Domestic violence topic of interactive play Thursday in Port Townsend
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‘Eye Witness: Allies to Domestic Violence,’ the interactive play coming to Port Townsend’s Community Center on Thursday, features Johnny Colden, Sarah Stockholm, Leif Hansen and Ashnie Butler, from left. — Mandala Center for Change

By Diane Urbani de la Paz
Peninsula Daily News

PORT TOWNSEND — The Poetic Justice Theatre Ensemble, together with Dove House Advocacy Services, will stage “Eye Witness: Allies to Domestic Violence,” an interactive play and community dialogue, in a single performance Thursday night.

Admission is free to the 7 p.m. event at the Port Townsend Community Center, uptown at 620 Tyler St., while any donations will benefit Dove House, Jefferson County’s resource center for people affected by crime and abuse.

“Eye Witness” explores all roles in domestic violence situations, be they blatant or subtle, said Marc Weinblatt, founder of Poetic Justice.

The play focuses especially on male bystander intervention, so men are encouraged to attend.

“Men are often seen as the problem when it comes to domestic violence,” Weinblatt said.

It’s not comfortable or easy, he added, “but perhaps we can shift this, so we’re also part of the solution.”

At Thursday’s performance, audience members can choose to watch and listen — or participate in the dialogue.

The Poetic Justice ensemble, part of Port Townsend’s Mandala Center for Change, presents “Eye Witness” as a kind of rehearsal for the future, Weinblatt said.

In its plays, “‘spect-actors’ take action toward creating the kind of world they want,” he added.

Theater-goers are invited to share personal stories, struggles and experiences, which will be brought to life by the actors.

And since this can get into adult subject matter, Weinblatt noted that it could be unsettling to very young children.

Now in its 12th season, Port Townsend’s Poetic Justice Theatre Ensemble is a troupe of local actor-activists, ranging in age from 14 to 67, who use interactive performance as a tool for awareness and social change, and to promote a more just and joyous world for all people.

For information about Poetic Justice, see www.MandalaforChange.com or phone 360-344-3435, and to learn more about Dove House, visit www.dovehousejc.org or phone 306-385-5291.

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Features Editor Diane Urbani de la Paz can be reached at 360-452-2345, ext. 5062, or at diane.urbani@peninsuladailynews.com.

Last modified: June 01. 2014 6:47PM
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