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Roan @ The Gates
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Roan @ The Gates

Michelle Tattenbaum, director of Luna Stage’s new show, “Roan @ The Gates.”
Michelle Tattenbaum, director of Luna Stage’s new show, “Roan @ The Gates.”

LUNA STAGE will launch 2019 with the world premiere of Christina Gorman’s cyber-security romance “Roan @ The Gates,” directed by Michelle Tattenbaum. An exploration of internet privacy and the risks of whistleblowing, this suspenseful new play examines the cost of doing the right thing.

Inspired by a shadowy photograph of Edward Snowden’s girlfriend, “Roan @ The Gates” is a fictional investigation into cyber-security. Roan is a data analyst for the NSA, and her wife, Nat, is a lawyer committed to human rights advocacy. When their personal life collides with national security, it launches a beautiful, high-stakes adventure that illuminates the cost of secrecy.

“‘Roan @ The Gates’ springs from my alarm at the rapid pace at which our supposedly private online data is being swept up and catalogued by individuals, companies, and governments,” said Gorman. “Now that virtually everything about ourselves exists in electronic form, is the battle already lost? Is the very notion of privacy gone for good?”

For Tattenbaum, who lives in Maplewood, the play deals with some “deep ethical issues,” namely two main characters who are working in very different ways to make the world a better place.

“They’re engaging in tikkun olam but their priorities are different and they’re making great sacrifices to try and repair the world,” she told NJJN in a phone interview. Tattenbaum is a member of Oheb Shalom Congregation in South Orange.

“Roan @ The Gates” also grapples with ethical responsibility. Luna’s artistic director Ari Laura Kreith chose the play because “It inspires us to look at our own relationships to moral choices, and ask ‘What matters to me enough that I would risk everything to do what is right? What is the moral breaking point for me?’”

Tattenbaum most recently directed “Peter and the Starcatcher” at Cape Fear Regional Theatre. She worked with playwright Itamar Moses (“The Band’s Visit”) on several productions, including the world premiere of “Nobody Loves You,” “Love/Stories,” and “The Four of Us.” She is an associate artist at The Flea Theater in Manhattan and two-time Drama League directing fellow.

“Roan @ The Gates” is in previews Jan. 31; opens Saturday evening,
Feb. 2; and runs through Feb. 24. Tickets cost $16-39 and are available
at LunaStage.org/Roan or by calling 973-395-5551.

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