Depression is the Topic, Extreme Laughter is the Result.
A superb stand-up comic by profession, Brian Copeland, wrote and performed a highly personal solo show which is therapeutic on two levels. First of all, it was 75 minutes of intense comedy resulting in extreme laughter, which is perhaps the best therapy there is. Secondly, he talks about his own bout with clinical depression. The show recounts the 10-day “waiting period”, after he put a deposit on a gun, while the background checks went through. Needless to say, he was trying to buy a gun to commit suicide. During the ten day period, he finally gets some help and his depression lifts enough for him to carry on with life.
As a stand-up comic he is superb as he adopts characters, facial expressions and accents with lightening speed. He recounts various friends and relatives and struggles of other depressives while he deals with his own traumas; the death of his grandmother and his single-parenthood. At times his diction could be improved as some of the lines were lost, but it is an incredible life-affirming evening and highly therapeutic.
In response to the rise in teen-age suicide, Copeland is hoping to take this show to schools in order to de-stigmatize depression and reach vulnerable teens who often feel isolated, ostracized and misunderstood.
“You should be no more ashamed of depression than you should if you had Lou Gehrig’s disease or cancer,” says Copeland. “As I say at the end, ‘If I can stand up here for 70 minutes and spill my guts to strangers, you can tell somebody that you are having thoughts that are not in your best interest.”
The show sounds much more depressing that it is. Mostly I remember the humor, the biting insights and the uplifting nature of the ending. Book tickets immediately for Sat and Sun. June 6th and 7th.
The Waiting Period, Theater off Jackson, International District, 409-7th Ave S. Seattle, WA 98104 (7th Ave & Jackson St. NB free street parking after 6) June 4-7, 7:30 pm. Tickets www.brownpapertickets.com/event/1414106, Info: