Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Secret Survivors

Secret Survivors, a show with the Ping Chong Theatre company is about the secret lives and stories behind Child Sex Abuse survivors. The show is presented with 5 men and women who tell their stories onstage in an interconnected web of details recited from each of the individuals. The success of the show is that instead of focusing on trauma from an individual perspective, the story focuses on the collective trauma that arises from all people who have experienced CSA. The ensemble cast creatively tells all the stories of the survivors, with each person taking on different roles in parts of the stories- in this way, the retelling of the story allows them to be the victim and perpetrator, oscillating between points of power, reliving and retelling their stories in all angles. The stories are compelling and uncomfortable- tales of incest, or pedophile teachers, or friends that don’t know boudnaries. The show highlights the pervasiveness of CSA in an attempt to let the voices of the silenced victims be heard and to acknowledge the ubiquity of this problem. CSA is something most people are too ashamed to talk about, because the victims are most often led to believe it is their fault. Secret Survivors does a wonderful job at demonstrating the stories and complexity of CSA.