We are a community of transformation...

Last night, Lisa and I had the rare opportunity to witness the premier performance of "Inside Out" a theatrical presentation by an exciting new drama ensemble, the Phoenix Players Theatre Group (PPTG).  With support from theatre professors affiliated with Cornell University and Ithaca College, the audience was treated to a rare glimpse of autobiographical stories performed by each cast member.  Seven men make up the founding members of PPTG, and last night's production was performed by five of them (David Bendezu, Kenneth Brown, Efraim Diaz, Michael Shane Hale, and Michael Rhynes) with two teaching assistants (Jeremy Flynn and Juliana Kliest-Mendez).  While performed in a semi-circular chapel without theatrical lighting or sound system, the work was brillant, provocative, spiritual and thought-provoking.  A Q&A was held after the performance with the cast interacting freely with the audience, and providing more personal insight into each story.

Clearly, this production has the makings of a significant off-Broadway hit with a shot at Broadway.  But, it will never leave Auburn, NY. 

The group was started in 2009 by men "dedicated to the idea that theatre work, combined with group inner healing work, is a true opportunity for all of us to connect and to become more fully human."

PPTG's motto is:
We are a community of transformation
Through the power of self-discovery,
we create the opportunity
to know and grow into ourselves.

The PPTG members are incarcerated persons at Auburn Correctional Facility, a maximum security prison.

You can reach out to them by contacting Stephen Cole: src16@cornell.edu

The Auburn Correctional Facility is commended for making the presentation of "Inside Out" possible.