One of the most frequently performed plays in America today, The Laramie Project, is now on view at the Atlas Performing Arts Center, where the bare stage of the Lang Theatre has been transformed, for the space of Fringe, into the town of Laramie, Wyoming.
Laramie, as most people know, is where one of the most brutal hate crimes in history took place less than 20 years ago. The facts are simple: a 21-year-old gay college student was kidnapped, viciously beaten, abandoned, and ultimately murdered by two of the townspeople. But the town’s reaction was not what reasonable people expected. In fact, the most frightening aspect of this play – both in its original form, in 2000, and in the current revival – is the extent of the town’s denial and its tendency to blame the victim for the crime.