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Detour Theatre Company

Airdate: February 6, 2017
We take a look at the Detour Theatre Company, a group with actors who all have physical or development disabilities.

Guests:
  • Sam - Founder, Artistic Director, Detour Company Theatre,Alyssa Gonzalez - Coach and Director of Detour Company Theatre, Natalie Marsh - Director, Education and Outreach of Scottsdale Arts.
Category: Culture

Keywords: theatre, disabilities, Detour Theatre Company,

View Transcript
TED SIMONS: DETOUR COMPANY THEATER IS A LOCAL TROUPE OF ACTORS AND PERFORMERS THAT'S HELPING BREAK DOWN BARRIERS, SO MUCH SO THAT DETOUR COMPANY THEATRE IS CONSIDERED ONE OF THE FIRST OF ITS KIND IN THE NATION. PRODUCER SHANA FISCHER AND PHOTOGRAPHER ROB MCJANNET TAKE US BACK STAGE.
VIDEO: AS SHE COMES UP, WHAT DO YOU DO?
NARRATOR: IT'S THE FIRST DAY OF STAGE REHEARSAL FOR THE PRODUCTION OF BEAUTY AND THE BEAST. LIKE ANY DIRECTOR, SAM IS NERVOUS ABOUT IT ALL COMING TOGETHER IN TIME FOR OPENING NIGHT. UNLIKE OTHER DIRECTORS, SAM HAS A UNIQUE CHALLENGE. ALL OF HER ACTORS ARE ADULTS WITH DEVELOPMENTAL OR PHYSICAL CHALLENGES.
SAM: I HAVE CHALLENGES IN TERMS OF MOUNTING THE PRODUCTION. I HAVE MANY, MANY PEOPLE WHO CAN'T EVEN GO UP A NINE INCH STEP, SO THEY HAVE TO BE ON THE GROUND. I HAVE A YOUNG WOMAN WHO HAS A FEAR OF THE EDGE OF THE STAGE. WE HAVE TO MAKE SURE WE BLOCK HER BACK. I HAVE -- I HAVE ACTORS THAT HAVE APHASIA. THE COACH KNOWS WHERE THEY STAND. EVERY COACH NEEDS TO KNOW THE PLAY BY HEART AS WELL. IT GOES BEYOND THAT. IT'S A RELATIONSHIP OF TRUST. ALICIA GONZALES SAYS THE KEY IS TO KNOW WHAT YOUR ACTORS NEED OR DON'T NEED.
ALYSSA GONZALEZ: WITH BEAUTY AND THE BEAST, I HAVE TWO ACTORS THAT ARE BOTH COMPLETELY DIFFERENT, AMAZING IN THEIR WAYS, BUT ONE IS MORE HIGH FUNCTIONING THAN THE OTHER. I HAVE TO FIND A WAY TO LET THEM SHINE. ONE I AM GUIDING AROUND. THE OTHER ONE, I'M STEPPING BACK TO LET HER DO HER OWN THING.
NARRATOR: DETOUR COMPANY THEATER BEGAN IN 2003 AS A WAY TO HELP HER OWN SON ACHIEVE HIS DREAM.
SAM: I WAS TEACHING AT THE SCHOOL FOR DEAF AND MY SON WOULD PLAY ON THE STAGE. THERE CAME A TIME THAT HE SAID WHEN IS IT MY TURN? I COULDN'T FIND A PROGRAM THAT WAS A REAL ART EXPERIENCE. WE WERE PROVIDING FOR DEAF INDIVIDUALS, BUT I WANTED A REAL HONEST TO GOODNESS ART EXPERIENCE. WHILE THEY HAVE A CHANCE TO PERFORM ON STAGE, THERE ARE OTHER LESSONS TO BE HAD.
NATALIE MARSH: ARTS ARE CRITICAL TO DEVELOP SKILLS, IN COMMUNICATION, PROBLEM SOLVING, CREATIVITY. ONE OF THE CRITICAL PIECES IS BUILDING SELF-ESTEEM.
NARRATOR: NATALIE MARSH IS THE DIRECTOR OF EDUCATION FOR SCOTTSDALE ARTS. THEY PROVIDE THE PERFORMANCE SPACE, THE SCOTTSDALE EDUCATION FOR THE ARTS.
NATALIE MARSH: IT WAS IMPORTANT TO SHOW THAT THE ARTS ARE CRITICAL FOR ALL PHASES OF OUR LIFE.

NARRATOR: THERE ARE 42 ACTOR IN THIS PRODUCTION. EVERYONE, NO MATTER THEIR CHALLENGE GETS THEIR MOMENT IN THE SPOTLIGHT.
NARRATOR: IT'S THAT KIND OF INCLUSION THAT UNDERSCORES SAM'S CHOICE OF BEAUTY AND THE BEAST. THE ACTORS ARE NOT FOCUSING ON THE LOVE STORY BUT RATHER THE DEEPER STORY OF BEING KIND TO ONE ANOTHER. THAT'S THE MISSION OF DETOUR THEATER, TO BRING PEOPLE THAT FACE ENORMOUS CHALLENGES OUT OF THE DARKNESS AND ALLOW THEM THE CHANCE TO SHINE, AND MORE IMPORTANTLY FOR US TO SEE THEM SHINE.
VIDEO: YOU PROMISED ME TO STAY HERE FOREVER.
TED SIMONS: TUESDAY ON "ARIZONA HORIZON." A CONSTITUTIONAL SCHOLAR EXPLAINS ORIGINALISM AND TEXTUALISM IN LIGHT OF THE RECENT U.S. SUPREME COURT NOMINEE, AND WE'LL GET SOME INSIGHT INTO THE MINDS OF TEENAGERS FROM A BEST-SELLING AUTHOR AND FAMILY COUNSELOR THAT'S AT 5:30 AND 10:00, HERE ON "ARIZONA HORIZON. "
TED SIMONS: THAT IS IT FOR NOW. I'M TED SIMONS. THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR JOINING US. YOU HAVE A GREAT EVENING.