The often-adapted piece depicts the tension of jury deliberations in a homicide trial in which a lone dissenting juror sows a seed of reasonable doubt among his peers, creating the unique tension when people try to find the same “truth”. The best known version, Sidney Lumet’s 1957 best picture nominated 12 Angry Men, starred Henry Fonda as the stalwart Juror #8.
Director Michael Uchrin first decided to put on this particular piece following a home viewing of the film. “There’s a great deal of depth to the characters – there’s a great deal of human interaction, a groupthink sort of element; how people formulate their opinions; how some people are leaders and some naturally follow; and how we sometimes create narratives out of our own personal baggage. I thought ‘Wow this is something that makes for good human drama.’”
The alterations made to the original play were minimal. Says Uchrin, “I updated a few references, [but] there have been versions done with both women and men before, so that part wasn’t too hard.” The addition of women allows for a broader net to be cast in search of actors in Busan’s small but dedicated theater community, while also providing a chance to create a more dynamic group of characters. Sangmin Choi, the only Korean cast member, plays the role of Juror #11, an immigrant. She says, “This person has moved to the U.S. because she didn’t like what was happening in her own country where people are not free to have their own opinions, and she takes this responsibility very seriously.”
The play examines the issue of injustice, as well as what can be considered a “reasonable doubt.” This is most clearly displayed by Juror #8, the lone vote of ‘not guilty’, played by Jeffrey Schoenfeld. The character dissents because he wants to deliberate, rather than simply condemning a man to death. Schoenfeld says, “Like with most good theater, this will hopefully make people consider questions that they normally wouldn’t.”
The various social issues combine with the personalities of the jurors to create a truly gripping drama. Each of us can see something of ourselves in the jury room, identifying with their biases and demeanors. We, personally, end up as jurors, considering the evidence, seeing our own version of the truth, and silently casting our votes.
12 Angry Jurors runs January 10th and 11th in Jung-ang Dong. Tickets are 5,000W.
For further information about the show, ticket reservations, and theatre, please check out the event page on Facebook.
Photos by Michael Uchrin and Indy Randhawa
– 자유바다소극장 theatre.
It is located at the Jungang metro stop #112 on the Orange Line #1. The theater entrance is just outside Exit #2. Just follow the signs. Enter the theater via the door to its left and go to the 3rd floor.
– 5,000 won
Email firstname.lastname@example.org with your name, number of people in your party, and date and time you would like to go to reserve tickets. Pay at the door.
-Foreman: Justin Eckl
-Juror 2: Kelly Bryan
-Juror 3: Indy Randhawa
-Juror 4: Nicole O’Block
-Juror 5: Carrie Heeter
-Juror 6: Nicole Rafael
-Juror 7: Michael Wheeler
-Juror 8: Jeffrey Schoenfeld
-Juror 9: Christopher Nicoloff
-Juror 10: Sarah Berryman
-Juror 11: Sangmin Choe
-Juror 12: Jennifer Howell
-Guard: TJ Kernan
– Directed by Michael Uchrin
– Stage Managed by Jenna Apollonia
-Assistant Stage Manager: Jacob Elgin
-Art Department: Kelly Bryan
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