6:40am

Tue August 9, 2011
Kentucky Arts and Culture

UK Play Tells Soldiers' Stories

For many veterans, coming home is itself a challenge. A documentary drama, based on oral history interviews with veterans of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan making that transition, is previewing tonight at the University of Kentucky before heading to Broadway.

The play, now called "civilian," tracks the stories of veterans as they step off the battlefield and into the classroom. It began as a series of taped conversations with soldiers transitioning to life at UK which, playwright Herman Farrell says, gradually took on a life of their own.

"They are the most compelling and intriguing interviews that I've ever listened to in my entire life," Farrell says.

Now, the floors are being swept and a camera crew is getting ready to record tonight's preview performance of civilian, which will officially premier at the New York International Fringe Festival this Friday. The performers say the play steers clear of politics and instead focuses solely on the veterans and their stories. The play starts at 7:30 tonight at UK's Guignol Theatre.