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Real-life security guards star in experimental Torn Space show

Who needs actors to put on a play?

Certainly not Torn Space, the experimental theater company that acknowledges no boundaries, follows no rules and hews to no conventions except those of its own inscrutable design. To that end, the company this weekend will mount an original production called "Security," featuring about 10 actual security guards recruited from a small Buffalo firm to "perform" in a show about labor, capital and the privatization of policing.

The production, conceived and produced by Tim Stegner and Frank Napolski, will incorporate a sound and lighting design based on statistics about the nationwide shift from public police forces to private security firms. As research for the production, Stegner participated in an 8-hour training session for new security guards to get a sense of what's involved.

"It's not a statement piece," Stegner said. "There are some real-world sounds that will be coming into the environment. And those sounds, with the presence of security, are going to cause people to have various emotional responses."

"Security" runs April 27 to 29 in Torn Space Theatre's home at the Adam Mickiewicz Dramatic Circle and Library, 620 Fillmore Ave. Tickets are $20. Call 852-1773 or visit

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