Chryssie Whitehead will open In My Own Little Corner: My Work In Progress With Bipolar Disorder off-Broadway this month. Chryssie recently chatted with CBS News about the upcoming production.
“I got diagnosed with Bipolar II disorder six years ago and I’ve been unraveling this diagnosis,” she shares. “And my mom passed away in 2013, so I decided to write my own story to help share our journeys with mental health, in hopes that the audience will feel less alone, and maybe see someone in their loved one’s lives and say, ‘Oh, I recognize that person in them.'”
“If we don’t make it a big deal then maybe it’s not that big of a deal to get help,” she went on to say.
Check out the full interview below!
The play is a striking and deeply personal, but widely relatable new autobiographical production (with music) that chronicles the actress and her late mother’s shared stories of mental health – specifically, Bipolar ll Disorder.
Directed by Bryan Knowlton, with musical direction by Nick Wilders, the production will perform at The Abrons Arts Center (466 Grand St.) on Monday, January 22 at 7:00pm, prior to a longer run Off-Broadway in the fall of 2024. Tickets are $15-$35.
In My Own Little Corner: My Work In Progress With Bipolar Disorder unravels stage and film actress Chryssie Whitehead’s diagnosis with Bipolar Disorder at the age of 38, while simultaneously making peace with the passing of her mother. Parts comedy, tragedy, and love story, it’s a strikingly honest look at the generational patterns and behaviors interwoven between a mother and her daughter as they lived out vastly different lives with regards to their mental health.
The production seeks to stop the stigma behind the still rarely discussed disorder and normalize conversations around mental health, so people feel less shocked or ashamed upon diagnosis or when someone they love is diagnosed. After the performance, Chryssie is joined by Dr. Alisa Hurwitz for an open conversation with the audience in a safe and affirming space. The show promotes and raises funds for mental health services in the communities where it is presented.
In My Own Little Corner: My Work In Progress With Bipolar Disorder features musicians Nick Wilders (piano), Tiffany Weiss (violin), Mackenzie Lesser-Roy (she/her) (cello), Jared Mathis (he/him) (drums) and Rick Snell (guitar).
The production’s creative team includes Ken Cerniglia (dramaturg), Paige Sieber (lighting design), Jmonet Hill (stage manager), Lauren Barette (production assistant), Margaret Siller (legal representative), Erin Spears Ledford (associate director), and Ari Goldbloom-Helzner (associate MD and copyist), New Stage Theatrical Management, (general management team partnered by Ariana Sarfarazi, Brent Bejsovec, & Clayton Howe), Innoruptive (marketing team partnered by Charlie Ray, Alexandria Roth, & Clayton Howe) and Dan Demello Public Relations (press representative). Additional creative team credits are soon to be announced. www.imolctheshow.com/team
In My Own Little Corner: My Work In Progress With Bipolar Disorder had its first reading at Ripley Grier on February 19th, 2022 and a second reading on July 22, 2022. Their debut performance was then performed at Riverside Theatre on November 5, 2022 as a fundraiser for the Entertainment Community Fund.
Chryssie Whitehead (Author and Artist) is originally from South Carolina has been working 25 years in the entertainment industry. She began her career as a dancer for the Rockettes fresh out of high school and has had an accomplished career in film, television and Broadway as an actress, dancer and singer. She went to school for musical theatre at AMDA College and Conservatory for the Performing Arts in NYC and landed her Broadway debut in the revival of A Chorus Line as Kristine. Her additional Broadway credits include Kitty/Velma US in Chicago (understudy, performed) and Kathy in Company (Lincoln Center with Neal Patrick Harris). Her favorite regional roles: Bombalurina in Cats, Lola in Damn Yankees and Cassie in A Chorus Line. Film and television work include West Side Story (Steven Speilberg), Grey’s Anatomy, Switched at Birth, Castle, The Mentalist, Warehouse 13, Private Practice, Grimm and the romantic comedy with Raven Simone, Revenge of the Bridesmaids. She has joyfully crossed over to the creative side, directing and/or choreographing, as well as staging educational productions of Chicago, A Chorus Line, Rent, All Shook Up, Into the Woods, Shrek, Grease, How 2 $ in Business and Beauty and the Beast. She is on the musical theatre faculty at AMDA College and Conservatory for the Performing Arts in NYC, along with the dance faculty at Broadway Dance Center and Steps. She can be found teaching masterclasses to colleges across the country. Chryssie is the co-founder of the performing arts mentoring & coaching company, www.BroadwayArtsCommunity.com and is currently touring with her self-published, one-woman mental health awareness show, In My Own Little Corner, My Work in Progress with Bipolar Disorder. Chryssie shares her bipolar ll diagnosis through the magic of theatre with a mission to normalize conversations around mental health and help stop the stigma. www.chryssiewhitehead.com