Theater of the First Amendment Play Looks at PTSD

Posted: November 4, 2008 at 1:00 am, Last Updated: November 30, -0001 at 12:00 am

Theater of the First Amendment, Mason’s professional theater company, will present Jack Gilhooley’s “The Warrior,” at TheaterSpace on the Fairfax Campus on Saturday, Nov. 8, at 8 p.m.

The one-night-only performance will be followed by a panel discussion on the effects of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

Directed by Kevin Murray, “The Warrior” tells the story of Iraq War veteran Tammy (played by Marietta Elaine Hedges). After her second tour of duty serving her country in Iraq, Tammy returns with a severe case of PTSD, a broken marriage and the possibility of losing her daughter in a custody battle.

Her filmmaker friend Giselle (played by Mary Lechter) thinks that Tammy deserves a forum, and makes her the subject of a new documentary. “The Warrior” is a frank look at PTSD, the war they don’t show on television and one veteran’s options when little attention is paid to the battle scars that are invisible.

“The Warrior” was first presented in workshop at Culture Project in New York City as part of its anti-war Impact Festival in September 2006. It was chosen from 500 entries and later went to Florida’s BacklotArts (funded by a Puffin Foundation grant) and Theater of the First Amendment as a winner in its First Light Festival. The play was also performed as part of the Alternative Roots Festival in Baltimore in 2007.

Gilhooley’s plays have been developed at the Eugene O’Neill Theater Center, Aspen Playwrights Festival, Sundance Playwrights Lab, Avignon Festival, Sequoyah New Play Retreat and North Carolina Playwrights Festival. He has twice been commissioned by the Actors Theatre of Louisville and the Corporation for Public Broadcasting and has received numerous grants.

His latest play, “Exisles,” a Joycean dark comedy, opened in January in County Limerick, Ireland. He has had numerous works published, and Broadway Play Publishing Inc. recently released a collection of his work titled “Plays by Jack Gilhooley.”

The post-performance panel discussion will be moderated by writer and activist David Swanson, who will be joined by Marietta Hedges, Carlos Sluzki from Mason’s Institute for Conflict Analysis and Resolution and two veterans of the Iraq War, Amy Baxter and Adam Charles Kokesh.

This play contains adult language.

Tickets are $15. Charge by phone at 888-945-2468 or visit

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