What If Chernobyl Happened in America? New Documentary-Theater Piece Investigates



This announcement comes courtesy of actor-writer-director Ronald Rand:

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Shantigar Foundation
and Western Massachusetts Chapter of Coalition for a Nuclear-Free Future

Meltdown: Voices From Chernobyl
The Oral History of a Nuclear Disaster

A dramatic adaptation by Spencer Smith of the book by Svetlana Alexeivich
Readings directed by Ronald Rand

Meltdown is a dramatic presentation that asks the question, “What if it happened here?” The voices in the play are those of Chernobyl survivors but the readers are local, from Western Massachusetts. So are the dangers of a meltdown… Meltdown: Voices From Chernobyl doesn’t pose an abstract question but a dramatic one of vital interest…a direct warning from the inhabitants of Chernobyl to whom the unthinkable did happen.

Meltdown will be given five readings across Massachusetts during July and August. Participants include Betsy Corner, Frances Crowe, Court Dorsey, Marcia Gagliardi, Jeanine Haas, Ruth Hooke, Peter Ludwig, Sister Jane Morrissey, Mary Ann Palmieri, Les Patlove, Ronald Rand, Chris Rohmann, Pat Roix and Jean-Claude van Itallie. Speakers include Dr. Ira Helfand of Physicians for Social Responsibility and Deb Katz of Citizens Awareness Network

Scheduled performances:
July 25, 7:30pm, Greenfield Community College, One College Drive, Greenfield
July 26, 7:30pm, Mocha Maya Coffee House, 47 Bridge St., Shelburne Falls
July 27, 7pm, 1794 Meeting House, New Salem
August 25, 7pm, The Edwards Church, 299 Main St., Northampton
August 26, 7pm, Springfield

Svetlana Alexievich is an Belarusian investigative journalist and prose writer and correspondent for the literary magazine Neman in Minsk. Her most notable works are first-hand accounts from the war in Afghanistan, The Boys in Zinc and Voices of Chernobyl. Her books include The Unwomanly Face of the War and The Last Witnesses. Alexievich has received the Kurt Tucholsky Prize, the Andrei Sinyavsky Prize, the Leipzig Prize and the Herder Prize. Voices from Chernobyl won the 2005 National Book Critics Circle Award.

Shantigar, located on a beautiful old farm in Western Massachusetts, is a not-for-profit educational foundation dedicated to the practice and exciting cross-pollination of theater, meditation and healing. Shantigar offers workshops and hosts theater artists, meditation masters and healers.

Cosponsoring organizations: Western Massachusetts Chapter of Coalition for a Nuclear-Free Future, W. Ma. AFSC; Arise; Traprock Center; Peace Pagoda, Physicians for Social Responsibility; The Enviro Show; Citizens Awareness Network, First Churches Justice and Peace Committee. For info., contact Hattie Nestel: hattieshalom@verizon.net.