Reviews

David Hyde Pierce


Steering Into the Skid is a perfect metaphor of a play, sweet and bittersweet. Letting go of driving is such an iconic stage in the progression of dementia; the authors have transformed that moment into a 12-month journey, with Amanda and Tim bound together on a trip through all the seasons of life.

In the Garden is meticulously and lovingly observed and written, capturing the father’s erratic behavior and flights of poetry, and the struggle of his children to adjust and cope and hold on to lives that are forever changed.

Riding the Waves is lovely with its gentle humor. It subtly reveals the tensions and cross-currents in the family, and the shape-shifting of the father and son gives us a window into Isabel’s world, and into her daughter’s confusion and frustration.

David Hyde Pierce, Emmy-award winning actor and comedian. Pierce has spent years working with the Alzheimer's Association on behalf of Americans with Alzheimer's disease, appearing in Washington D.C. to testify in support of expanding funding for treatment.
MemoryCare Plays
2020-06-04T12:03:57-04:00
Steering Into the Skid is a perfect metaphor of a play, sweet and bittersweet. Letting go of driving is such an iconic stage in the progression of dementia; the authors have transformed that moment into a 12-month journey, with Amanda and Tim bound together on a trip through all the seasons of life. In the Garden is meticulously and lovingly observed and written, capturing the father’s erratic behavior and flights of poetry, and the struggle of his children to adjust and cope and hold on to lives that are forever changed. Riding the Waves is lovely with its gentle humor. It subtly reveals the tensions and cross-currents in the family, and the shape-shifting of the father and son gives us a window into Isabel’s world, and into her daughter’s confusion and frustration. David Hyde Pierce, Emmy-award winning actor and comedian. Pierce has spent years working with the Alzheimer's Association on behalf of Americans with Alzheimer's disease, appearing in Washington D.C. to testify in support of expanding funding for treatment.

Carl Eisdorfer


Caregiving for a loved one with dementia is among life's greatest challenges and opportunities. These plays, which explore facets of the process, provide insights into the powerful impact caregiving has on the individuals and families involved. They are excellent resources and valuable tools for discussion and learning.

— Carl Eisdorfer, MD, PhD, co-author, Loss of Self and of Caring for Your Aging Parent
MemoryCare Plays
2020-06-04T12:04:59-04:00
Caregiving for a loved one with dementia is among life's greatest challenges and opportunities. These plays, which explore facets of the process, provide insights into the powerful impact caregiving has on the individuals and families involved. They are excellent resources and valuable tools for discussion and learning. — Carl Eisdorfer, MD, PhD, co-author, Loss of Self and of Caring for Your Aging Parent

Peter V. Rabins


These three extraordinary plays capture the pain and the joy, the confusion and the clarity, and the challenges and rewards of living with Alzheimer's disease and caring for someone you love who has the illness. For those who do not know the illness, they are a wonderful illustration of the ups and downs faced by those who do. By neither shying away from the difficulties nor glamorizing the humor and love that maintains patients and those supporting them, these playwrights capture the multiplicity of experiences and emotions of those living with Alzheimer disease.

— Peter V. Rabins, MD, MPH, Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, co-author, The 36 Hour Day
MemoryCare Plays
2020-06-04T12:05:14-04:00
These three extraordinary plays capture the pain and the joy, the confusion and the clarity, and the challenges and rewards of living with Alzheimer's disease and caring for someone you love who has the illness. For those who do not know the illness, they are a wonderful illustration of the ups and downs faced by those who do. By neither shying away from the difficulties nor glamorizing the humor and love that maintains patients and those supporting them, these playwrights capture the multiplicity of experiences and emotions of those living with Alzheimer disease. — Peter V. Rabins, MD, MPH, Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, co-author, The 36 Hour Day

Tommy Hays


Riding the Waves is creative, humorous, and deeply reflective of the nature of parent child relationships. I like the complexity and family dynamics of In the Garden and the reflection on the father’s life as an artist. Steering Into the Skid is beautifully done. I love the spontaneous dialogue and the metaphor for time passing as Tim progresses through different stages.

