Trinity Episcopal Atchison KS
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Alan Tilson, former parishoner of Trinity, to perform Poor Lear at Benedcitine College


poo lear


Benedictine College is pleased to present Poor Lear, Alan Tilson's one-man, one-hour contemporary adaptation of Shakespeare's King Lear, on Saturday, March 19, with showings at 2:30 and 7:30 p.m. in the Mabee Theatre on the Atchison campus. The show features Lear as a homeless veteran with post-traumatic stress disorder and comes in partnership with Trinity Episcopal Church in Atchison. Suggested donation is $10 - $30. All proceeds will go to benefit Loaves & Fishes Outreach, a multi-denominational ministry which provides a Saturday meal to the needy. The event is open to the public.


Tilson has performed with The Metropolitan Ensemble Theatre, Missouri/Kansas City Repertory Theatre, Heart of America Shakespeare Festival, Theatre for Young America, the New Theatre and The Living Room. Regionally he has performed with the Oregon and Colorado Shakespeare Festivals, the Minnesota Shakespeare Company, and with the Black Hills Playhouse. Poor Lear has been performed in Kansas City, Louisville, New York and Seaside, Fla.


The show presents Lear as a homeless man in a modern setting, with Tilson enacting all the roles in the tragic story of a king who divides his wealth among three daughters and is thrown out of doors to face the elements and come to terms with his own mortality. The decision to do King Lear in a new format developed slowly. Tilson said he had been a fan of King Lear, the story line, and the language. As such, he studied, focused, memorized, and performed many parts of the play over the years.

“I edited the script, cutting the sub-plots almost completely out and keeping the main characters of Lear, the three daughters and the Fool,” Tilson said.


Tilson needed to change the setting to bring the piece a new freshness and relevance and the character and setting came to him on one of his daily walks along Kansas City’s Brush Creek, he said.


Poor Lear demonstrates the plight of homeless people, an ongoing tragedy for many. As such, Tilson’s show comes with information about the homeless and proceeds benefit the needy. Proceeds from this production will go to the Loaves and Fishes Ministry supported by Trinity Episcopal Church.


Credit: Benedictine College website




Allison McFerrin and Courtney Laurie met Presiding Bishop, Michael Curry, at this year's CEEP conference in Denver.



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10:30am  Holy Eucharist Rite II



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Address: 300 South 5th St, Atchison, Kansas 66002
Phone: 913-367-3171