Story by Sherry Mazzocchi
Photos by DJ Boy
It only takes a few minutes to turn an audience member into an activist.
That’s the premise of People’s Theatre Project (PTP), a Washington Heights theater group that not only breaks down the fourth wall—it invites audience members onstage to change the course of events.
This week, PTP presents Domestic Disturbance – two short one-act plays about domestic violence and housing issues.
“These issues affect everyone – not just immigrants,” said Mino Lora, PTP’s Program Director. “We bring our entire community together around these issues.”
The storylines are inspired by actual events in actors’ lives. Most of the actors live in the neighborhood. With the exception of their PTP performances, many have never acted professionally.
Stories gleaned from actor Lyana Fernández’s volunteer work shaped one of the plays: a woman coming home late from an office party celebrating her promotion provokes her husband’s violent tendencies.
“This community is plagued by domestic violence,” she said.
Fernandez is a co-chair of DOVE, Domestic and Other Violence Emergencies, a program at New York-Presbyterian Hospital. She assists both women and men who’ve undergone domestic violence, sexual or other physical assaults with medical services, counseling and more.
For more info: www.PeoplesTheatreProject.org or call (646) 398-9062