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University of Missouri Health Care News Releases
Children's Hospital patients display artwork at local theatre production

January 11, 2011                                                                       Contact: Matt Splett
                                                                                                      Media Coordinator
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                    (573) 882-5663

COLUMBIA, Mo. — The talents and artwork of 30 MU Children’s Hospital patients will be on display during the PACE Youth Theatre’s 4th Annual Arts in Health production of “The Yellow Boat,” a play scheduled for Jan. 13-16 at Jesse Auditorium.

After hearing the story of “The Yellow Boat,” hospital patients created small quilt squares expressing the things they like, love and what makes them happy. The positive reactions to the story resulted in a range of creative designs — from pictures of hearts and smiling faces to written messages of love.

Each patient’s quilt square was sewn together to make a four-foot by six-foot quilt, which patients will see when it is displayed publicly for the first time during the PACE production of “The Yellow Boat.”

“The quilt is a wonderful example of how powerful art can be in the healing and recovery of patients,” said Sandy Scotten, director of MU Health Care’s Art in Health Care program. “The kids will enjoy seeing how their artwork helped produce a large and beautiful quilt that will be on display as a permanent piece of artwork at Children’s Hospital.”

University of Missouri Health Care’s Art in Health Care program is a sponsor of “The Yellow Boat” production.

The play is based on the true story of a little boy named Benjamin who faces many challenges with the courage and creativity known only to a child. A gifted artist, he channels his physical and emotional pain into his colorful and imaginative drawings.

The play was written by David Saar, the father of Benjamin, as a way to celebrate his son’s life. Born with congenital hemophilia, Benjamin contracted HIV through a blood transfusion. He lost his battle with AIDS at the age of eight.

Benjamin inspired his father to share his powerful story through the medium of theatre. “The Yellow Boat” received both the Distinguished Play Award from the Kennedy Center New Visions/New Voices and the Outstanding Play Award from the International Association of Theatre for Children and Young People.

The PACE Youth Theatre’s production of “The Yellow Boat” is scheduled for 7 p.m. Jan. 13-15, with a 2 p.m. matinee on Jan. 16. All performances will take place at Jesse Auditorium. Tickets are available at the door. Tickets for adults cost $10; student tickets cost $7; and tickets for children 12 and under cost $5. For more information, please visit www.kidsintheact.org.

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