, our nation faced a great challenge. Unemployment was high, spirits were low and the drums of war were banging across the Atlantic Ocean.  People lost houses, lost fortunes, lost lives and lost hope,” Director Jeff Parker said.  “In the midst of this dark time, the federal government and the WPA created a new form of theater that directly spoke to the populace-offering insight, heart, truth and inspiration. This form of the theater was ‘The Living Newspaper.’

“Today, we see a different kind of darkness, a different kind of challenge. Journalism has become a series of attacks and parries, insults and umbrage. It’s a time of bias, a time of shouting, a time of feigned outrage, and it’s unhealthy for all of us,” Parker said. “It’s my hope that this piece of theater addresses today’s issues with the truth, emotional availability and interpersonal connection that the first Living Newspaper aspired to.  Our group of young, talented writer-actors has taken issues near and dear to their hearts and combined scholarly research with artistic truth.  We ourselves have had to develop new ways of communicating, of consensus building and of arguing our points of view while still holding deep respect for those who would disagree with us.”

Tickets are $10 and are available online or by calling 423-987-5141. Tickets may also be purchased at the box office. Doors open 30 minutes before each performance.  Free parking is available behind the St. Andrews Center.

ETC’s production of “The Living Newspaper is directed by Parker. Cast members include Brandi Alexander, Kyle Dagnan, Casey Keelen, Ryan Laskowski, Ellen Poole and Sarah Prince. The contributing writer is Eric “Red” Wyatt.  The stage manager is Evie Durant.