Mesa couple's play draws on daughter's domestic violence tragedy - East Valley Tribune: Ahwatukee Foothills

Mesa couple's play draws on daughter's domestic violence tragedy

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Posted: Thursday, October 13, 2011 1:20 pm

A Mesa couple will take the stage Saturday at the Wonderama Theatre in Tempe in a performance that underscores this month as Domestic Violence Awareness Month.

The husband and wife will perform all six roles of their drama, “Control.Assault.Delete,” as they have since the show debuted last year.

“We say that rather than have professional actors to tell our story, we’ve chosen those that know it best — ourselves,” said Linda King, 63, about performing with her husband, John.

King said the story spanned their daughter Lisa’s nine-year “off and on” relationship with an abusive partner.

The cycle of domestic violence ended when Lisa died in 2001 in El Paso, Texas, followed by a trial for her ex-husband in 2004. He was convicted of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon against Lisa.

John, 74, who was Lisa’s adoptive father, adapted the story for “Control.Assault.Delete.” The six characters in the play portray the Kings, their daughter, a judge, a bailiff and Lisa’s ex-husband.

The performance is one of three productions that the Kings produce through Fix the Hurt, the nonprofit organization they founded in 2005 to promote domestic violence awareness. The Kings don’t perform in their other two productions, which are musicals.

But the Kings always have a role at the end of any Fix the Hurt performance, when audience members usually have 30 to 60 minutes’ worth of questions, Linda said. 

“I just feel like there’s so much more that you can do (by) using the performing arts, than you can by standing up and presenting a PowerPoint,” King said. “Maybe you cry when you’re presenting a PowerPoint or telling a story. Maybe there’s some emotion involved.

“But not the depth that you get when you’re on stage and telling a story that way. It’s just a better method for us.”

Saturday’s performance will benefit the National Advocacy and Training Network, as well as the Support, Education, Empowerment and Directions (SEEDs) Program.

Tickets cost $10 and can be purchased at Cup O’ Karma at 1710 W. Southern Ave., Mesa, or at Wonderama Theatre, 930 E. University Dr., Tempe.

For more information about Fix the Hurt, see http://helpfixthehurt.org

• Kiali Wong is interning this semester for the Ahwatukee Foothills News. She is a senior at Arizona State University.

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