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Nationally known playwright Lee Blessing workshops new play "Courting Harry" in first public reading with U of M Students

MINNEAPOLIS / ST. PAUL (10/11/12) -Nationally known playwright Lee Blessing's new play Courting Harry will be given its first public reading on Saturday, Oct. 13 at 2 p.m. at the Rarig Center's Kilburn Arena Theatre, 330 21st Ave. S., Minneapolis, on the U of M's West Bank.

Blessing, a Minneapolis native, has been on campus since Wednesday, Oct. 10 working with playwriting students and rehearsing with student performers in the U of M's Theatre Arts and Dance Department.

"We are thrilled to have a playwright of Lee Blessing's stature interacting and challenging our students," said Carl Flink, chair of the Theatre Arts and Dance Department. "We are so excited to join in this Reimagining Community Partnership with alumus Ron Peluso, of St. Paul's History Theatre, who will direct and produce Courting Harry in the spring as part of their season."

Blessing's residency will culminate in a workshop reading of Courting Harry which explores the lifelong friendship Supreme Court Chief Justice Warren Burger and Justice Harry Blackmun, both natives of St. Paul. The friendship was put to the test in one of the most contentious cases of all time: Roe v Wade.

The reading is free and open to the public, however, seating is limited and reservations are required. Please email Jenna at

This reading is performed by theatre students under the guidance of Dominic Taylor, U of M Professor of Playwriting and the direction of History Theater Artistic Director Ron Peluso.

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