Cedarville to host A Journey Through Parkinson’s

A theatrical performance on what it’s like to have Parkinson’s disease will come to Cedarville University’s DeVries Theatre.

“What I Didn’t Say: A Journey Through Parkinson’s” will explore the question of how people battling Parkinson’s disease and their care partners can go through the difficult journey.

Actor and writer Matthew Moore, a 1992 alumnus of Cedarville, will explore the journey in the performance, which will be followed by a question-and-answer session with the audience.

Moore was diagnosed with early-onset Parkinson’s disease in 2019 at the age of 49. Instead of feeling defeated, he wrote this play designed for him, a man with Parkinson’s telling his story.

“For an actor to have Parkinson’s is a big deal,” he said. “I feel obligated to explain to [theatrical] directors that I have a tremor. Is there a character in every play that has a tremor? The answer is no.”

At the beginning of his diagnosis, Moore said his experience with medical professionals is what inspired him to write this play based on 11 interviews with different people who are all care partners or patients with Parkinson’s.

In the play, Moore portrays the life of Paul, a patient with Parkinson’s who navigates the highs and lows of the disease. His role is based on his struggles with Parkinson’s as well as the many people he interviewed. Moore plays one of the lead characters alongside Krista Stauffer, who plays five different characters.

The performance is focused on helping people who battle Parkinson’s and is also a teaching moment for medical professionals.

“My goal in producing this play is for Parkinson’s patients and the medical profession to strengthen their relationship so that trust is enhanced and the best care can be provided to each patient,” Moore said. “This play is very emotionally honest but it also has plenty of humor throughout. I want everyone to be able to peer into the life of someone with Parkinson’s.”

Moore earned a degree in communications from Cedarville, a master’s in speech communication, and a master’s in acting. He served as the associate chair of the department of art, design and theater at Cedarville from 1998-2016. Stauffer is the academy director at Boxland Media Studios in Columbus and is a professional actress.

The performance will be held at 7:30 p.m. on Friday, Jan. 13. The event is free and open to the public, but seats are limited. Reserve your spot at cedarvilletickets.universitytickets.com/w/.

About the Author