Mildred's Umbrella to Raise Awareness of Human Trafficking with THE JOHNS

Mildred's Umbrella to Raise Awareness of Human Trafficking with THE JOHNS

Mildred's Umbrella continues its 2016-2017 season with the regional premiere of THE JOHNS by Mary Bonnett, producing artistic director for Chicago's Her Story Theater.

Produced in collaboration with the National Council of Jewish Women, Greater Houston Section, and United Against Human Trafficking, the play is an eye-opening look at human trafficking and its continuing prevalence in today's society.

Sex trafficking seems like someone else's problem, until an upper middle-class family in a prominent Houston area suburb finds itself ensnared. This unflinching drama explores our values raising boys to men, instant sexual gratification and its impact on women, the family and those purchased.

Originally produced in 2014 for Her Story Theater, Bonnett's play was based on hundreds of interviews with people involved in sex trafficking in the Chicagoland area. For the Mildred's Umbrella production, the playwright has updated the script to set the action in The Woodlands, Texas.

"I think one of the most powerful elements of the show is the fact that even the most family friendly communities are susceptible to human trafficking," said Artistic Director Jennifer Decker, who is directing the show. "An even more sobering statistic is a recent study that shows 20 percent of all U.S. human trafficking market takes place in Texas, which is why I'm pleased Ms. Bonnett is setting our production in Houston. We hope to shed light on an issue that many Houstonians are not even aware is a problem."

Co-producing the show is the National Council of Jewish Women, Greater Houston Section which seeks to protect the rights and well-being of women, children and families including harassment, violence and abuse. "Following in the footsteps of the Chicago North Shore's NCJW, we felt that Mary Bonnett's work was extremely relevant for Houston audiences and it works well with the city's push on human trafficking awareness," stated Bobbi Cohen, NCJW Texas State Policy Advocacy Co-chair.

Also as a co-producer, United Against Human Trafficking, is working with 35 organizations under its Houston Rescue & Restore Coalition on direct outreach, education and advocacy. "With these 12 public performances, we want to raise awareness that human trafficking is violation of basic human rights and robs victims of their freedom," stated Timeka Walker, Executive Director.

THE JOHNS opens January 19 and continues through February 4 at Spring Street Studios, 1824 Spring. For more information, please call 832-463-0409 or visit $15 to $25 (Pay what you can on January 30).

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