In May, the Metropolitan Playhouse Presents East Side Stories, Personal Alphabet City XIV
New York, NY (PRUnderground) April 11th, 2023
A brutally uplifting true story of one-time lower east side resident Marcia A. Richard will be performed by Linda Kuriloff at the Metropolitan Playhouse. Coinciding with both Mental Health Awareness and Lower East Side History months, the true tale of tragedy to triumph will hit the stage from May 18th to June 4th. A part of a presentation of three solo shows, East Side Stories, Personal will highlight Richard’s struggle to overcome a family history of mental health issues, childhood abuse, and drug addiction. The story of perseverance in the face of adversity and the power of faith, which reveals the truth of life with generational trauma, is slated to both compel and inspire.
The extraordinary journey to the stage of this one-woman show illustrates the power of community in Alphabet City and what’s possible when people help and believe in each other. The show is the result of an almost decade-long connection between the two women with pivotal associations to the lower east side. Performer, Linda Kuriloff first met Marcia A. Richard while working as a Career Specialist at Community Access on E. 2nd Street, helping people with employment barriers re-enter the workforce when they felt ready. Marcia, one of her first clients, had a web of complexities to overcome. She’d been misdiagnosed by a mental health professional at a young age following childhood abuse, addiction in adulthood, and problems with the law. Despite the challenges, with Linda’s career coaching, Marcia earned her certification as a Peer Specialist and even helped someone change their mind about suicide. As of 2023, she has worked for more than six years at a crisis center, helping those experiencing emotional crises. Last year, Marcia fulfilled a lifelong ambition and published a book about her life, “M!ss D!agnosed.” She’s the mother of one daughter and grandmother of four.
Now the two women are working together to bring a slice of Marcia’s life to the stage. Through interviews conducted with Marcia, Linda has scripted a short play in which she will embody Marcia sharing her story from her destructive childhood in Harlem to her life and work today. Linda’s show is part of a trilogy that will be presented at the Metropolitan Playhouse in “East Side Stories, Personal”. This is the 14th edition of the Alphabet City show, in which actors bring to life the lives and stories of local residents.
Kuriloff said, “When I got this opportunity to present a solo show at the Metropolitan Playhouse, Marcia was the obvious subject! Her story is so fascinating. She has overcome so many things and truly turned her life around. In some ways, she embodies the story of Alphabet City. It was important to me that the subject for this project be enthusiastic about sharing their story, and luckily Marcia was. It was a blessing that the lower east side set the stage for us to meet in the first place, and now our paths are crossing again. It has definitely been a transformational connection in both of our lives.”
Richard adds, “I would like people to know that no matter your age, background, looks, color, your gender, your economic status…that you are fearfully and wonderfully made. Everything you need is already inside of you. All you need to do is stir it up! And that’s like in 2 Timothy 1:6, it says to stir up your gifts, and then 2 Timothy 1:7 says God didn’t give me a spirit of fear, but of power, love, and a sound mind. So what he’s saying is stir up your gifts and don’t be afraid to do it.”
Linda Kuriloff and Marcia A. Richard are available for interviews on request. Press photos are attached.
For interview requests, press tickets, or any further information, please contact:
East Side Stories, Personal
Alphabet City XIV
May 18 – June 4, 2023, Thursday, Friday, and Saturday at 7:30 pm and Sunday at 3 pm.
Tickets will be on sale soon.
220 E. 4th Street
“East Side Stories, Personal” is a presentation of three solo shows that are 20 to 30 minutes each based on interviews with east side residents. The shows will feature Marisol Carrere, Linda Kuriloff, and Michael Turner.
About Linda Kuriloff
South African-born performer Linda Kuriloff is a graduate of Yale and Howard universities. Though today, she works as an Assistant Director of a senior center, she has performed in such theaters as New Victory Theater, The Long Wharf, New Jersey Shakespeare Festival, and Steppenwolf Theatre Company. In the days of daytime soap operas, she played various characters on “One Life to Live,” “All My Children” and “Loving.” She’s worked with James Spader, Regina King, Chris Rock, and Drew Barrymore, among others.