Producer, Dramaturge, & Director.
Ithaca, NY; New York, NY; Long Branch, NJ; Addis Ababa, Ethiopia /// April. 2015 - Present
The Darfur Compromised by Trevor Stankiewicz investigates how American activism was stifled during the 10-year history of the Darfuri genocide, which saw a spike in international awareness in 2004 with the "Save Darfur" campaign. Highlighting the frustration, inaction, and resilience of those involved, The Darfur Compromised sets historical, documentary text alongside fictional interpretations. Imagination meets reality in this genre-bending satire that both informs and entertains.
The play tells of Jackson, a young student at an elite university, and his professor as they travel together through the history of American activism surrounding the Darfur genocide, featuring figures such as George W. Bush, Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir, and Secretary General Kofi Annan. As Jackson learns more and more about the conflict, he is challenged to redefine himself and his beliefs to his girlfriend, his parents, and most importantly, himself.
The play had a successful one-night run at Cherry Lane Theatre this November and will be returning to the stage in January and February 2016. Half of all proceeds from the play go directly to Operation Broken Silence. We have been invited to Ethiopia to perform the play. Help us translate the play, fund a refugee classroom for a year, and travel to Ethiopia to grow as artist-citizens by contributing today!
Interview on WRFI's "Made of Clay Report"
What people are saying...
“We draw from film, books and testimonials from those who were on the ground at the time and interweave them with a fictional narrative,” Gerson said. “That allows us to make commentary about these significant historical figures in a way that a documentary play wouldn’t allow.”
“Darfur has been a place of terrible genocide for well over a decade. What emerges in the collaboration between Stankiewicz and Gerson is a play of immense power that succinctly crystalizes the issues surrounding the events in Darfur.”
— Bruce Levitt, theatre professor at Cornell University
"Stankewicz and Gerson worked closely with Sudanese Scholar Ahmed Adam, as well as Cornell Professor John Hubbel Weiss, to study both the historical conflict and international politics that have surrounded the Darfur region."
“We talk a lot about the United Nations and their responsibility to kind of protect people,” Stankiewicz said. “Because of one reason or another, there were obstacles that allowed this genocide to go on. And if you think about that, the absurdity of it, there’s humor in that, I think. If you talk about it in that light, it kind of resonates more.”
"The play imparts a knowledge that is at once enlightening and perturbing. It discomforts you in the right way. And for political art, that’s the whole point."