- MST Autism Education Project
The goal of Mustard Seed Theatre’s Autism Education Project is to create a valuable teaching tool for educators in a variety of settings. The reprised production of Falling at Mustard Seed Theatre will be professionally filmed and edited to create an educational DVD, with curriculum material for classes ranging from education to family counseling to behavioral analysis.
(Deanna reports on FALLING in NYC)
This first week of rehearsals has been amazing and emotional. I spent time sharing with the cast and staff some videos of young Andy, working so hard to learn how to communicate. They read the play and asked thoughtful questions. We had honest conversations about the challenges of love, faith, family, art. Now they’re on the journey of discovering these characters in action.
Our apartment is within walking distance from the theatre, which is great. Everything we need (and much that we don’t!) is within a few blocks radius. On Thursday, however, I had to attend several meetings in mid-town (see how I speak “New York” now?), so I did my first solo subway rides. Mostly success – I always got on the right train, but once went the wrong direction. (Sounds like a description of the artistic process – we’re always on the right train, we just have to switch directions sometimes!)
Perhaps I’ll soon become blasé about the variety of people you encounter on a subway – but not this week. I’m pretty sure I heard at least 8 distinct languages in just those four rides. The teenaged girl in a formal prom gown sits next to the construction worker carrying his dusty helmet and metal coffee thermos. They don’t speak to each other, but I like to imagine conversations, little plays.
We’re moving into the middle part of the process, where daily 6-hour rehearsals rub some of the “shiny” off the experience. Even though Lori (the director) and I have both done this play before – this is a new show, and we all still need to do the same hard work as before. The actors are asking smart questions about certain lines, working to understand actions. They’re discovering what this production will be, and in doing so, are helping me see the story even more clearly.
We’re on the subway. We’ve left our starting point, and are headed for our destination: September 27 preview performances. I’m looking forward to the unique journey!