Friday, October 03, 2014

Judy Dworin Performance Project traces paths into and out of prison


“In My Shoes” Opens 25th Anniversary Season
of Judy Dworin Performance Project
Monday, December 8, 7:30 p.m., at Hartford Stage

Wally Lamb Introduces This New Work
About Incarcerated Women

Hartford, Conn. (October 2, 2014)—Judy Dworin Performance Project opens its 25th anniversary season with “In My Shoes,” to be performed on one night only at Hartford Stage (50 Church Street) on Monday, December 8, at 7:30 p.m. (with a snow date of December 15).

Bringing the authentic voices and real-life experiences of women from prison to the stage, this spirited, soul-searching performance piece asks, “What would it be like to be in my shoes?” With startling clarity and compassion, “In My Shoes” examines choices and twists of fate that lead to incarceration. It also tells of perseverance and hope, atonement and redemption found in walks during “time in;” the pathways out of prison; and what it means to be truly free.

“In My Shoes” integrates movement, spoken word and song and is performed with warmth and wit by six women who have reentered Connecticut communities from York Correctional Institution. Two are members of Women on Our Own, a singing-spoken word group that electrified audiences at the 2013 Hartford appearance of Piper Kerman (author of “Orange is the New Black: My Year in a Women’s Prison,” inspiration of the popular Netflix series). All of these women are sojourners towards new, rewarding lives. They are joined by the Ensemble of the Judy Dworin Performance Project, which has won multiple awards in its 25 year history.

Few have had the opportunity to see the work that Judy Dworin Performance Project develops with women inside the York prison compound in Niantic. Governor Dannel P. Malloy did last summer, and said to those serving time, “In your writings, in your speech, in your dance, in your overall performance—you reflect the humanity that is within each of you and within a broader society… Congratulations on your success in this performance.”

A post-performance talk led by Dworin with the performers will invite audience questions and discussion of criminal and social justice, strengths-based intervention programs in penitentiaries, and the role of the arts as agents of change.

Introducing the show is guest Wally Lamb, the best-selling novelist who, like Dworin and her teaching artists, is an instructor at York Correctional Institution. He says Dworin’s work “excites, moves, and educates audiences, and enhances the public’s understanding of the complicated equation of crime and punishment in America.”

Dworin’s dance-theater works are known for compelling social commentary and warm humanism. Cutting across boundaries of gender, geography, and governmental decree, she testifies for those whose voices have been stilled or muted by history and social injustice. While presenting challenging and difficult questions, her dance-theater works convey inspiring stories of perseverance, transcendence, and hope.

General admission to “In My Shoes” is $25, for seniors and “Let’s Go Arts” members $15, and for students with ID $10. A pre-performance reception starting at 5:30 p.m. features a meet-and-greet with author Wally Lamb. Only 100 tickets for this event, including hors d’oeuvres, beer and wine, and reserved seating for the performance, are available for $75 per person. To purchase tickets, visit or call (860) 527-9800.


Susan Hood,, 860-869-2129

Tracey Mozdzierz,, 860-527-9800

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