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'Punk Rock' promo photo

The cast of 'Punk Rock' is shown in a promotional photo provided by SIU's marketing department. 

CARBONDALE — Jump back into all the emotions of high school with a group of outspoken 17-year-olds as they navigate tough issues in SIU’s new play, “Punk Rock.”

High school can be rough on anybody, especially when faced with pressures of bullying, violence and uncertainty. The play, which runs Nov. 9 to 11 in the Christian H. Moe Laboratory Theater at Southern Illinois University Carbondale, addresses all of these topics and more, while pulling audiences in with all of the passion and angst associated with the teenage years.

From bullying and violence to self-harm, body issues and the pressures of school and the future, “Punk Rock” leaves no stone unturned. The production sets out to show the humanity that can be found in the mistakes we make during our adolescent years.

The theme focuses on how students work to cope with these pressures — whether the consequences last a couple days or a lifetime.

While written by Simon Stephens, the play is completely produced by undergraduate theater students and directed by senior Kyle Aschbrenner.

The idea for the project was born out of the very first class the seniors took as freshman in the fall of 2015. The play “Punk Rock” was read in class, and the students were enamored with the idea of a production.

After submitting the show to be considered for the department’s season, the students set out to produce the play themselves as their senior capstone project. Their unique student perspective offers a real depth to the pressures of coming of age and stepping into the future.

“This is four years in the making, and now we’re producing it ourselves,” Aschbrenner said. “What’s more punk rock than that?”

Viewer discretion is advised, as the play may include heavy themes, explicit language, violence and gunshots.

Performances will be in the Christian H. Moe Laboratory Theater.

Showtimes are: 7:30 p.m. on Nov. 9 and 10, and 2 p.m. on Nov. 11.

Tickets are available as a season package, or individually for each show.

Series tickets are $64 for adults and $24 for students. Individual tickets are $18 for adults and $6 for students.

Both season and individual tickets can be purchased by phone at 877-725-8547; online at; in person at the SIU Arena or McLeod Theater Box offices from noon to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday; by mail at SIU Ticket Office, Lingle Hall – Mail Code 6620, 1490 Douglas Dr. Carbondale, IL 62901.

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