About the project
The Addiction Performance Project presents dramatic readings of Act Three of Eugene O'Neill's Long Day's Journey into Night as a catalyst for town hall discussions about substance abuse and addiction as they affect individuals, families, caregivers, and communities. This unique participatory event is intended to break down the stigma associated with addiction and promote healthy dialogue among diverse communities - public and professional - fostering compassion, cooperation, understanding, and positive action. The Addiction Performance Project was originally developed with support from the National Institute on Drug Abuse.
About the play
Long Day's Journey Into Night by Eugene O'neill
Eugene O'Neill's Long Day's Journey into Night depicts the struggles of Mary Tyrone, a woman who abuses prescription painkillers and relapses into full-blown morphine addiction. It is also the story of how Mary's addiction rips her family apart, as her morphine use slowly becomes apparent to her husband and two sons. It is widely believed that Long Day's Journey into Night is an autobiographical play, and that the troubled characters in it are based on members of O'Neill's own family, including his mother, Ella, who struggled with morphine addiction for most of her life. In his dedication of the play to his wife Carlotta, O'Neill states that it is a "play of old sorrow, written in tears and blood," and that he wrote it "with deep pity and understanding and forgiveness for all the four haunted Tyrones." O'Neill wrote the play for personal reasons, and the Addiction Performance Project present the plays to diverse audiences to elicit personal responses and candid discussion about addiction.
Addiction Performance Project Highlights
National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) Short Documentary
Washington, DC / 2011
Actors perform for medical students and faculty
University of Arizona College of Medicine, Phoenix, AZ / 2011
Bryan Doerries, Anthony Edwards, Mare Winningham, and Marjolaine Goldsmith perform scenes from Long Day's Journey into Night
Fort Rucker, AL / 2016
Natural DisasterThe Tohoku Project
The Tohoku Project: Sumidagawa presents powerful dramatic readings by professional actors of Sumidagawa, a Noh play from the early 15th Century that timelessly depicts the unique challenges faced by parents in the wake of unimaginable disaster. Each reading is followed by the responses of community panelists, culminating in a lively, facilitated audience discussion. This interactive event promotes healthy, constructive dialogue about the lasting impact of the Tohoku disaster upon individuals, families, and communities—fostering compassion, understanding, awareness, and positive action.
Pandemic & Climate CrisisPoetry for the Pandemic
Using poetry as a catalyst for an Intergenerational performance and discussion during the Covid-19 pandemic.
Racism & Social JusticeFrederick Douglass
Frederick Douglass is a project that presents dramatic readings of Douglass' speeches by professional actors as a catalyst for powerful dialogue about racism, inequality, civil rights, education, and the legal system with the objective of fostering compassion, understanding, and positive action.