mu a midsummer nights dreamWest Long Branch, N.J. - Director Jilann Spitzmiller brings her award-winning documentary “Still Dreaming” to Monmouth University’s Pollak Theatre on Thursday, March 5 at 7:30 p.m. Co-directed by Spitzmiller and Hank Rogerson, the film follows a group of entertainment retirees as they cast, rehearse and perform a production of Shakespeare's “A Midsummer Night's Dream.” The film is free and open to the public. There will be a Q&A with Spitzmiller immediately following the screening.

Set at the Lillian Booth Actors Home in Englewood, New Jersey, “Still Dreaming,” follows a group of elders during six weeks of rehearsal as they prepare to mount a reading of “A Midsummer Night's Dream.”As the rehearsal process unfolds, the actors find themselves experiencing both the pain and exhilaration of re-immersion in their life’s work amidst the vagaries of old age. At the same time, the troupe’s young co-directors, Ben Steinfeld and Noah Brody of NYC’s celebrated Fiasco Theater, struggle to maintain forward momentum with this over-80 acting ensemble. Alzheimer’s, Dementia, and even minor issues such as sight and hearing loss create constant crises and obstacles for all involved. As the troupe pushes forward, the play’s themes of perception, reality vs. dreaming, and memory become relevant in sharp relief. Ultimately the performance of the play turns out to be surprising, mysterious and resonant, and a vital reminder of the value of engaging in our dreams no matter the circumstance.

Rogerson and Spitzmiller are a husband and wife team that has collaborated on projects for 15 years, including the documentaries “Shakespeare Behind Bars,” which won eleven awards on the festival circuit and“Homeland” an award-winning documentary about the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation in South Dakota which aired on PBS in 2000.

The event is sponsored by Monmouth University’s Department of Communication and the Center for the Arts, and part of the “On Screen: In Person” film series, which brings six films and filmmakers to Monmouth University as part of a tour of the Eastern seaboard. On Screen: In Person is made possible by Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation through the generous support of the National Endowment for the Arts’ Regional Touring Program.

Event:             Still Dreaming with post-screening Q&A with the filmmaker Jilann Spitzmiller

Date:               Thursday, March 5, 2015       

Time:               7:30 p.m.

Where:             Pollak Theatre, Monmouth University, 400 Cedar Ave, West Long Branch, NJ

Sponsored by:   Monmouth University’s Center for the Arts

Cost:                  Free and open to the public

Box Office:    www.monmouth.edu/arts or call 732-263-6889

Contact:          Andrew Demirjian, Specialist Professor, Department of Communication at 732-263-5751