A Native American 9/11 Story

Mangled Beams

Mangled Beams, a play about iron workers who join in the rescue effort at the World Trade Center, is playing through April 29 at the Paula Gural Theater at the A.R.T./New York Theatres.

The play by Dawn Jamieson, a playwright and actor who has appeared in two Broadway productions, is directed by Christen Omantra Callahan, shows us native American iron workers on the morning of September 11, 2001.

“At an Iron Workers Union Hall, four men wait to be assigned work,” according to the show. “Then the unimaginable happens.”

They soon join in the search and rescue effort at Ground Zero in a show that brings them face to face not only with tragedy, but their own past.

“While untangling the beams their Native American fathers and grandfathers once helped to put in place, they reclaim their identity and find personal redemption,” according to the show.

Mangled Beams stars Dylan Carusona (Julius Caesar at The Public Theater), Maeve Crispi, Joe Cross, Denny Desmarais, Erin Kelley (BroadwayWorld Award and Kevin Kline Award nominee for Portrait of My People), Mike Pirozzi (The Boychick Affair), John Scott-Richardson, and Greg Seage.

The production team includes Dedalus Wainwright (set and props), Elijah J. Schreiner (lighting), Z Worthington (sound), Jonathan Hicks (fight director), Patricia Golden (production manager/technical director), Erin Edelstein (production stage manager) and Margaret Gleberman (assistant stage manager).

Playwright Dawn Jamieson’s other work includes Silent Quest, Crooked Paths and Mush Hole, which received public readings and workshops by The Public Theater’s New Work Now! Series, American Indian Community House, Autry’s Native Voices and Lark Play Development Center.

She also has appeared on Broadway in Inherit the Wind with Charles Durning and George C. Scott and in Arthur Miller’s The Price with Eli Wallach.

That’s in addition to plays at many Off-Off Broadway venues as well as appearing in several films – most recently Deadbeat.

She is one of the founding members of a weekly playwriting group called Times Square Playwrights (www.timessquareplaywrights.org). Jamison is of Cayuga-Iroquois heritage.

Christen Omantra Callahan has served as resident director of Enigma and artistic director of Next Generation with the Midtown International Theatre Festival. Recent directing credits include A Visit From Breienberg at Elektra Theatre, Parking Lot 63 at Husdon Guild Theatre, Rumple Who at 13th Street Rep, and Tellin’ Man at Abingdon.

American Indian Artists, which is presenting the show, is a community-based multi-arts organization that works to empower Native Americans and foster intercultural understanding of native American culture.

Mangled Beams runs April 13 – 29; Tuesday – Friday at 7:30 p.m. and Saturday – Sunday at 2 p.m.  and 7:30 p.m.  (No matinee April 14 and no 7:30 p.m. show on April 29). The Jeffrey and Paula Gural Theatre at The A.R.T./New York Theatres is located at 502 West 53rd Street (off 10th Avenue). Tickets are $20 / $15 for seniors and students at mangledbeams.brownpapertickets.com.