Sunday afternoon, Americans will prepare for arguably the most significant sporting event of the year in the United States. All completed without thought of the scandal paired with the game.
Last year alone, the FBI led a sting operation, arresting more than 45 pimps and associates, and rescued 16 juveniles. The large-scale event draws traffickers every year, but the cheering fans are unaware.
This year, the theatre department of Missouri Baptist University will proclaim the story of sex-trafficking with two productions of “Cover” during Super Bowl weekend. The collection of vignettes include short scenes with monologues, poetry recitation and songs, each focusing on a different aspect of human trafficking.
“Cover,” was written by MBU Theatre Director Joy Powell with inspiration from The Covering House – a local organization that provides refuge and restoration for victims of sex exploitation. “Cover” discretely shares the stories of the girls, staff and director and founder of The Covering House, Dedee Lhamon.
Each vignette shares the harsh reality of a glossed-over truth: sex trafficking not only happens in America, but lives in the heart of St. Louis, said Powell.
The cast members recognize the weight of the vignettes.
“People typically think it (sex trafficking) happens far away – actually, St. Louis is one of the heaviest areas. It happens at the local mall. It happens within miles of my house,” said MBU student Emily Rice, a cast member of the production. “People are trafficked – but often it goes unnoticed. It could be stopped by awareness and addressing the heart of theissue.”
Recital Hall in Pillsbury Chapel and Dale Williams Fine Arts Center
Missouri Baptist University
1 College Park Drive
General Admission: $10 at door (cash or check only)
Jan. 31: 7:30 pm
Feb. 1: 2 pm