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Doctors bring a dose of the arts to CCA

April 27, 2012

Photo by Mark Turek

Trinity Rep resident company member Anne Scurria (background) and Brown/Trinity Rep MFA actor Leah Anderson will be appearing at Courthouse Center for the Arts.

KINGSTON - Two very different worlds will be colliding this weekend at the Courthouse Center for the Arts (CCA) in what should be a fun and fascinating weekend at the community theatre. Starting Friday night and running all day Saturday, CCA is set to present “Medical Arts.”

“Medical Arts” is an original art concept from CCA with the purpose of displaying local doctors and nurses in a new light. There will be a total of five events over the weekend, and they will all share the common theme of medical practice, and the role that it plays in our society. And it will all be done with an artistic twist, of course.

The weekend’s kickoff event will be a Friday night soiree at 6 p.m. on April 27. The evening will include cocktails and food, and feature a live auction of visual arts pieces created by members of the medical staff at South County Hospital. The pieces will include paintings, photographs, and other works of art.

The auction will have another medical connection. The auctioneer will be Louis Raymond, a medical school dropout.

Immediately following the auction, there will be a performance titled “Doctor, Doctor, Give Me the News,” an old-fashioned burlesque show. The show will feature mostly doctors and nurses, all from South County Hospital, in addition to some other special guests. The show will be directed by award-winning Broadway director and choreographer Richard Sabellico.

“Bagpipes, ballroom and burlesque all come together in a delicious evening of hometown entertainment,” according to CCA.

On Saturday, April 28 at 1 p.m., playwright Deborah Salem Smith will headline an event called “But I’m a Good Doctor: A Playwright Takes on Medical Malpractice. “The show will include excerpts from Smith’s Love Alone, which is currently running at Trinity Repertory Company in Providence through May 27.

Love Alone is a production about grieving and Healing and recently received the prestigious Edgerton Foundation New American Play Award.
The excerpts from Love Alone will feature the original resident actors from Trinity Repertory Company. Anne Scurria, Mauro Hantman and Angela Brazil will star in the show, along with Brown University Student Leah Anderson and New York-based actor Robert Zukerman.

In between the excerpts, Smith will discuss why she chose to write about doctoring and medical malpractice. There will also be a question and answer period at the end of the event.

At 3 p.m. on Saturday, local children will get there chance to shine in the presentation of “What’s Up Doc?” where kids will be discussing their experiences, worries, fears and even some fun times they have had with there pediatricians, all doctors at South County Hospital.

According to CCA spokeswoman Elizabeth MacLachlan, “What’s Up Doc?” will be semi-scripted. The children will be given a guideline of what topics to speak about, but there specific words will be straight from the heart. It will be directed by CCA Artistic Director Richard Ericson.

Finally, the weekend will wrap up Saturday evening with a reading of The Doctor’s Dilemma, a comedy by George Bernard Shaw. The play is set in London in 1903, and is the tale of a new cure for tuberculosis that has been discovered. The dilemma of the story is that there is only enough serum to treat one patient.

“It’s an old play, but the themes are still amazingly relevant,” said MacLachlan. “It’s a play that could have been written yesterday.”

It is a character-driven story that explores death and dying, the doctor-patient relationship, medical ethics and the impacts of society and class. The play will feature both professional actors, doctors and nurses, and it will be directed by Ericson as well.

According to MacLachlan, the concept for “Medical Arts” was thought up by Dr. Richard Black, who is both a practicing doctor at South County hospital and a member of the CCA board. He is also the head of the visual arts committee at CCA.

If you go

CCA is located on Route 138 in West Kingston. Ticket prices range from $15 to $75 for a weekend pass. For more information call 782-1018 or visit www.courthousearts.org.

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