In 2016 more Americans died from overdoses than in the entire Vietnam War conflict. And yet those new casualties are rarely considered victims of disease. The documentary film “Written Off” is challenging conventional thinking about addiction. By taking the viewer inside an individual’s fight against opioids, through personal journals, Written Off combats stigma and humanizes the victim.The film chronicles the life of Matthew Edwards, a Crandon High School graduate, whose addiction to opioids began at age 15, after being prescribed pain medicine for a minor surgery. His grippingly honest writing reveals the secrets he tried so hard to conceal throughout a decade long struggle to escape addiction. Matthew’s mother, Jane Funk, currently a teacher at Crandon High School, published the book “What I Couldn’t Tell you : one Man’s Struggle with Opioid Addiction” in June of 2017 and worked with filmmakers Molly Hermann and Rob Lyall on the “Written Off” documentary.
“Every day, there’s another story about the opioid epidemic, another overdose, another mug shot. But these stories often work to reinforce the stigma of addiction instead of humanizing it,” explains filmmaker Molly Hermann, who wrote, directed and co-produced Written Off. “Matt didn’t want to do drugs but he didn’t know how to get out. That struggle is right there in his own words, he chronicled every cc and milligram that went into his body and every dollar he shelled out to get more, all as he tried desperately to get clean.” “We know this film is already making a difference – we hear from people who see it that it made them recognize the addiction of a family member for the first time.” says Co-Producer and Director of Photography Rob Lyall.
All students who attend schools in The Northern Lakes Conference (Crandon, Laona, Wabeno, White Lake, Three Lakes, Florence, Goodman/Armstrong Creek, Phelps, Elcho and Pembine) have the opportunity to compete in the Huisman Honors Recital Competition. This event is named after longtime educator and arts supporter Richard Huisman. Richard was a teacher, principal and superintendent for the School District of Wabeno.
The honors recital competition is open to all instrumentalists, as well as vocalists, guitarists, and pianists who have performed a Class A Solo for the 2019 Solo and Ensemble Season. Each student entry must perform the music that they prepared for Solo and Ensemble. Eight to Ten students will be selected to perform at the honors recital. Each student chosen will receive a plaque of merit for being chosen to represent their school and community. One of the students selected to perform will receive a $250+ scholarship.
“When schools and community groups work together, everyone wins,” says Rebel Drama Director Nick J. Lowery. “We’ve gotten a recent donation from The Pride Ride to help with the Spring Musical, and the continued help we receive from the Players is greatly improving the facility in which both our groups perform and many residents of the area can enjoy high quality theatre.”
Wabeno Area Players and Wabeno High School are continuing their community and school partnership to improve the Nancy Volk Auditorium at WHS. With additions, tweaks and maintenance of the lighting and sound systems, they are working on turning the space into a state-of-the-art theatre. It is coming just in time as Rebel Drama’s March 15-17 run of Queen’s We Will Rock You is going to need to utilize every bit of tech the high school tech crew can get their hands on.
Wabeno Area Players is deep in rehearsals for their next production of On Golden Pond. This classic play and film adaptation is one production you will not want to miss. Dates of the show are March 21-23, 28-30 at 7:00pm, 24 and 30 at 1:00pm. The production will be held in Wabeno at Madonna Hall (1793) Elm Ave., Wabeno, WI 54566. The venue features table seating with beverage service at each table. For tickets call (800) 838-3006 or online at:wabenoareaplayers.brownpapertickets.com.