A good teacher knows when to hold firm to her plans and when to let go. Sometimes, it is the students who do all the teaching and the teacher does the learning.
This is exactly what happened when Myer's Masked Marauders began work on their Spring performance. Originally, the plan was to do a comic satire about the exploits of a naive Canadian lumberjack, recruited to thwart the Nazi's during WWII. "Hurray for Johnny Canuck" was going to be a colourful, fun, old fashioned superhero story but, as the semester evolved, the need to do something different, more serious, something that would impact the school culture, surfaced.
The Masked Marauders, Myer's theatre troupe, wanted to write their own piece, one that would change the landscape of their school. They decided to explore the topic of mental illness and, inspired by Stamford Collegiate's piece entitled "Invisible Wounds", the troupe began to research and explore, through personal journeys and interviews, issues surrounding stigma, service provision and the vulnerability connected with mental health.
The result is a piece of theatre that is entirely raw, honest and authentic. A series of monologues, "Head Space" highlights the experiences fo 16 youth who suffer from mental illness. Each actor delivers their piece with compassion, respect and integrity. Aimed at an audience of professionals, "Head Space" is intended to expose the gaps in service within our health care system. It is intended to provide opportunity for a real discussion between adults and youth.Most importantly, it is an opportunity to hear the voices of young people who suffer from mental illness and learn from them.
Sometimes, the best laid plans of mice and men should go awry.
"Head Space" will be performed on May 7th at 5pm in Myer's Little Theatre. If you would like to come and see the show, please RSVP to Tracy.Garratt@dsbn.org