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March 3, 2009

Media Contact: Beverley Golden
News and Information
The University of Texas at Tyler
903.566.7303 or 903.330.4595 (cell)

UT Tyler to Present Literary Classic 'To Kill a Mockingbird'

To Kill a Mockingbird graphic

Harper Lee’s Pulitzer Prize winning novel will be brought to life in a compelling stage production at The University of Texas at Tyler R. Don Cowan Fine and Performing Arts Center, Susan Thomae-Morphew, Cowan Center director, announced.

Sponsored by Mr. and Mrs. Joseph Z. Ornelas, the play will take the stage at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, March 7. Media sponsors are KETK 56 and GAP Broadcasting.

Tickets are $51, $41, $31, $26 and $11. They can be purchased by calling the UT Tyler Cowan Center box office, 903.566.7424, or online at www.cowancenter.org. Box office hours are 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. Monday through Friday.

“This production is a timeless classic that is treasured by so many. The characters are engaging, and the plot is unforgettable. Audiences will love this,” Thomae-Morphew said.

Set in the 1930s, To Kill a Mockingbird explores civil rights and racism in the segregated South. The gripping story is seen through the eyes of young Scout Finch whose father strives to prove a black man innocent of a rape.

Atticus Finch, an attorney and widowed father of two, opposes local townspeople by defending Tom Robinson who is falsely accused of sexually assaulting a white woman.

Atticus’ lesson to his children is that you can’t know a person until you see things from his point of view. As he puts it, “you never really understand a person until. . .you climb into his skin and walk around in it.”

Young Scout and her brother, Jem, become the victims of prejudice as some of the townspeople strike back at Atticus for standing up for a black man.

Lee’s only novel, published in 1960, is considered one of the most beloved and widely read Pulitzer Prize winners. Horton Foote adapted the novel into an Oscar-winning movie starring Gregory Peck and introducing Robert Duvall.

One of the 15 campuses of the UT System, UT Tyler offers excellence in teaching, research, artistic performance and community service. Nearly 90 undergraduate and graduate degrees are available at UT Tyler, which has an enrollment of more than 6,000 high-ability students at its campuses in Tyler, Longview and Palestine.


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