Lexington High School officials canceled 17-year-old theater director Emma Feinberg's production of "Columbinus" --about the 1999 Columbine high school massacre — after a parent reportedly complained of profanity and violence in the script. That sparked cries of censorship from students and parents alike in Lexington.
The production has since found a home off-campus at with the Huntington Theature Company. But the incident has raised big questions: what are the rights of high school kids to this type of artistic expression in schools? How are administrators to know where to draw the line? If a piece of artwork portrays violence without condoning it, does that necessarily make it OK for school?
Those questions will be the subject of a forum this Sunday at the Calderwood. We preview that conversation with three of the panelists.
- Amanda Palmer, actress and musician of the Dresden Dolls, Lexington High School alumnus
- Iain Ryrie, fromer drama director at Brookline High School, former dean of students at Lincoln-Sudbury High School
- Sarah Wunsch, staff attorney, ACLU of Massachusetts
"Columbinus" runs at Huntington Theatre Company’s Calderwood Pavilion in the South End April 15-17. The forum on school censorship will be held at the Calderwood Pavilion April 10 at 2 p.m.
This segment aired on April 7, 2011.