Patients and families visited the fantasy land of Narnia this week, and they didn’t even have to leave the 14th-floor waiting room of Texas Children’s Cancer and Hematology Centers.
Actors Kathleen Brown and Mark McManus took on the roles of several characters to bring The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe to life. The performance was based on a series of classic books by C.S. Lewis, which follow four siblings in World War II-era England through a wardrobe and into the magical world of Narnia.
“We have about 140 appointments a day in our outpatient clinic, so at any given time we have an audience of about 20 to 60 patients in our waiting room,” Carol Herron, Periwinkle Arts In Medicine coordinator at Texas Children’s Cancer and Hematology Centers, said. “We have children of all ages and we have people that come here from all over the world to be treated.”
During the 40-minute production, Brown and McManus shifted seamlessly between portraying Lucy, Edmund, the White Witch, Aslan, Mr. Tumnus and other characters. They also asked patients to play creatures who had been turned to stone by the White Witch. Brown and McManus are members of professional theater ministry A.D. Players, and appeared in conjunction with arts-in-education group Young Audiences of Houston.
The performance was just the kind break Leo Mosqueda, 11, needed. Mosqueda and his parents were at the hospital to start another round of chemotherapy to treat his brain tumor.
“It was a good performance and the characters were good,” Mosqueda said. “It actually really helped a lot today because it took away a lot of stress for me. I was nervous to come today.”
Performances are staged three to four times a month at Texas Children’s, although this one was a little bit different.
“We have been working with Young Audiences of Houston for years, but some productions are easier to bring into the clinic than others, and this one was a little more labor intensive because of the props and the set,” Herron explained. “The Center for Performing Arts Medicine (CPAM) generously agreed to underwrite the performance so our patients and other partners in the Texas Medical Center could see it.”
J. Todd Frazier, director of CPAM at Houston Methodist, said it was a treat to bring programming to children.
“We all work together and we are very collaborative, so it is wonderful to see the impact we are having collectively in the arts,” Frazier said.
At the end of The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe, bells chimed and the audience applauded as Lucy, Edmond, Susan, Peter and their Narnia friends defeated the White Witch and returned home through the wardrobe.
“Theater is captivating to everyone because it is visually stimulating,” Herron said. “It can catch a baby’s attention and entertain adults at the same time. And if it makes their wait any easier, we have accomplished our goal.”
Baby shower help for 50 Veteran mothers at Miami VA hospital https://t.co/gzMBOgxeit via @wsvn
RT @bilalmomhammad: Great to see our pathology colleagues at @utmbhealth doing so well !!! @utmbnews @UTMB_Pathology @UTMBProvost https://t…
MD Anderson Cancer Center@MDAndersonNews
Daughter, caregiver Carrick Terhune shares the creative ways she supported her mom through #protontherapy for a rare #headandneckcancer: https://t.co/MpKEHxoaQO @MDAProtons #hncsm #endcancer
Researchers from Baylor College of Medicine, @MethodistHosp and @TexasChildrens receive a Specialized Center of Research grant to expand blood cancer therapy options. https://t.co/IcGckHPSBM #grants #cancer #research
RT @BruceTjadenMD: Here at @UTCVSurgery and @UTHealth, we are carrying out a #randomized #ClinicalTrial to compare #medical management vs #…
Veteran Affairs Office in Des Moines, IA holding coat drive https://t.co/IUDLZBpiZF via @weareiowa5news
RT @MillionHeartsUS: #Stroke risk increases with age, but strokes can (and do) happen at any age. Raise awareness of the importance of stro…
RT @BCMHouston_News: We are pleased to welcome Dr. Alastair Thompson to @bcmhouston! Dr. Thompson will lead #breastcancer surgical oncology…
MD Anderson Cancer Center@MDAndersonNews
“We’re really hopeful that we can identify a group of women who can get a much bigger and longer response,” says our @JenniferLitton of #immunotherapy to treat #breastcancer. #endcancer https://t.co/vv1JYis5rl
RT @HRSonline: Sudden #cardiacarrest claims 1 life every 90 secs. A few #SCA risk factors include a previous #heartattack, family history o…
The Dallas, TX VA and Vet Center teams met last week with leadership from the Urban Inter-Tribal Center of Texas to outline how their respective organizations can join forces to effectively reach and serve American Indian and Alaska Native Veterans. https://t.co/EBX1x6cPoV
RT @RiceUGPS: Lots of positive change coming to campus: the university is studying ways to create safe pathways for cyclists, and has also…
TAMU Health Sciences@TAMHSC
The Good Run . . . #MilesforSmiles in its 10th yearOn Nov. 3, the @TAMUdental student-led Miles for Smiles continues its stride at Exall Park in Dallas with its 10th annual runathon. https://t.co/5PFPnaDnOL#TAMHSC #AggieHealth #TAMUHealth #Dentistry #DentalStudents #TAMU https://t.co/NJaxKMawVq
University of Houston@UHouston
The John O'Quinn Foundation donates $3.5M to the UH College of Medicine, UH researchers envision in-home rehab for stroke patients, and Valenti students produce a web cooking show — here are your 60-second highlights of what's happening at UH #UHMoment https://t.co/1ork3iw0kz
CHI St. Luke's Health@CHI_StLukes
Sometimes it’s difficult to sift through the rumors to get the facts about #BreastCancer. We’re debunking five common myths, and they just might surprise you: https://t.co/pMnncNr4ul https://t.co/0HNfCjQYgI