By KEVIN BELLAMY
Director of Administration
HAMMOND — The Towle Youth Theater Ensemble breaks new ground for its 2016 spring season with the world premiere of “Mental” a drama written by a TYTE member, Isabel Zuniga and directed by Dan Brennan.
The play delves into teenage depression and was written last summer by Zuniga in the creative writing program at the Interlochen Center for The Arts in Michigan where it garnered high acclaim.
In writing “Mental”, Zuniga wanted to start an open, up front dialogue about teen depression, particularly teen suicide. Because of the stigma often attached to mental health issues, she relates that teens often suffer in silence, feeling they are going crazy and that there is no help. Her message is that depressed teens are not alone and there is a support network available to help.
Towle Managing Director, Jeff Casey, became aware of Zuniga’s work last summer but reports she was reluctant to contribute her work to TYTE. “She agreed last fall with an understanding that if the work was not ready for staging in front of an audience, we would wait for further revision,” Casey stated. “After the first reading it became very clear that “Mental” was ready for production.”
Performances for “Mental” are 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday, April 1-3. Tickets are just $10. For tickets, call the box office at (219) 937-8780 or visit www.towletheater.org. the Towle Theater is located in the downtown area at 5205 Hohman Ave. Parking is available just off Fayette Street only steps away from our alley entrance at the back of the theater.
No one under the age of six will be admitted. No late seating will be accommodated. Please note the show is rated PG-13. “Mental” contains some strong language and subject matter.