Monday, August 17, 2015

Salmon Is Everything Returns: Book of the Year Onstage

“Tribes Blast Federal Klamath River Plan” said the newspaper headline early this August, as local tribal members fear that today’s conditions are similar to those that resulted in a massive salmon die-off in 2002.

 Earlier this summer, Humboldt’s U.S. Representative Jared Huffman petitioned the Secretary of the Interior to have more water released from the Trinity River to prevent another such fish kill on the Lower Klamath River, which could happen at any time now—in 2015.

 The 2002 die-off is a central event in Salmon Is Everything, the play created and produced at HSU in 2006, to deal with many issues—scientific, political, spiritual and human—that arise in connection with the past and future of salmon and people on the Lower Klamath River.  The related book with the same title is the HSU Book of the Year for 2015-16.

 Excerpts from Salmon Is Everything will be performed as a staged reading on Sunday August 30 at 2 p.m. in the Van Duzer Theatre. The program also includes a talk by the book’s author Theresa May. There is no charge for admission.

Darcie Black and Mary Campbell in
the 2006 HSU production
An ad hoc group of concerned Native and non-Native community and HSU community members worked for two years to develop this play. Some original cast members will participate in the reading.

Several public readings elicited suggestions and stories from audience members that became part of the script. The play was first produced in 2006 at HSU, and subsequently performed elsewhere in the region. A new production was mounted in Oregon in 2011.

 The script, along with essays about the background and process of creating it, has since been published in book form. This book, also called Salmon Is Everything, is the 2015-16 Book of the Year at HSU.

 The reading on August 30 is directed by HSU student Anthony DePage. It is supported by a coalition of organizations and individuals, including the STEM program of the HSU College of Natural Resources and Sciences, a Diversity and Inclusion grant, the Book of the Year Committee, HSU Library and members of the HSU Theatre program.

Salmon photo above:By Josh Larios from Seattle, US (DSC02252.JPG) [CC BY-SA 2.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

Media: Mad River Union, Times-Standard URGE.

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