Telling: Adult Survivors of Child Sex Abuse Step Into the Light
A play by Margie Boulé
Directed by Jamie M. Rea
Friday, March 31, 7:30
Saturday, April 1, 7:30
Sunday, April 2, 2:00
Langston Hughes Performing Arts Institute
104 17th Ave S.
Seattle, WA 98144
$25 in advance, $30 at the door
Doors open 30 minutes before each performance (7 p.m. / 1:30 p.m.)
$20 for students, seniors, military
The play’s content is powerful but is not graphic. Adult issues are addressed on stage. Recommended for ages 13 and above.
A portion of proceeds to benefit:
Telling was inspired by the Secret Survivor series created by the award-winning Ping Chong + Company in New York.
Telling is part of Ping Chong + Company's Secret Survivors National Initiative to use theater to raise awareness around child sexual abuse. Modeled after the original Secret Survivors production, social service organizations around the country participated in arts and activism training with Ping Chong + Company, and are now creating their own theatrical productions and projects, featuring the voices and experiences of survivors of child sexual abuse. These productions will become tools for community-based dialogue and galvanize action as part of the national movement to end child sexual abuse. In addition to theatrical performances, Ping Chong + Company has created a documentary and toolkit, Secret Survivors: Using Theater To Break the Silence, which is available for community and educational partners. For more information about the Secret Survivors National Initiative, please visit www.secretsurvivors.org, or contact Sara Zatz at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Child sexual abuse remains a secret rarely shared. In the Seattle production of Telling, seven courageous adult survivors step into the light and reveal their secrets to the audience. Their true stories are woven together to create a tapestry of pain, secrecy, and ultimately, hope.
Using visual images, original music, movement, dance, and poetry, these brave residents of the Pacific Northwest share their personal stories of prolonged abuse by brothers, fathers, mothers, teachers, priests, babysitters, strangers, and "friends" of the family. With courage, some trepidation and even some humor they step onto the stage, and recount experiences that changed their lives dramatically. Their stories are a roadmap to healing and hope for other survivors.
Telling strives to help everyone in the community step into the light of awareness and hope. A portion of the proceeds will benefit local organizations that work to prevent abuse and serve survivors through counseling and advocacy.
Reviews from previous performances
"I’ve been lucky enough in my career to be part of some incredible projects that transcend theatre and entertainment. Occasionally, you get the chance to give voice to the voiceless and stand on stage to testify that these stories matter. Telling is just such a project, and I am so happy to see such important work being done and wish them all the best. Its theatre that truly makes a difference."
—Mark Fossen, freelance theatrical director, actor, playwright, Salt Lake City Utah
"If you attend Telling, you are in for a wonderfully powerful experience - I have been to over 1,000 plays, including at least 300 in NYC when I minored in drama. It is rare that you witness something that is so well-performed. It is even less frequent that you experience the embrace of a theatrical production that touches your heart, mind and spirit. It is a real gift, however, to be in the presence of a life-changing event. This is one of those occasions. Please tell your friends!"
ELISE BRADLEY is a middle school special education teacher for Portland Public Schools. She works mostly with students with learning, attention, behavioral, and social-emotional challenges in grades 5 and 6. This group speaks to her because youth at this age are highly relational creatures, primed for social interactions full of humor, curiosity, empathy, and competition. They keep her active in her personal growth work because they demand honesty, vulnerability, and patience. Despite her mellow temperament, Elise sees her profession as both anti-racist and activist work, informed by her personal experience of childhood trauma. Prior to the original performances of Telling in Portland, Elise hadn’t been on stage since a high school youth group.
DAS CHAPIN is honored to share his story of childhood sexual abuse alongside such a caring and supportive cast and crew. For him, Telling is not only a personal story of healing and strength, but also a tribute to survivors everywhere. Das is very active in the survivor-healing community in Portland. He facilitates a men’s peer support group in Portland and volunteers nationally as the Peer Support Group Coordinator and author of an online guide for facilitating peer support groups at MaleSurvivor.org. Male Survivor is an organization established in 2001 that facilitates three-day healing workshops for men in the US and Canada. He recently earned his certificate for being a privileged advocate for survivors of sexual assault and domestic violence, and loves his ongoing work with OAASIS helping to support Portland’s community of healing and recovery. Das is grateful for the opportunity to share this work with the community in Seattle.
CHRISTI DILLON holds a BS in Physical Education and Health from Portland State University, and was awarded Outstanding Senior Woman for her work in the fitness industry. She opened Studio ImagoDei Pilates in 1999 to reach out to survivors of childhood sexual abuse. She has been a pioneer in the area of therapeutic Pilates and healthy body image, offering an innovative movement arts program called Body Reconciliation. She is a motivational speaker and writer, sharing her own journey to heal through a renewed respect for the body and its healing capacity. Cristi has two sons, Chase, 27, and Tanner, 24. She was happily married for 26 years until her husband Michael passed from cancer in 2014. She has embraced loss on many levels, but continues to stand tall, rise up, and be an example of strength for those who need inspiration and hope. She now offers private Pilates sessions and small group Body Reconciliation workshops in her home on beautiful Blue Lake.
DIGENE FARRAR was born and raised in Los Angeles and currently lives in Seattle. She graduated from Seattle University’s College of Nursing and earned an MBA from City University. Digene is a registered nurse, motivational speaker, and an active supporter of survivors through volunteer work with advocacy agencies. Digene recently wrote Not My Secret to Keep: A Memoir of Healing from Childhood Sexual Abuse, which is garnering awards as well as enthusiastic reviews from survivors, their loved ones, therapists, and support organizations in Europe and North America. As an inspiring motivational speaker, Digene draws from her own life experiences to empower survivors and encourage others to fulfill the lives of their dreams. She is thrilled to be part of the Seattle production of Telling.
CAROLEE HORNING is currently earning a master’s degree in Mental Health Counseling at Northwest Christian University. She is the author of The Journal Of My Broken Life, which is a personal memoir of her own healing journey from childhood sexual abuse. Carolee intends to use her degree to help other adults who suffered from childhood abuse. She is the proud owner of two dogs, a boxer named Rupert and an English Creme Retriever named Willow, and a black cat named Tony Danza.
GABRIEL MIKALSON is a photographer and event producer in New York City who is happy to be back home in the northwest to perform Telling in Seattle. Gabriel is building an event production team, called The Siren Collective, that will be a vital presence promoting the nightlife in NYC. Through this venture, Gabriel hopes to raise funds to contribute to organizations that give much needed support to vulnerable people. Gabriel aspires to truly make a difference.
GORDON ROMEI is a thirty-year veteran of theatrical sound design. His works have been enjoyed from Seattle to San Diego, and he’s proud to keep his literal and proverbial feet planted in the west coast. Over the past ten years, Gordon has been recognized with six nominations for the Portland Area Musical Theater Awards (winning for Rent), and is a 2014 Drammy finalist for The Children’s Hour. He was recently hired by the Portland Public Schools as an artist-in-residence at Wilson High School and continues his educational focus with Staged! and Oregon Children’s Theater. Recent work has included projects with Portland-area theater groups Enso Theatre Ensemble, Defunkt Theatre, Post5, Lincoln and Wilson High Schools, OCT, Staged, and Triangle Productions. Feel free to visit Gordon’s site (repsound.com) for examples of original designs and music, and thanks always to Sarah Andrews for being Sarah Andrews.