by Martin Sherman
June 1-9
Directed by Angie Toomsen

Like The Crucible, Bent is the story of a man faced with the decision to live in his truth, even if it means sacrificing his own life. Max is a gay man in Nazi Germany who is sent to a concentration camp, where he finds a companion and lover, Horst. Horst demonstrates the dignity of a man who embraces who he is, even at the risk of his life. Through his example, Max must the strength to embrace his identity no matter the consequences.

Martin Sherman’s worldwide hit play Bent took London by storm in 1979 when it was first performed by the Royal Court Theatre, with Ian McKellen as Max (a character written with the actor in mind). The play itself caused an uproar. “It educated the world,” Sherman explains. “People knew about how the Third Reich treated Jews and, to some extent, gypsies and political prisoners. But very little had come out about their treatment of homosexuals.” Gays were arrested and interned at work camps prior to the genocide of Jews, gypsies, and handicapped, and continued to be imprisoned even after the fall of the Third Reich and liberation of the camps.

Bent highlights the reason why – a largely ignored German law, Paragraph 175, making homosexuality a criminal offense, which Hitler reactivated and strengthened during his rise to power. Source: Amazon

Dreamwell chose Bent for its “Here I Stand” season because, like The Crucible, Bent is the story of a human being confronted with the decision to live in his truth, even if it means making the ultimate sacrifice.

Look for a talkback and potential educational opportunities around this production in conjunction with Gay Pride in May/June 2012!


Horst – Matthew James
Max – K. Michael Moore
Rudy – Bryant Duffy
Greta/Captain – Kehry Anson Lane
Uncle Freddie – Kevin Burford
Wolf/Guards – TBD

Production Team

Director – Angie Toomsen

Production Coordinator – Sarah Smith

Historian/Anthropologist – K. Lindsay Eaves

Production Designer – TBD