— Tommy Hays, author, The Pleasure Was Mine
MemoryCare Plays
2020-06-04T12:25:25-04:00
Riding the Waves is creative, humorous, and deeply reflective of the nature of parent child relationships. I like the complexity and family dynamics of In the Garden and the reflection on the father’s life as an artist. Steering Into the Skid is beautifully done. I love the spontaneous dialogue and the metaphor for time passing as Tim progresses through different stages. — Tommy Hays, author, The Pleasure Was Mine

Lisa P. Gwyther


This is universally accessible pure art offering rich, intimate, poignant and existentially complex moments in family life. You will find yourself being swept up in a kaleidoscope of time, the true essence of Alzheimer’s disease. You will experience imperfect love, and subtlety leavened with humor, breaking down barriers between “us” and “them”. Everything is here in the moment – the poignant, murky and hot-bottom authentic realities of living with memory disorders. You will care deeply for and about these believable individuals struggling to make sense of and maintain increasingly fragile connections. The MemoryCare Plays are fresh answers to increasing awareness and reducing stigma of individuals with dementia, and they accomplish this far more artfully than any advocacy messaging campaign to date.

— Lisa P. Gwyther, MSW, LCSW, Director Duke Family Support Program, Durham (NC), co-author, The Alzheimer's Action Plan
MemoryCare Plays
2020-06-04T12:25:51-04:00
This is universally accessible pure art offering rich, intimate, poignant and existentially complex moments in family life. You will find yourself being swept up in a kaleidoscope of time, the true essence of Alzheimer’s disease. You will experience imperfect love, and subtlety leavened with humor, breaking down barriers between “us” and “them”. Everything is here in the moment – the poignant, murky and hot-bottom authentic realities of living with memory disorders. You will care deeply for and about these believable individuals struggling to make sense of and maintain increasingly fragile connections. The MemoryCare Plays are fresh answers to increasing awareness and reducing stigma of individuals with dementia, and they accomplish this far more artfully than any advocacy messaging campaign to date. — Lisa P. Gwyther, MSW, LCSW, Director Duke Family Support Program, Durham (NC), co-author, The Alzheimer's Action Plan

John C. Morris


Although each is distinct, the three one-act plays presented here all reveal how Alzheimer's disease tears at the very fabric of families but at the same time discover the deep resilience and humanity that is shared by the affected individual and their loved ones.

— John C. Morris, MD, Friedman Distinguished Professor of Neurology and Director, Knight Alzheimer Disease Research Center, Washington University, St Louis
MemoryCare Plays
2020-06-04T12:26:09-04:00
Although each is distinct, the three one-act plays presented here all reveal how Alzheimer's disease tears at the very fabric of families but at the same time discover the deep resilience and humanity that is shared by the affected individual and their loved ones. — John C. Morris, MD, Friedman Distinguished Professor of Neurology and Director, Knight Alzheimer Disease Research Center, Washington University, St Louis

Ronald J. Manheimer


These three, one-act plays succeed at entertaining us while raising our awareness of how the effects of dementia on a loved one changes family dynamics, especially for those who accept the challenge of providing daily care.

— Ronald J. Manheimer, PhD, author of A Map to the End of Time: Wayfaring with Friends and Philosophers
MemoryCare Plays
2020-06-04T12:26:28-04:00
These three, one-act plays succeed at entertaining us while raising our awareness of how the effects of dementia on a loved one changes family dynamics, especially for those who accept the challenge of providing daily care. — Ronald J. Manheimer, PhD, author of A Map to the End of Time: Wayfaring with Friends and Philosophers

Soo Borson


These three plays catch the light and shadow that play across the lives of people with dementia, and of our own along with theirs. Dr. Margaret Noel’s playwriting competition was an inspired act of compassionate creation, and she deserves our deepest thanks: these plays get under our skin, when we might prefer the illusion of a cure that’s right around the corner. We “steer into the skid” with Tim and Amanda as the intimacy of everyday forgetting shades imperceptibly into early Alzheimer’s - and suddenly their private world is on display, made public by the act of diagnosis. We, too, are confused as Arthur comes untethered from the world of every day, but we ground ourselves again in his deep connection to those he loves if they can but join him in the beauty of the world he used to paint. And we ourselves enter into the watery ebb and flow of past and present that Isabel inhabits, so beautifully rendered in its unbounded time and its challenge to her children’s own identity. These plays can help to make our communities more ‘dementia-friendly’, and they should be seen, or read at least, by everyone with a heart to make that happen.

