Photos by Ken Robbins.
The East End Special Players, a troupe of actors facing developmental challenges, will reach out to the community for financial support for the first time in two years at a special benefit Saturday, September 19.
The challenges the East End Special Players face may seem daunting – Down Syndrome, schizophrenia, autism, diminished IQ, blindness, and a host of other physical disabilities – but “what they can do, what they have achieved, is often astounding,” says East End Special Players board president Paul Rogers, who has a child in the troupe, which has been amazing audiences with live theater performances for 25 years.
The benefit reception for the Players will be held on September 19 at the home of Marie Eve and Michel Berty, 44 Sayres Path in Wainscott. Guests are invited to stroll the gardens, tour the house and take in the eclectic collection of art while enjoying food and Channing Daughters wine, donated by Molly Channing. A Dutch auction will also be held with auctioneer Jennifer Wright from Christies, and a film featuring the Player’s SRO New York City appearance in 2014 will be screened in a private screening room.
The Players will also perform vignettes from their upcoming play – a play written by the players themselves and scheduled to debut in 2016.With their last play, “Gigi,” the Players reminisced on the challenges they faced in the past and their new endeavor imagines their perfect life, or not, if they were all living together. It takes two years for the troupe to develop and bring a play to performance levels. An innovative staff of four with Jacqui Leader as Artistic Director, work with each player helping them to discover gifts they never knew they had.
Tickets to the benefit on Saturday, September 19 are $75 and are available at eastendspecialplayers.com.