Performance to Explore Teens' Experiences with Illness, Hospitalization

By Robin Hindery

On April 30, UCSF Children’s Hospital will debut its second annual performance based on teen patients’ experiences with chronic illness and hospitalization. The free show, “Tomorrow . . . A Better Day,” will feature visual art, theater, music, movement and poetry created by current and former UCSF Children’s Hospital patients. A question-and-answer session will immediately follow the performance. The idea for the project stemmed from the UCSF Children’s Hospital Child Life Department, whose staff wanted to broaden programming and support for the teen patient population. In 2007, under the leadership of UCSF child life specialist Jill Meyers, the department began offering a weekend creative arts program for teenagers. Participants in the program – many of whom were confined to their hospital beds – were encouraged to experiment with a wide range of creative modalities. Later that year, UCSF teamed up with the theater department at the Northwest School in Seattle, where Meyers used to work. Over the next few months, nine Northwest students worked to bring the UCSF patients’ creations to life, culminating in a trip to San Francisco in March 2008 to perform at UCSF’s Parnassus campus and at the de Young Museum. This year’s performance promises to be just as entertaining and moving, organizers say. The April 30 premiere will take place at 12:15 p.m. at Cole Hall, 513 Parnassus Ave. For more information, contact the Child Life Department at 415/353-1203. A second performance, also free, will take place on May 1 at 3 p.m. at the de Young Museum in Golden Gate Park, 50 Hagiwara Tea Garden Drive. RSVP for that show to Emily Doman at 415/750-3522.

Related Links:

Children’s Hospital to Offer Care in Family-Friendly Environment
UCSF Medical Center at Mission Bay Website

Child Life Department UCSF Children’s Hospital