Nearly 50 years after President John F. Kennedy’s death in Dallas, Texas on November 22, 1963, Dallas Children’s Theater and The Sixth Floor Museum at Dealey Plaza are collaborating on what is referred to as a museum theater piece, which uses live theater and personal recollections to put that fateful, historic event into context for the young people who were born long after the assassination.
“By combining history and theater, this collaboration with the Dallas Children’s Theater helps the Museum connect with multigenerational audiences,” said Nicola Longford, Executive Director, The Sixth Floor Museum at Dealey Plaza.
The result of a year-long collaboration between the Museum and the Dallas Children’s Theater, Shared Stories, written by DCT’s resident playwright Linda Daugherty and directed by Education Director Nancy Schaeffer, follows two people named Angela and D.J. as they investigate a mysterious old document while listening to memories of individuals who lived through that momentous day.
What makes this play unique is that the video clips that are incorporated into the show come from the Sixth Floor Museum’s Oral History Collection. The stories, told by people who recall what they were doing that day, give the young audience members a direct connection to this important historic event.
“History, literature and the arts are all critical to a child’s growth,” said Sharron Hunt Munson, Board President, Dallas Children’s Theater. “We’re pleased to be a community partner with The Sixth Floor Museum on this project; it is an amazing and unique opportunity to incorporate important historical events into our mission of bringing literature to life.”
DCT actors Lloyd Harvey and Anastasia Muñoz rehearse in-depth with Schaeffer and Daugherty to ensure they do justice to their roles.
“The Sixth Floor Museum staff have been wonderful partners in this project,” said Schaeffer. “We have both enjoyed learning about each other’s worlds of history and theater, and we’re excited to get some audience feedback.”
Shared Stories, which is a pilot project, will be presented to the public on Thursday, May 17 at 11:30 a.m. on the seventh floor at The Sixth Floor Museum. The play can also be seen at the YMCA of Dallas and Woodrow Wilson High School on May 17 and 18, 2012.