We last met Maggie Keenan-Bolger this past March, when she was in the midst of working on The Birds and The Bees Unabridged with Rachel Sullivan. The pair created the show based, in part, on the results of a survey on female sexuality they compiled, and then combined with improvisational exploration done with the carefully assembled, diverse cast. You can read more about that show in my post Birds + Bees + Humans = Theater! (Mar 19 '13).
Maggie is once again employing theater to bring us together as humans :). It's a story about stories, "coming out" stories to be precise. Stories about speaking the truth about yourself to yourself...and then to others. It will involve Broadway actors and young people being helped by the organization Green Chimneys in their program focusing on gay, lesbian, transgender youths. In their own words: "Green Chimneys believes in creating safe spaces and supporting healthy development for Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender and Questioning (LGBTQ) youth who are runaway or homeless. We seek to empower these youth and equip them with vital skills and resources to help them enter adulthood as confident, responsible members of their communities who feel supported and celebrated." Maggie worked with this group on a previous project, Queering History, and is looking forward to partnering with them on this new work.
Here's the press release for Not Just Another Coming Out Story. It's a one-night only performance on Aug 13 '13 at Speyer Hall in New York City, and tickets are only $20!
If you'd be interested in lending your voice, you can find the survey here. And you can also watch this video about the survey, if you want to know a little more before you start:
As the video says, you do not have to be gay to contribute. Maggie and her team welcome all thoughts. It might just be an interesting experience to respond to some questions you may not have thought about before :).
There is so much good that work like this can do for the youth at Green Chimneys, and via a ripple effect, for all of us. Self esteem and self discovery can be wonderful by-products of working in the theater, so this kind of production has the potential to touch all those who participate, whether on stage, in the audience or by filling out a survey. The project's Facebook page provides additional information and progress reports, and you can find it here!
If you'd like to know more about The Point Foundation and The Palette Fund, sponsors of the project, visit their websites.
Most importantly, here's the link to grab your tickets for this event: http://notjustanothercomingoutstory.brownpapertickets.com/
Not Just Another Coming Out Story is likely to be not just another night at the theater...it's theater for the soul!