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September 14, 2010

Atlantic Yards fight tale hits a new stage: Play tells story from all sides

NY Daily News
by Elizabeth Lazarowitz

The controversy surrounding Atlantic Yards may have settled down, but the curtain's just going up on a play about the battle.

As the fight over the $4.9 billion development project was raging two years ago, Manhattan-based theater troupe The Civilians set out to bring that real-life drama to the stage.

"We wanted to let the people involved speak for themselves a bit more - in particular the residents of Prospect Heights and those most closely affected by the project," said The Civilians' artistic director Steve Cosson, who lives in Bedford-Stuyvesant.

The group interviewed neighborhood activists, residents, politicians and key players from community groups and labor unions and combed through recordings of community meetings and speeches.

The result is "In the Footprint: The Battle Over the Atlantic Yards," a collection of monologues and songs that opens in November.

The show will take place just blocks from the site of the planned 22-acre arena, apartment and office tower complex at the Irondale Center in the Lafayette Avenue Presbyterian Church.

The group is now adding in the latest twists and turns to the full-length version.

"I don't think anyone would have guessed that a Russian oligarch would have dropped in out of the sky," Cosson said, referring to Mikhail Prokhorov, the billionaire mining tycoon who now has a stake in both the New Jersey Nets and the new arena.


NoLandGrab: The controversy surrounding Atlantic Yards has "settled down" only because a passel of judges has failed to stop the corrupt steamrolling of an entire Brooklyn neighborhood.

Posted by eric at September 14, 2010 10:20 AM