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"Telethon!" 2016: David Harrell

Equity in the Arts
David Harrell

"Telethon!" is a virtual, theatrical event taking place on The Lark's blog every Tuesday and Thursday this September, produced by The Apothetae and The Lark to raise awareness and support for The Apothetae and Lark Initiative and Playwriting Fellowship. Each week, The Apothetae and The Lark will publish new videos created by members of the community, inspired by The Jerry Lewis MDA Labor Day Telethon, an event that has faced criticism not only for using Disabled people as a fundraising tool, but also for focusing the public's attention on medical cures to "normalize" people with disabilities. The Apothetae and The Lark see this as an opportunity for Disabled artists to begin to reclaim agency and ownership around their stories, images, and bodies.

A Little Potato & Hard to Peel

Video Direction and Content Management: Kristjan Thor
Special Thanks to the New York Conservatory For The Dramatic Arts

It’s a little acknowledged fact that the United States has had Disabled Presidents (FDR & JFK), long before we ever had an African American President or a woman occupy the highest office in the land. However, this is the first election in my lifetime where Disability has been more visible than ever before- although perhaps not in the way many from the Disability community intended; i.e. Mr. Trump’s open mocking of a physically disabled reporter from The New York Times, and Disability Advocates being invited to speak at this year’s Democratic National Convention. While these events are certainly noteworthy, time will tell if this will lead to the two leading political parties viewing the Disabled Community as a viable voting constituency to be reckoned with in the future.

While this current election season may be unlike any other in recent memory, no election was quite like the one that took place at Glynn Academy High School in Brunswick, Georgia (Go Red Terrors!), when David Harrell was running for class representative.

David shares that story with us in this selection from his award winning solo show, A Little Potato And Hard To Peel. Who says Disability and Politics don’t mix? No one I know…

Thank you for tuning in to "Telethon!" 2016 on The Lark's blog!

The Apothetae and The Lark are eager to launch this new Initiative, and are ready to do so as soon as we have the funds in place! We are currently seeking major supporters to help us make our plans possible. If you are interested in helping us please contact Development Manager, Roni Ferretti at

Check back each week for new content, and get involved by sharing your thoughts in the comments section, or by signing up for The Apothetae and Lark Initiative's dedicated email list to receive updates. To donate, access The Lark's donation form and enter "The Apothetae" under "Notes Regarding Gift."

Other "Telethon!" Videos