Photos courtesy of Kent State University Libraries. Special Collections and Archives.

May 4th Voices

Premieres on Western Reserve PBS (WNEO 45.1/WEAO 49.1) on Friday, May 3, 10 p.m.

Also airs on Fusion (WNEO 45.2/WEAO 49.2) on Saturday, May 4, at 10 p.m. and Monday, May 6, at 8 p.m.

Free sneak preview: Thursday, May 2, at 7 p.m. at The Kent Stage, 175 E. Main St., Kent. Co-sponsors: Western Reserve PBS and Kent State University's College of Arts & Sciences, History Department and Wick Poetry Center, with support from the Ohio Humanities Council.

 

“May 4th Voices” is a play that brings together first-person narratives about the May 4, 1970, shootings at Kent State University. This video production of the play, which was written by David Hassler and directed by Katherine Burke, is based on the Kent State Shootings Oral History Project, which includes more than 115 interviews with National Guardsmen, students, townspeople and politicians. The interviews capture the sense of trauma, confusion and fear felt by people who witnessed or were involved with the May 4 shootings at KSU.

First performed in 2010 in commemoration of the 40th anniversary of the shootings, the “May 4th Voices” play is composed of verbatim excerpts from the Kent State Shootings Oral History Project, except for the voice of the narrator, Maj Ragain, who recites excerpts from his prose poem “May 4, 1970 / A Memory.” Ragain was a graduate student on campus that day and now teaches creative writing at KSU and in the Kent community.

The 90-minute production was funded by a grant from the Ohio Humanities Council and by Kent State University’s College of Arts & Sciences, History Department, Wick Poetry Center and School of Theatre and Dance. Additional support was provided by Western Reserve PBS, The Kent Stage, Kent State University Press and Kent Historical Society.

 

Related Resources:

The Kent State University Press
“May 4th Voices: Kent State, 1970: A Play” book
http://www.kentstateuniversitypress.com/2012/may-4th-voices

A Teacher’s Resource Book for May 4th Voices: Kent State, 1970
http://www.kentstateuniversitypress.com/2012/teachers-resource-book-for-may-4th-voices

“May 4th Voices: Kent State, 1970” DVD
http://www.kentstateuniversitypress.com/2012/may-4th-voices-dvd

 

Western Reserve Public Media
Facebook
https://www.facebook.com/WesternReservePublicMedia

YouTube
http://www.youtube.com/user/westernreservepbs

Streaming video
http://video.westernreservepublicmedia.org

 

The May 4th Visitors Center
Commemoration Schedule of Events 2013
http://www.kent.edu/about/history/May4/thevisitorscenter/commemoration-schedule.cfm

 

The Kent Stage
http://www.thekentstage.com

 

Kent State University
College of Arts & Sciences
http://www.kent.edu/cas

Department of History
http://www.kent.edu/cas/history

Wick Poetry Center
http://www.kent.edu/about/centersinstitutes/wickpoetrycenter.cfm

 

 

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