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Artwork and poem by Susan Scharpf, Design Consultant
Our second Retreat and Festival play by a Native Alaskan is Cikiuteklluku: Giving Something Away. Written by Holly Christine Stanton, Cikiuteklluku is about a young Yup’ik girl from rural Alaska who faces heartache when a non-Native couple adopts her baby. Holly's creative team includes director Ed Bourgeois and dramaturg Shelley Orr.

Holly Stanton, Playwright
Holly Stanton (Yupik Athabascan) is from Bethel, Alaska where she has been a Registered Nurse since 2004. After some reflection and consideration for her family, she made a career move to work as a Nurse II for the Bethel Public Health Center and is excited to be branching out into a new facet of nursing. Although this is her first foray into playwriting, she has always had an artistic flair and contributes occasionally to the local paper in Bethel. She is married to Michael Stanton and together they have four children, three stepchildren, and one grandchild. She considers her family her greatest accomplishment in life and is proud that all her children appear to be artistically inclined to both drawing and writing.

Ed Bourgeois, Director
Ed Bourgeois (Mohawk) applies his background as a professional actor, director, and producer to the development of Native Theater at the Alaska Native Heritage Center (ANHC). As General Director of Anchorage Opera (1996-2007) he was responsible for all operational and artistic functions of a $1M non-profit arts organization, directed mainstage productions and developed the Studio Theatre young artist program. As ANHC’s Director of Public Programs he has co-written and/or directed productions of Panik’s Revenge, Growing Up Native in Alaska, Raven’s Radio Hour, The Three Enemies, and Echoes, which was performed at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of the American Indian. His production of Jack Dalton’s Assimilation was lauded by the Anchorage Daily News as “Best Play of 2010”. He is project director of the Alaska Native Playwrights Project, which in its first year saw the creation of nine new plays by indigenous writers.

Shelley Orr, Dramaturg
Shelley Orr teaches theatre history and dramaturgy in the graduate and undergraduate programs in the School of Theatre, Television, and Film at San Diego State University. Her publications have appeared in Theatre Journal, TheatreForum, and Theatre Topics. She co-edited a collection of essays entitled Performance and the City (Palgrave 2009). Her professional theatre credits include serving as a dramaturg for New York’s Classic Stage Company, La Jolla Playhouse, and the PlayLabs New Play Festival at The Playwrights' Center in Minneapolis. Most recently, she dramaturged the new play A Weekend With Pablo Picasso at the San Diego Repertory and 9 Parts of Desire at Mo`olelo Theatre. She holds an MFA in Dramaturgy from University of California, San Diego, and a PhD in Theatre Studies from the UCI/UCSD joint doctoral program. She is past president of the international professional association Literary Managers and Dramaturgs of the Americas (LMDA).

Cikiuteklluku: Giving Something Away will be presented at La Jolla Playhouse on Thursday, June 2 and at the Autry National Center on Thursday, June 16 at 7:30p. For tickets, please click here.

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