Defense Date


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Fine Arts



First Advisor

Dr. Laura Browder


Welcome to the Branch is a two-act play that investigates issues of cultural differences in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (or LDS church), more commonly known as the Mormon Church. Set in modern-day, downtown Richmond, Welcome to the Branch follows two very different members of the LDS church as they examine and try to understand both their religion, in the context of its cultural and social history, and their place in it. One is Molly, a Caucasian, middle-class young woman from Utah, in Richmond temporarily for her husband's graduate school; the other is Aina, an African American, single mother living in Mosby Court who has recently joined the LDS church. While Aina struggles for survival and looks for meaning in a church where, historically, she would not have felt welcome, Molly slowly comes to terms with the limitations of her own sheltered background.


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Date of Submission