RUST at Actors’ Theatre in The GR Press

Hot Off the Presses – Sue Merrell of The Grand Rapids Press interviews the playwright and director of RUST:

‘Rust’ at Actors’ Theatre focuses on Wyoming GM plant closing

Published: Sunday, September 25, 2011, 11:34 AM
By Sue Merrell | The Grand Rapids Press

Photo Credit: T.J. Hamilton | The Grand Rapids Press Cast in “Rust”: From left, Austin Bunn, Bernice Houseward, Wayne Swezey, Kieren Smith, Ella Swift, Jared Wekenman, Paul Arnold, Rena Dam and Chris Nye.

Austin Bunn didn’t know much about the auto industry, but as a magazine journalist in the New York City area, he had been part of a declining business. He knows how it feels when your training is outmoded, when they don’t need what you do anymore, and it’s time to train for another career.

That career change brought him to Grand Rapids in 2008 to teach creative writing at Grand Valley State University.

“I was struck by the number of empty buildings in Grand Rapids and thought it might be fun to do a piece of theater in a closed factory,” Bunn said. “I love the mixture of theater and journalism. Theater sometimes feels isolated from relevancy. I love it when creativity meets real life.”

In October, 2008, General Motors announced it was closing its stamping plant on 36th Street in Wyoming. The 75-year-old plant was to be torn down and 1,500 people would lose their jobs. Bunn decided to tell their story. “Rust,” a play based on his interviews with dozens of employees, opens Thursday at Actors’ Theatre.  (…)

Read the rest of the article, on  Rust opens this Thursday – go to the Actors’ Theatre website for more information and to order tickets.

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