— Soo Borson, MD, Professor (Emerita), University of Washington School of Medicine
MemoryCare Plays
2020-06-04T12:26:44-04:00
These three plays catch the light and shadow that play across the lives of people with dementia, and of our own along with theirs. Dr. Margaret Noel’s playwriting competition was an inspired act of compassionate creation, and she deserves our deepest thanks: these plays get under our skin, when we might prefer the illusion of a cure that’s right around the corner. We “steer into the skid” with Tim and Amanda as the intimacy of everyday forgetting shades imperceptibly into early Alzheimer’s - and suddenly their private world is on display, made public by the act of diagnosis. We, too, are confused as Arthur comes untethered from the world of every day, but we ground ourselves again in his deep connection to those he loves if they can but join him in the beauty of the world he used to paint. And we ourselves enter into the watery ebb and flow of past and present that Isabel inhabits, so beautifully rendered in its unbounded time and its challenge to her children’s own identity. These plays can help to make our communities more ‘dementia-friendly’, and they should be seen, or read at least, by everyone with a heart to make that happen. — Soo Borson, MD, Professor (Emerita), University of Washington School of Medicine

Charles OyamO Gordon


These three one-acts dramatize the emotional toll when the most complex grid in the human universe, the brain, malfunctions. They also show the value of genuine, loving care. They are simultaneously truthful, enriching, and moving.

— Charles OyamO Gordon, Writer-in-Residence at The University of Michigan, author, Boundless Grace and The Resurrection of Lady Lester
MemoryCare Plays
2020-06-04T12:27:04-04:00
These three one-acts dramatize the emotional toll when the most complex grid in the human universe, the brain, malfunctions. They also show the value of genuine, loving care. They are simultaneously truthful, enriching, and moving. — Charles OyamO Gordon, Writer-in-Residence at The University of Michigan, author, Boundless Grace and The Resurrection of Lady Lester

Stuart Dybek


The MemoryCare Plays is a collection that marshals theater’s unique power to confront the human condition with a gaze clear and unwavering, and ultimately all the more compassionate for being so.

— Stuart Dybek, MacArthur Fellow and Whiting Writers’ Award Winner, author: The Coast of Chicago, I Sailed with Magellan, and Streets in Their Own Ink
MemoryCare Plays
2020-06-04T12:27:22-04:00
The MemoryCare Plays is a collection that marshals theater’s unique power to confront the human condition with a gaze clear and unwavering, and ultimately all the more compassionate for being so. — Stuart Dybek, MacArthur Fellow and Whiting Writers’ Award Winner, author: The Coast of Chicago, I Sailed with Magellan, and Streets in Their Own Ink

Edward M. Moersfelder


In the summer of 2013, I had the pleasure of reading the role of Tim in Steering into the Skid. For me, for the artist reading Amanda, and for the audience, the play was a brilliant stroke of lightning into a dark world. Each of the works in this moving anthology provides a unique look at the grief, the anger, and the love experienced by the victims—both the afflicted and the bystanders—of memory loss. For anyone touched by this unforgiving disease, and there are many of us, this rich volume is light in that dark.

— Edward M. Moersfelder, Theatre Artist and Writer, St. Croix (WI) Festival Theatre
MemoryCare Plays
2020-06-04T12:27:37-04:00
In the summer of 2013, I had the pleasure of reading the role of Tim in Steering into the Skid. For me, for the artist reading Amanda, and for the audience, the play was a brilliant stroke of lightning into a dark world. Each of the works in this moving anthology provides a unique look at the grief, the anger, and the love experienced by the victims—both the afflicted and the bystanders—of memory loss. For anyone touched by this unforgiving disease, and there are many of us, this rich volume is light in that dark. — Edward M. Moersfelder, Theatre Artist and Writer, St. Croix (WI) Festival Theatre

Marcia Wofford


The MemoryCare Plays enhance our understanding of dementia through poignant illustrations of loss and love. Dr. Noel, a nationally recognized geriatrician, provides provocative discussion points for each play based on her experience caring for patients and families. A unique addition to the library of medical humanities, this work will influence physicians and physicians in training for years to come.

