Screen readers: Two navigational links to follow.Skip to site navigation.Skip to page content.
The University of Iowa News Services
The University of Iowa News Services Home News Releases UI in the News Subscribe to UI News Contact Us

University of Iowa News Release


March 12, 2007

'Hope Falls' Was Inspired By U.S. Overthrow Of Hawaiian Monarchy

The University Theatres Gallery series will present "Hope Falls," a new play by Iowa Playwrights Workshop student Melissa Leilani Larsen, at 8 p.m. Thursday through Saturday, March 22-24, and at 2 p.m. Sunday, March 25, in Theatre B of the University of Iowa Theatre Building.

"Hope Falls" is a fantasy set in the fictional Gloria, a small country that suffers an economic and political takeover at the hands of a major world power. Two sisters, Margot and Lauren, find themselves on opposite sides of the conflict: Margot feels a strong duty to the family company, the success of which hinges on the takeover, while Lauren becomes involved in underground partisan activity to restore the former government.

"Some people will quickly make assumptions about the political intentions of this play, labeling it as an allegory for the present situation in Iraq," Larson says.  "Initially, though, the germ behind 'Hope Falls' grew out of a U.S. occupation that people hardly consider anymore -- the overthrow of the Hawaiian monarchy. This play is an experiment, an attempt to boil down significant world issues to more intimate relationships -- to bring things back home, to the family."

Director/scenic designer Heather Bodie adds, "With our own country at war, I think it's incredibly relevant to question the amount of power one country may have over another and how they choose to use it. This play really explores the destruction of a country as well as a family."

Admission will be $6 ($4 for students and senior citizens) at the door. Tickets will be on one hour prior to curtain.

The Department of Theatre Arts is a unit of 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, go to, click the link "Join or leave the list (or change settings)" and follow the instructions.

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; cell: 310-430-1013;