The Effects of Gamma Rays on Man-in-the-Moon Marigolds, by Paul Zindel , follows Tillie, a timid girl who is verbally, emotionally, and rarely physically abused by her mother throughout her life. But in a twist of events, Tillie win the science fair, and proves to her mother that she is more than just “half a test tube." Author Zindel wrote the piece in 1964 and it raises awareness of emotional abuse in the home. The Tea-Sippers are hoping to attract Acadiana teens and their families to publicize the cruelty many children face in their own homes on a daily basis.
“We go to school every day and see people that we don’t necessarily know, or understand, and think that we can judge them based on what they look and dress like, when in reality we have no idea what they’re going through,” said Kaitlin Romero, 17-year-old Tea-Sippers’ actor and founding company member. “Hopefully this performance can get people to understand that there is always more to a story than is told, and that though you may think you understand someone, you really have no idea what they have gone through,” continued Romero, director and company founding member.
“We can all relate to things. Yes, we know what it's like to be made fun of or what it feels like to feel unloved or unimportant. "Marigolds" is a story of normal people in the middle of realizing just how hard times can get. We all know a verbally abusive person or someone whose goal is to please others. It's a sad story in some ways, but in the end, it's the story of life," added Vincent, 17 year old director and founding company member.
All plays produced by the Tea Sippers are performed, directed, and managed completely by teens.
The Tea-Sippers, named for their daily rehearsal-opening activity, came together as a group in September 2010 after being cast in a play at Cite des Arts. A few student actors noticed that there was a free spot in July 2011 on the Cite des Arts calendar, and they immediately booked the opening and decided that they would put on a play. Meetings for the project progressed to discussions about becoming a formal theatre troupe, and the group decided that they, as teenagers, could benefit from the responsibility and satisfaction of managing such a troupe. Since then, they have directed, acted in, and produced 9 other plays including Samuel Beckett’s Endgame, Happy Birthday Wanda June by Kurt Vonnegut, and Seventy Scenes of Halloween, all without the direction and constant aid of adults.
For more information on the performances or The Tea-Sippers, contact Cite des Arts at (337) 291-1122.