Arkansas Tech to Stage Controversial Play on School Shootings

RUSSELLVILLE, AR - A student production of the Broadway musical "Assassins" will go on although university officials have yet to say if they will allow the actors to use fake guns.

The production at Arkansas Tech University was called off after the shootings at Northern Illinois University.  Tech officials expressed concern that the sound of blank bullets fired by actors would be mistaken by passers-by for real gunfire.

The Tony-award winning play now is scheduled for the weekend of March 14.

School spokeswoman Susie Nicholson said a decision will be made soon as to whether to allow fake guns.

John Weidman, who co-wrote the musical with Stephen Sondheim, urged the school president to allow the performance.  The New York-based National Coalition Against Censorship also said the students should be able to put on the play about presidential assasins.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)