News Release

Twelve Angry Men Spring Theater Production

By Elizabeth Tollefson on
Monday, March 5, 2018

A theater production of the courtroom drama Twelve Angry Men will take place in March in Kiehle Auditorium at the University of Minnesota Crookston. A co-production of the Crookston castCommunity Theater in conjunction with the U of M Crookston Music and Theater Department, performances begin on Thursday, March 22 at 12:15 p.m. followed by performances on Friday and Saturday, March 23 and 24 at 7:30 p.m. General admission is $12.00 at the door or one Crookston Community Theatre season’s ticket per person.  U of M Crookston students are free with their student ID.  By special arrangement, high school students may attend the Thursday afternoon performance for $1.  Parking is recommended in Lot G and no parking permits are required. 

This production is unique, combining the artistic talents of the Crookston Community Theatre and students, faculty, and staff at the U of M Crookston—the first collaboration by the two since 2005.

Cast members include community member Andy Pokel and U of M Crookston students Mathias Braun, a sophomore majoring in animal science from Grey Eagle, Minn.; Chris Schmiesing, a senior majoring in software engineering from Sauk Centre, Minn.; Austin Holweger a freshman from Mahtomedi, Minn.; Harsha Praveen, a biology and health sciences double major from Plymouth, Minn.; Harrison Waylee, an international business major from Abidjan, West Africa; Steven Gonzalez, a senior double majoring in health sciences and biology from North Hills, Calif.; and Navjot Singh, a senior software engineering major from Gurdaspur, India.

Alumni in the cast include U of M Crookston alumnus and admissions staff member Mark Belanger 2008 and Northwest School of Agriculture alumnus Allan Dragseth 1957.

Faculty members in the cast include Assistant Professor Scott Leckie from the Business Department and Professor Lyle Westrom and Lecturer Ranjit Riar from the Agriculture and Natural Resources Department.

Alumnus Ken Mendez 2011 co-directs with Colleen MacRae from the Crookston Community Theatre. Associate Professor George French from the Music and Theater Department along with Lauren Wallace, a freshman sport and recreation management major from Bloomington, Minn., have been assisting with all aspects of the production.

The play, adapted by Sherman L. Sergel, is based on the Emmy award-winning television movie by Reginald Rose. The story’s focus is centered on Juror Eight, played by Andy Pokel, who is the only holdout in an 11 to 1 guilty vote. Juror Eight is determined to get the other 11 jurors to look at the situation in a way that forces them to move beyond their personal biases and in the process show America at its best and worst. Produced by special arrangement with The Dramatic Publishing Company of Chicago.

The University of Minnesota Crookston now delivers 34 bachelor's degree programs, 22 minors, and 40 areas of emphasis on campus as well as 14 degree programs entirely online.  These degrees are offered in the areas of agriculture and natural resources; business; liberal arts and education; and math, science and technology.  With an enrollment of 1,800 undergraduates from more than 20 countries and 40 states, the Crookston campus offers a supportive, close-knit atmosphere that leads to a prestigious University of Minnesota degree.  "Small Campus. Big Degree."  To learn more, visit

In the photo, back row, left to right, are Navjot Singh, Allan Dragseth, Chris Schmiesing, Harrison Waylee, Andy Pokel, Lyle Westrom, and Scott Leckie Front row: Ranjit Riar, Harshavardhan Praveen, Lauren Wallace, Steven Gonzalez, Mathias Braun, and Mark Belanger

Not pictured: Austin Holweger



Elizabeth Tollefson

University Relations


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