The University of Iowa
The University of Iowa News Services Home News Releases UI in the News Subscribe to UI News Contact Us

University of Iowa News Release

Oct. 13, 2003

University Theatres Gallery Presents 'Green Girl' Oct. 23-26

The University Theatres Gallery series will present "Green Girl," a new play by Iowa Playwrights Workshop student Sarah Hammond, at 8 p.m. Thursday through Saturday, Oct. 23-25, and at 3 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 26 in Theatre B of the University of Iowa Theatre Building.

"'Green Girl' is a dirt-poor superhero story about all the muddy and unromantic moments that happen before a hero can become heroic," Hammond says. "Though it's full of ashes and funerals and war, at heart this play is about love. I believe that humor and grief work most truthfully in tandem. Glorious things can happen in horrific circumstances."

Her protagonist is Elizabeth Slaughter, whose hands can heal, but who hesitates to use this power for fear of doing more harm than good. She keeps to herself, collecting ashes and plants at the Congaree Swamp, where ghosts roam the cypresses. Against the backdrop of American air strikes on Afghanistan, Slaughter sees cancer blooming in a new friend's body, and she must learn how to master her newfound power to heal him.

Director Nancy Mayfield comments, "It is a great joy to work with Sarah Hammond on this exciting premiere. Her honest and intense dialogue makes the characters real and familiar even in a magical landscape. In an abstract landscape of twisted trees and forgotten deserts, an old swamp man will help us 'look for our faces' by showing us proof that magic exists -- even in us."

Other artistic contributors are set designer Stephen Ptachek, lighting designer Sean Doyle and sound designer Chris Leyva.

An earlier script of "Green Girl," was read at the Iowa New Play Festival last spring, under the title, "Ghost-Glowing Swamp." Hammond's first full-length play, "Kudzu," was produced professionally last summer in Columbia, S.C., at the Trustus Theatre, where it was the winner of the Trustus Playwrights Festival award for best play. She was one of five U.S. representatives at the 2001 Interplay International Festival of Young Playwrights in Australia.

University Theatres Gallery is a series of student productions in the Department of Theatre Arts, which is a unit in the Division of Performing Arts in the UI College of Liberal Arts and Sciences.

For UI arts information and calendar updates, visit To receive UI arts news by e-mail,

STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa Arts Center Relations, 300 Plaza Centre One, Suite 351, Iowa City, IA 52242-2500.

MEDIA CONTACT: Winston Barclay, 319-384-0073,