AutismOne Conference
A live, staged reading of
"Symphony for Spencer"
Saturday, May 25, 2019

Cassatt Ballroom

Appleseed Ventures will present a live, staged reading of the short docudrama “Symphony for Spencer” at the AutismOne 2019 Conference in Chicago, Saturday, May 25 during the lunch period in the Cassatt Ballroom. 

Spencer (not his real name), a young man on the autism spectrum, has an atypical reaction to medication resulting in a violent meltdown. Spencer’s family takes him to the emergency room where he is greeted by police officers and tries to escape. To the family’s surprise, the officer in charge manages the meltdown without violence, restraint, or medication.  The cops turn the event into a game, and Spencer enjoys it.  The script is based on Ellen Hughes’ true story "Tough, Sweet Cops," which was published in the Chicago Tribune.

The script will be read live by a narrator and performed by actors on stools who will play multiple roles, interacting with each other as they read.  Appleseed Ventures will edit, embellish, and enhance the story to inform the AutismOne audience of efforts being taken currently by first responders to address the challenges of adults with ASD in new ways.