— Marcia Wofford, MD, Associate Dean of Medical Education Wake Forest School of Medicine, Winston-Salem, NC
MemoryCare Plays
2020-06-04T12:27:54-04:00
The MemoryCare Plays enhance our understanding of dementia through poignant illustrations of loss and love. Dr. Noel, a nationally recognized geriatrician, provides provocative discussion points for each play based on her experience caring for patients and families. A unique addition to the library of medical humanities, this work will influence physicians and physicians in training for years to come. — Marcia Wofford, MD, Associate Dean of Medical Education Wake Forest School of Medicine, Winston-Salem, NC

Dr. Murali Doraiswamy


MemoryCare has been recognized as an outstanding program for its compassionate and excellent care of patients and families. If you are caring for someone with dementia or know someone who is a caregiver, this anthology of plays will help you better understand the complexities that families face with this devastating disease.

— Dr. Murali Doraiswamy, Professor of Psychiatry and Medicine, Duke University, co-author, The Alzheimer’s Action Plan
MemoryCare Plays
2020-06-04T12:28:16-04:00
MemoryCare has been recognized as an outstanding program for its compassionate and excellent care of patients and families. If you are caring for someone with dementia or know someone who is a caregiver, this anthology of plays will help you better understand the complexities that families face with this devastating disease. — Dr. Murali Doraiswamy, Professor of Psychiatry and Medicine, Duke University, co-author, The Alzheimer’s Action Plan

Eric Kandel


Memory is the glue that holds our mental lives together. Without the unifying force of memory our consciousness would be broken up into as many fragments as there are seconds in the day. Imagine a life without memory! In The MemoryCare Plays we see this illustrated brilliantly and empathically. These are wonderful plays that beautifully depict the tragedy of Alzheimer’s for the patient and for the family.

— Eric Kandel, MD, University Professor, and Professor of Psychiatry Columbia University, recipient of the Nobel Prize in Physiology 2000
MemoryCare Plays
2020-06-04T12:28:34-04:00
Memory is the glue that holds our mental lives together. Without the unifying force of memory our consciousness would be broken up into as many fragments as there are seconds in the day. Imagine a life without memory! In The MemoryCare Plays we see this illustrated brilliantly and empathically. These are wonderful plays that beautifully depict the tragedy of Alzheimer’s for the patient and for the family. — Eric Kandel, MD, University Professor, and Professor of Psychiatry Columbia University, recipient of the Nobel Prize in Physiology 2000
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MemoryCare Plays

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Press

2020 Georgia Crump Award

MemoryCare Announces Recipient of the 2020 Georgia Crump Certified Nursing Assistant AwardSherry Kasten, a certified nursing assistant from the North…

IPPY Award

Playwright Matthew Widman receives the IPPY Award at ceremony in New York City in May, 2014.

Asheville Citizen Times Health Kudos: IPPY Award Release

Nonprofit wins for “The MemoryCare Plays”

ASHEVILLE – MemoryCare’s recently published book, “The MemoryCare Plays,” has received a bronze medal for best anthology at the 2014 Independent Publisher Book Awards. The IPPY awards honor the year’s best independently published books and was presented in New York City on May 28. In 2014, the contest drew more than 5,500 entries from authors and publishers in all 50 U.S. states, nine Canadian provinces, and 32 countries.

“The MemoryCare Plays” are edited by Dr. Margaret A. Noel, founder of MemoryCare, a nonprofit that provides integrated services for persons with Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias and their caregivers.

The three plays contained in “The MemoryCare Plays” anthology strive to dramatize the full impact of progressive memory disorders upon the individual and to illustrate the richness and complexity of the caregiving relationship, with all of its challenges and rewards.

Award Winning

The MemoryCare Plays received a bronze medal for best anthology at the 2014 Independent Publisher Book Awards. The “IPPY” Awards honor the year’s best independently published books. In 2014, the contest drew over 91 entries from authors and publishers in all 50 U.S. states, nine Canadian provinces, and 32 countries overseas.

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