THIS IS TREATMENT
Grace, a Black woman in recovery, is given a debilitating task: give a speech at Recovery Day on the steps of City Hall in front of hundreds of people, from politicians to people in early recovery, about her recovery journey and the question, “How did I get here?”
In search of her “How?” and with a deep fear that she has nothing to offer anyone, Grace opens up the old journals she hasn’t looked at since treatment, hoping that if she, “traces her past, she will see an outline” and a map of her “How?” will appear.
This is Treatment is the story of Grace in treatment for substance use disorder and highlights the stories of Black and Brown women and their personal journeys as they navigate addiction, treatment and recovery. Composer/Writer Elizabeth Addison began working on This is Treatment in February of 2013, when she was just nine months into her recovery. And though she had never written a play or a song before, the small voice inside her told her that it was time to say “yes” to the childhood dream she had since she was 13: to write a musical inspired by her own life. Over the last nine years, Elizabeth has written and self-produced several iterations of the show, and it has been seen all over Massachusetts and New York.
This is Treatment isn't a lament - it's a celebration! The musical builds bridges, heals communities, gives voice to those who often go unseen and unheard, and challenges us to investigate our own understanding of substance use disorder and who has the right to recover. This beautifully thought provoking musical also helps us understand a powerful truth - that sometimes for us to go forward, we must first go back.
Bring THIS IS TREATMENT to your university or organization...
With a robust Community Engagement and Education program, bringing THIS IS TREATMENT to your Theatre Department or Organization is a wonderful way to engage with your local community. Under the Direction of Elizabeth Addison and Meghann Perry, THIS IS TREATMENT provides participants with an incredibly powerful learning experience in Theatre in the Real. The Directors' unique approach leaves participants and audiences transformed as they delve into the world of substance use disorder and recovery, exploring universal themes and allowing everyone involved to connect personally with the material.
Our Most Recent Production at Northeastern University in Boston, MA, Spring Semester, 2022...
Elizabeth Addison, Writer and Composer for the show, and Meghann Perry, a Recovery Coach Professional and Theatre Educator, teamed up to provide a powerful, unique experience for the cast, crew and creative team. They began with a storytelling workshop in which people with lived experience shared stories with the whole team, who then connected with those experiences by sharing stories of their own. Elizabeth and Meghann used their personal lived experience to inform and educate the cast throughout the process, ensuring authenticity and a powerful learning experience for everyone involved in the production.
In addition, before and after performances audiences were invited to conversations led by community members and experts. These conversations served to educate, continue the healing process, and unpack issues surrounding substance misuse, mental health, recovery, and other themes within the musical.
This production sold out all but one of ten shows and all of the cast members shared afterward that it was a fundamentally transformational project for them.
Performance and Community Engagement Schedule from our Last Production at Northeastern University in Spring 2022:
Friday April 1st – 8pm performance – followed by Panel with the This is Treatment Creative Team and Members of the Cast – Located in the Studio Theatre
Saturday April 2nd – 8pm performance – followed by a Conversation with Maurice Emmanuel Parent of Front Porch Arts Collective on the Artists of Color in the Boston Arts Community – Located in the Studio Theatre
Sunday April 3rd – 2pm performance – followed by a Community Conversation with Maggie Young, Chief Recovery Officer of Liberation Programs, Inc., and Recovery Community Members – Located in the Center for Intercultural Engagement in the Curry Student Center (on the first floor, directly across the indoor quad from the Studio Theatre)
Monday April 4th – no performance or post-show conversation
Tuesday April 5th – 7:30pm performance – no post-show conversation
Wednesday April 6th – 7:30pm performance – followed by a Panel with Alisa Lincoln, Dani Snyder-Young, and Rebekah Moore about Bouve’s Institute of Health Equity and Social Justice Research, its purpose, and how it connects to This is Treatment – Located in the Studio Theatre
Thursday April 7th – 7:30pm performance – followed by a Conversation with Nieisha Deed of PureSpark focused on Identifying Intersecting Identities and Experiences as they relate to This is Treatment – Located in the Studio Theatre
Friday April 8th – 8pm performance – followed by a panel of diverse Recovery Coaches focusing on Diversity and Cultural Responsivity in Recovery Coaching, with Paul Alves, Windia Rodriguez, Daisy Hernandez, and Karran Larson – Located in the Studio Theatre
Saturday April 9th – 8pm performance – no post-show conversation
Sunday April 10th – 2pm performance – followed by a Community Conversation with Dr. Haner Hernández and members of the Mission Hill & Roxbury Communities – Located in the Center for Intercultural Engagement in the Curry Student Center (on the first floor, directly across the indoor quad from the Studio Theatre)
Cast member Sarah Waggoner made this beautiful drawing of characters Sheri and Grace in the final moment of the show.