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Call Time.

Chicago’s Collaboraction Launches Mental Health PSA Effort

While theatres remain dark, the company has started Call Time to advocate for mental wellness support for theatre workers.

CHICAGO: Collaboraction has announced Call Time, a video PSA campaign advocating for mental wellness support for theatre workers while Chicago’s theatres remain shuttered. The company has partnered with National Alliance on Mental Illness Chicago, Season of Concern, and the League of Chicago Theatres to share mental health awareness resources.

The campaign launched on Dec. 17 with five new videos, featuring Chicago theatre professionals in their homes performing daily tasks in quarantine while an off-camera stage manager announces cue calls. Theatre workers included in the campaign are actor and director Lance Baker, League of Chicago Theatres executive director Deb Clapp, actor and teaching artist Robert Cornelius, casting director Catherine Miller, and director Lavina Jadhwani. Voiceover work is by writer, director, actor,  Collaboraction company member, and Season of Concern board member Sandra Delgado.

“As theatre workers, we are usually so focused on our audience,” said Collaboraction artistic director Anthony Moseley in a statement. “This pandemic and the closure of our stages has turned the tides and it is really important that we focus on the amazing individuals who make up the Chicago theatre community. Stress, depression, and anxiety are all on the rise as our stages remain closed. And as long as our theatres are shuttered, Call Time will continue.”

The Call Time campaign’s calls to action include reaching out and calling friends to let Chicago theatre workers know about Call Time resources available to them; calling NAMI Chicago’s free and confidential helpline, (833) 626-4244, for a listening ear, connection to mental health resources or to sign up for a virtual support group; sharing the news that financial assistance to cover the cost of therapy is available through Season of Concern; and amplifying the campaign by creating and sharing an original Call Time video on social media. The script, self-shoot instructions, and graphics are available here.

Chicago theatre professionals and fans are encouraged to help Call Time PSAs go viral by sharing them on social media and tagging @Collaboraction @namichicago @seasonofconcern @Chicagoplays and #CallTime.

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