Safe Schools Program in the New York Times

FUN HOME Pride Playbill

The Safe Schools Program of PFLAG NYC featured in an article in the New York Times today about an event where some 20 of our Safe Schools Program volunteer speakers got to swap stories with members of the cast of the Tony Award-winning musical, FUN HOME, and talk about how they connect with audiences. We billed it as a “Safe Schools Master Class with FUN HOME,” because our speakers left with a lot of insight and inspiration to take with them as they head into schools this fall.

Connection Started with Pride March

The partnership between PFLAG NYC and FUN HOME began with the NYC Pride March in June when more than 20 members of the cast marched with us. Wearing FUN HOME shirts in PFLAG gold and holding signs that read “Love Yourself” and “Be proud of your LGBTQ children,” many cast members took part in a Pride March for the very first time, and they were amazed at the crowd’s overwhelming response as PFLAG walked by.

Performance Workshop with Cast

Samuel Nathanson Presents as FUN HOME Cast Look On (Credit: Benjamin Norman for The New York Times)

Later in the summer we came up with the idea of Safe Schools Program speakers sharing with and learning from the cast of the show. We thought it would be a great opportunity to have our Safe Schools volunteer speakers learn helpful tips from the actors on how best to connect with an audience. But the exchange turned out to go both ways as the cast spent more than an hour with our speakers, talking about our common experiences of helping people learn about the coming out experience and embracing the LGBT people in our lives.

We are grateful to the cast members who gave the Safe Schools Program so much of their time: Michael Cerveris, who plays Bruce, the father; Judy Kuhn (Helen, the mother); Beth Malone (Alison Bechdel); Emily Skeggs (Medium Alison, in college); Roberta Colindrez (Joan, the college girlfriend); and Kally Duling (understudy for Medium Alison and Joan).

Read more about the event and comments from many participants in the New York Times article!

Get Involved with the Safe Schools Program

Would you like to know more about the Safe Schools Program? You can bring us to your school or become a volunteer. Or make a donation to PFLAG NYC today to help the program strong!

FUN HOME Master Class participants and guests included (right to left): Alvaro Rivera, Danielle Ehsanipour, Shreyas Kanade, Mary Anderson, Tommy Craven, Julie Tarney, Patricia Mikes, Drew Tagliabue, Susan Goodman, Clara Yoon, Suzanne Ramos, Charlie Trotman, Lee Schwartz, Samuel Nathanson, Shannon Sass, Kalima McKenzie-Simms, Johanna Antar, Rachel Weissman, Carl Holback, Channing Redford, Ariana Holback, Judy Sennesh, Emily Khoo, Nadine Gorelik, Arlene Metrick, Daniel Dromm, Melinda Mangin, and Jared Fox.