Benefiting the Quick Center – and suicide prevention

Vanessa Williams, Blair Underwood, Hari Nef and Wilson Cruz headline the one-night-only, virtual staging of Stan Zimmerman’s play “Right Before I Go” for Fairfield University’s Regina A. Quick Center for the Arts tomorrow, Oct. 10 at 8 p.m. Proceeds from the performance will benefit programming at the Quick as well as two suicide awareness and prevention charities – the JED Foundation (JEDFoundation.org) and the Connecticut chapter of the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention (afsp.org).

In “Right Before I Go,” Zimmerman (“The Golden Girls,” Roseanne, Gilmore Girls”) brings to life the last words, written in letters, of individuals lost to suicide — including veterans, those bullied, the heartsick, the mentally ill and the achingly lonely — as well as those who have survived suicide attempts. Since its first performance at the Hollywood Fringe Festival in 2015, the play has traveled across the country, raising awareness and offering hope for suicide prevention.

As described on broadwayworld.com, “This poignant, deeply moving and surprisingly light play invokes a raw and authentic approach to storytelling in an effort to help broaden the public perspective of suicide, eliminate the stigma associated with depression and strengthen the relationship between survivors and those struggling every day.”

Broadway and Off-Broadway director Michael Wilson (“Enchanted April, The Trip to Bountiful”) directs this unusual performance, in which the actors will participate through narrated readings from remote “safe spaces.” After the performance, there will be a panel discussion including child and adolescent psychiatrist Andrew Gerber, M.D,. and Michael Groat, PhD, chief clinical officer of Silver Hill Hospital in New Canaan.

In association with R. Erin Craig / La Vie Productions, this presentation is part of the Quick’s Global Theatre performance series curated by Broadway and Off-Broadway producer Cheryl Wiesenfeld, who says that “we get better as a society by sharing our stories with each other.”  

Tickets are $40 for the general public and $20 for non-Fairfield University students. This premier Quick event is free for Quick Center members. To become a Quick Center member, visit quickcenter.com or call the box office at 203-254-4010 or toll free at 1-877-ARTS-396.

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