This special benefit performance of The Voice Bank took place at the Theatre Arts Department at CSU Long Beach and benefited the ALS Association Golden West Chapter and the CSULB Theatre Arts department. The performance, sponsored by Edison International, was broadcast live through the ALS Association website so that people homebound with the disease could still experience this live theatrical event.
The Voice Bank, a meditation on letting go, tells the story of one woman who defies her ALS diagnosis to fight for the privilege to keep speaking. Caban plays both herself and Terry, a woman with an indomitable spirit and a passion for performance, as they manage Terry’s progressing symptoms through voice and accent training.
At first look, the obstacle of this story, a “love story” in a sense between Andrea and Terry, is the disease. But the play is also a David and Goliath story: Andrea and Terry versus individuals in the medical community. Terry’s successes and Caban’s expertise are questioned by individuals in the medical community; so the play then asks, “Who owns the knowledge of our bodies? Who owns the knowledge of our experience?”