Rhode Island theater professionals, Susan Collyer of Barrington and Judy de Perla of East Providence, are creating an oral history/performance piece focused on the life experiences of East Bay senior citizens since 1913 and their perspectives on Rhode Island history. The focus of the project is to create a space where their experience, strength, humor and hope will be honored, and thereby strengthen our awareness and connection in our communities. This unusual project will be presented by young actors from the Rhode Island area, re-enacting the stories of nine senior citizens who have been interviewed and filmed.
“This has been one of the most thrilling and wonderful productions I’ve ever been involved in,” says Susan Collyer. “These people have so much to share and have been through such incredible experiences from the terrifying to the sublime. The idea was to honor the Town of Barrington for entrusting monies to build the handicap access and to the Center for creating a wonderful opportunity for artists and the community at large. This is a wonderful way to open the doors to all ages to enjoy the Center. I think we will sell out fast as the project is exploding with interest and is so profoundly unique.”
Denise Conway, the chair of the FBSCC’s program committee, is thrilled about the program as well. “‘Rhode Island Reflections’ represents a tremendous step for us as we seek to expand the breadth of programs available to East Bay residents. The immersive, live theatre performance that Susan, Judy, and their collaborators are creating will be a fantastic program and a great fit for this historic facility.”
A documentary is planned for the filming of the entire process and performance. Tickets will be pre-sold as there is very limited seating and a short run of the show, November 21 and 22 at 7 p.m.