18th February 2003




A Lincoln theatre company will be taking part in a global theatrical event at the University of Lincoln next month.


Converse Theatre will be joining 527 other groups in 36 countries to stage a reading of Aristophanes’ anti-war comedy ‘Lysistrata’ on Monday 3rd March to provoke debate on a possible conflict with Iraq.


The Lysistrata Project was born in the United States in January is encouraging groups around the world to arrange rehearsed readings of Lysistrata, which tells the story of a group of women from opposing states who unite to end the Peloponnesian War.


After matronly stormtroopers take over the building where public funds are kept, the women rise to end the war by withholding sex from their mates until, desperate for intimacy, the men finally agree to lay down their swords.


The Lincoln reading will take place in the Jackson Lecture Theatre at the university’s main Brayford Pool campus from 7.30pm on 3rd March - admission is free of charge to members of the public.


“We’re very pleased to be hosting this drama event which will show the sort of projects we’d like to be involved with in the future,” said Professor Michael Earley, who is leading the university’s new Drama degree from September 2003.


John Bowtell, artistic director of Converse Theatre, added: “The Lysistrata Project is the first ever world wide theatrical event for peace and is a uniquely positive and exciting way of generating local debate about an issue that affects us all.


“The play is funny and sexy and is female, life-affirming, rather than male, death-dealing.”


The event is free but donations are welcome - charities benefiting include the Royal British Legion and Amnesty International.


For more information contact Converse Theatre on Lincoln 521065 or email mail@converse.info or visit www.lysistrataproject.com


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For more information contact: Jez Ashberry, Press and Media Relations Manager

University of Lincoln (tel: 01522 886042)         email: jashberry@lincoln.ac.uk