An original play that opens at Chapman University tonight and continues through Saturday has professional actors telling the stories of actual homicide victims and their families.
Call This Number is based on interviews with more than 50 family members of murder victims compiled by Lemuel "Ed" Day, the play's co-author and an associate professor at the private university in Orange.
"Those left behind by homicide not only grieve but search for justice in a system that is designed to punish the guilty, not aid the victims—a system that often treats these secondary victims as afterthoughts," Day, the chairman of Chapman's Sociology Department, says in the university's play announcement.
"In this performance, their stories and their interactions with the criminal justice system are shared with the hope that others may learn how to help these families cope with their loss."
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Chapman student Noreen Raja and Professor Michelle Miller-Day, who hail from the Communications Department, are other authors of the play making its world premiere at 8 tonight in Memorial Hall.
Performances, which are all free, continue there at 8 p.m. through Saturday, when there will also be a 2 p.m. matinee. Each performance ends with a question and answer period with the authors, actors and director Jed Alexander.
Vonzell Scott designed the sets with materials donated by the South Coast Repertory Theatre. For more information on the play, visit http://www.chapman.edu/callthisnumber or https://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/Call-this-Number-A-Play-about-Social-Justice/176461352548416.