“It’s the nouns you have to look out for…the people, places, and things…,” is a poignant line in the play People, Places, and Things, a frank story about addiction and recovery.
The production had its WNY premiere in May of 2022 at the D’Youville Kavinoky Theatre. Regrettably, COVID’s tight grip limited performances to very few.
Local business leader and philanthropist Scott Bieler saw one of the critically-acclaimed performances and was struck by its brutal honesty. Because of this, West Herr Cares and the Scott Bieler Family Foundation will sponsor the return of this production in January at Shea’s 710 Theatre. Bieler’s generosity means that all tickets will be offered Free of charge (reservations are required to guarantee seating for everyone. Tickets are going fast!).
Bieler said, “What I saw on stage moved me like no other performance I have ever seen. I knew I had to help bring this message of recovery and hope to those who need it most. Offering it free to the community would remove any financial barrier and make it accessible to all.”
Save the Michaels of the World, Inc. Spectrum Health, and other like-missioned agencies are behind this community experience, too. Agencies will be on-site at every performance to share information about resources in our region. There will be a talk-back following each performance: audience members can hear from counselors and people with lived experiences. To create a safe and respectful environment, the Shea’s 710 Theatre lounge will not serve alcoholic beverages at this time.
There will only be five performances from Thursday, January 12 to Sunday, January 15, at 7:30pm on Thursday and Friday at 7:30 p.m., Saturday at 2 p.m., and 8 p.m., and Sunday at 2:00 p.m. Make your reservation at www.sheas.org and use the password RECOVERY.
Spectrum Health’s Medication Assisted Treatment (MAT) team will participate on Thursday, January 12 and the 2pm matinee on Saturday, January 14. To reserve your seat at either of these performances, click here for Thursday tickets and click here for Saturday tickets.
Spectrum Health’s Acting President, Cindy Voelker, said, “Spectrum Health was fortunate to participate in the audience engagement last May and we’re honored to engage again in January. This production is very powerful and authentic in its portrayal of addiction and recovery. Many thanks to Scott Bieler for his generosity, the theatre community for coming together to spread awareness about addiction, and to Save the Michaels of the World, specifically to Aleks Malejs.
Kavinoky’s production is directed by Katie Mallinson and stars Aleks Malejs as Emma with an ensemble of some of Buffalo’s finest actors including Christopher Guilmet, Michele Roberts, Diane DiBernardo, Gabriella McKinley, Ben Michael Moran, Gregory Gjurich, Maureen Ann Porter, Afrim Gjonbalaj, and Dylan Zalikowski.
In addition to her acting career, Malejs has been in recovery for 10 years and is the Associate Director for Save the Michaels of the World Inc.
TRIGGER WARNING-Please note: The performance contains scenes of active substance use, mention of suicide, and adult language. Not suitable for children under 16.