WatermelonAlligator Theatre Company, presents a staged reading of “110 Stories,” by Sarah Tuft at Cotuit Center for the Arts’ 2nd Wednesday Theater on Wednesday, September 4, at 7:30 PM. Admission is free.
From the crash of the first airplane into the World Trade Center to a last goodbye at Ground Zero, “110 Stories” tells the story of 9/11 through the voices of those who were there. Greenwich Village playwright and filmmaker Sarah Tuft, made cookies and shared them with hundreds of people in the weeks following the attack, realizing that it was helpful for those affected by the attack to have someone to sit down and talk to about the awful events.
The docu-play weaves together these compelling stories that were not shown on the news, stories not only from first responders, but from ordinary people everyone can relate to: a mother, a photojournalist, an ironworker, a chiropractor, and a homeless man who saved lives that day.
“The stories are cleverly interwoven with overlapping dialogue, providing interesting interaction between the actors,” noted Amy Rosen of The Gothamist. “Nothing is trivialized here. . . . the immediacy of the situation is realistically shown and your heart breaks all over again in the process.”
The unflinching, freaked-out, and occasionally funny accounts capture the shock and horror of the day, as well as the resilience of New York City in its aftermath. An apolitical accounting, “110 Stories,” was first performed on September 11, 2003, and memorializes September 11th by humanizing history to reveal our innate compassion.
Scott Brown, writing in New York magazine, praised a tenth anniversary performance of the play, writing that Tuft intentionally included interviews, not only with heroic first responders and medical professionals, but also with people who did not claim to be heroes: “These are the people who readily admit to cowardice, frustration, creeping hysteria as, even back then, they began to realize how toxic the air was.”
Stefanie Cohen of the New York Post wrote that Tuft wanted to focus on the goodwill the attacks engendered, not just the grief, quoting Tuft as saying, “In that moment of extreme grief, our response was to do the most positive thing possible. There was a preciousness to it because we were so connected with each other.”
“This is an incredibly powerful collection of stories from people who witnessed one of the most terrifying events in recent memory,” said Jess Wilson, Managing and Artistic Director for WatermelonAlligator. “We are beyond proud to be able to present it, especially combined with the opportunity to support a charity that’s doing important work for those who work to help keep us safe. Admission for Second Wednesday Theater is free, but we will be collecting donations for the Cotuit Firefighters’ Relief Association, a local non-profit that provides aid to injured first responders and also to families in our community who have been impacted by a fire.”
“First responders–a blanket term often used to describe police, fire, and EMS–put their lives on the line every day as part of their jobs,” she said. “Many of the performers are part of first responder families, or are (or have been) first responders themselves. It’s a deeply personal piece for many of us.”
Second Wednesday Theater is a monthly play-reading series of rarely performed classics, undiscovered gems, old chestnuts, and exciting new works. Admission is free, and wine is available for $5 a glass.
Cotuit Center for the Arts is at 4404 Route 28 in Cotuit. For more information, visit www.artsonthecape.org or call 508-428-0669.
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WatermelonAlligator Theatre Company presents “110 Stories”
Cotuit Center for the Arts, 4404 Route 28, Cotuit
Wednesday, September 4, 7:30 PM