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Saturday at 7pm EST: Talking It Out Virtual Arts Festival to Present One-Act Festival
Includes plays by Lauren Silverstein, Pamela Meek & Kwok-Sze Wong in support of mental health awareness
Poster design: Ryan Thornhill
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On March 18th at 7pm EST, the Talking It Out Virtual Arts Festival will present its next series of one-act plays by emerging playwrights, featuring actors and directors from around the world, in support of raising mental health awareness.
This month’s selected plays include "Confessions of a College Student" by Lauren Silverstein & directed by Gabrielle Meacham, starring Jasmine K. Bernard, Courtney Naomi Walker, Sommer Barstow, Caroline Wiggins, Lisa Maciel, Izzy Saks, Laura K. Lewis & Kathryn Smith; "How to Be a Good Mom...When You Have a Schizophrenic Mother for a Role Model" written by Pamela Meek and directed by & starring Cinda Goeken; & "caucAsian" written by Kwok-Sze Wong & directed by Founding Artistic Director Anthony J. Piccione, starring Jason Truong, Michael Stack, Daniel Marsala & Connie Gowright.
Tickets are free, but donations are strongly encouraged. For our March 18th performance, half of all donations will go to the National Asian American Pacific Islander Mental Health Association to provide mental health support & resources to the AAPI community, while the other half goes to the participating artists. More information on reserving tickets can be found via Eventbrite (www.eventbrite.com/e/394717419427) or by visiting www.linktr.ee/talkingitoutfest and following @talkingitoutfest on Facebook and Instagram.
Now in its third season, the Talking It Out Virtual Arts Festival’s current leadership slate consists of Producing Artistic Director Anthony J. Piccione, Associate Artistic Director Ryan Thornhill, Program Manager Maria Fe Picar & Literary Manager Angelo Lorenzo.
Founded in 2020 by Mr. Piccione during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, the original Talking It Out performance was presented live at the Dramatists Guild Foundation's Music Hall on March 10th, 2019. At the time of the initial readings, Michael D'Antoni wrote a rave review of the event for Five-Star Arts Journals, describing it as having “nothing less than pure, unadulterated, genuine, unpretentious focus on the agonies and anguish of mental illness, while also celebrating the triumphs and accomplishments over those living with, or those living with someone who suffers from mental health issues.”
Originally intended to be a one-time event of minimalistic staged reading of short plays, the event has since been revived as an ongoing festival of plays - as well as an expanding line-up of additional arts programming - presented online via Zoom. At the time of the inaugural November 2020 performance, Jan Ewing of Hi! Drama praised the festival for having “drawn from a wide range of ages and genders” and for “detailing the pain and distress encountered not only by those suffering from the various disorders but also those who support them.” Since then, the festival has continued to reach thousands of artists & audience members worldwide, and recently received four nominations for the 2023 Young-Howze Theatre Awards including for Festival of the Year. Each of the plays is presented by an ensemble of actors from different corners of the world, highlighting various issues related to mental illness - ranging from anxiety, depression, neurodivergency, PTSD, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, dementia, and more.