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    After the Storm

    Read the Offoffoff review

    AFTER FIGHTING THE WAR, SHE HAD TO FIGHT THE ARMY Heather Grayson returns one year later with the one-woman military drama the Washington Post called the "biggest and most gratifying art-related surprise" in New York in the aftermath of September 11th. The largest ammunition accident since Vietnam sparks this unusual coming-of-age saga: the true story of a young woman caught between the bureaucratic machine that aims to destroy her and the desperate need to reclaim her sense of self. Heather Grayson was a young, naive college student when the United States sent her to fight in the Gulf War. She had unusual smarts, a steel will and an all-American ambition to succeed. After the Storm is one woman's story of high hopes, shocking betrayal, and a struggle for identity which sheds light on America's recent, undiscussed history. Heather Grayson allows us to hear a woman soldier's point of view, courageously sharing her military coming of age experience, her disillusionment with the system and her private battles with our nation's largest military service. When AFTER THE STORM opened on Saturday, September 7, 2001, audience members commented that it was eye-opening, emotionally wrenching, historically shocking. They were grateful to be awakened from their amnesia about a moment in U.S. history rarely discussed. When AFTER THE STORM re-opened September 27th within a militarized zone just ten blocks north of Americas worst ever attack site, audiences were overwhelmed by the poignant storytelling that put them face to face with the personal realities of war, and a tragic situation that seemed doomed to repeat itself. It was a grave and eerie coincidence. Only one week after the September 11th attacks on the World Trade Center, Gulf War Army veteran Heather Grayson found herself shoulder to shoulder once again with U.S. soldiers. This time, the soldiers were protecting the militarized zone south of Canal Street in Lower Manhattan. This time, Grayson was a civilian. She completed her mission. Braving strict blockades in a daily struggle to gain access to her downtown theater, Grayson continued to publicly share a different sort of military story — that of Americas LAST war, in the Persian Gulf. In the weeks following September 11th, the Washington Posts Terry Teachout wrote about his cultural experiences in the wake of the attacks: "The biggest and most gratifying art-related surprise of the past few weeks came when I ventured downtown to the tiny Access Theater to see Heather Grayson in AFTER THE STORM Boldly performed on a spare but impeccably right set, it is packed with the kind of bull's-eye detail that makes you sit up in your seat and shiver Unlike so many of today's single-character plays, this one isa sharply observed slice of real life transformed into timely and gripping theater by a smart and funny young lady, and it is good enough to bear comparison to David O. Russell's [film] THREE KINGS, until now the only memorable work of art to emerge from Operation Desert Storm. Part of what makes AFTER THE STORM so well suited to the present moment is that it is both serious and funny, a blend that hits the spot at times like these."

    Dates:  Sept. 9, 2002 - Sept. 21, 2002
    Schedule:  Sept. 9, 10 and 21 at 7 p.m.
    Venue:  West End Theater, 263 W. 86th St.
    Official site:
    Tickets/info:  (212) 696-8931

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