Theatre gets real

Chelsea Girard
By Chelsea Girard August 17, 2017 17:59

Theatre gets real

A local theatre company is incorporating the concerns of today’s youth inspired by plays and documentaries.

Real Life: An RYT Senior Production is based around multiple short acting performances addressing anxiety, depression, cyberbullying and sex trafficking, as well as a short musical performance promoting addiction awareness.

Shana Thibert, executive director and founding board member of RYT, is hoping the production brings awareness to these issues and to the local resources available to those facing these challenges.

“Our message is that there is hope and there is help,” said Thibert. “Maybe someone will be able to access a resource provided through this show, a phone number or a website and find the help they need.”

Yasmine Sole, 18, said with experiencing some of the issues first hand, the performances act as an open conversation to educate the community about mental health.

“I have been through a number of these issues myself,” said Sole. “Our goal is to spread awareness about these topics. They are things that everyone hears about- but no one really takes seriously.”

The RYT Senior Production has 20 youths between the age of 16 and 19 involved in this show. All performers have been affected by an issue presented in the play.

This show includes a musical performance to the song A-Team by Ed Sheeran, an anxiety and depression related segment, a cyberbullying scene, a sex trafficking piece and a presentation of the effects of suicide.

Partnered with the Canadian Mental Health Association, each performance concludes with helplines, safety tips and warnings. According to the Canadian Mental Health Association, people aged 15 to 24 are more likely to experience mental illness and/or substance abuse disorders than any other age group.

Jenny-Lee Almeida, a bilingual mental health educator at CMHA Windsor-Essex County, said the Revolution Youth Theatre’s take on mental health is an expression of support for mental health concerns and an outlet to reduce the stigma of those concerns.

“Some people worry about asking for help,” said Almeida. “The impact that the RYT will have in the community will be positive in getting the message out that youth are experiencing certain mental health problems and it’s ok to speak about it.”

The Revolution Youth Theatre is hoping this show will encourage the community to research organizations in hopes of finding information, support, and services for those struggling.

Shows will run from Tuesday, Aug. 28 till Thursday, Aug. 31. Doors open at 7:30 p.m. and tickets are $10 each.

Tickets for the show are available by calling 226-345-9891 or by checking out the Revolution Youth Theatre’s Facebook page.

Chelsea Girard
By Chelsea Girard August 17, 2017 17:59

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