US: North Carolina school cancels play over gay romance
A high school in North Carolina has banned an upcoming play – because it contained a scene involving a same-sex couple.
Maiden High School in Maiden, North Carolina, had been due to put on a production of ‘Almost, Maine’, a romantic comedy by John Cariani.
However, the play – which was previously named the most produced play in North American high schools – was deemed inappropriate because it features a gay couple in one scene.
The rights to the play had already been bought by the time it was cancelled, but principal Rob Bliss said the play involved “sexually-explicit overtones and multiple sexual innuendos that are not aligned with our mission and educational objectives”.
He added: “I have an obligation to ensure that all material, including drama performances is appropriate and educationally sound for students of all ages.”
The playwright John Cariani told WSOC: “I believe the play is about love, not sexual love. The scene with the two young men has no reference to sex at all.
“I just think there is a solution other than cancelling the production. I’ve reached out to the teacher who applied for rights to the play, but I haven’t heard back.
“I don’t think the students should have to suffer. They had already purchased the play and started rehearsing for it.”