WHAT: The Hawaii debut: The Squeaky Wheel/Homage to Amy
WHERE: Kumu Kahua Theatre, 46 Merchant Street

WHEN: November 24, 25 & 26, 2013; 7:00 pm
COST: $10.00

536-4441, kumukahua.org




Father and Son with Disabilities Perform Play about

Surviving Death of Wife and Mother

      What if someone walked into surgery and awoke quadriplegic? What if they not only
survived but triumphed? What if they earned a masters degree, a law degree and married
Amy -- a beautiful, intelligent, Chinese nurse from Hong Kong? What if they adopted a son
and named him, Amadeus - God's beloved. Then, as as he began a job he loved, Amy was
diagnosed with cancer and ripped from her husband and five-year-old in a few hellish
months. What if he wrote a tearful and funny play about it for him and Amadeus?
Brian Shaughnessy did. Not only is Brian an individual with a disability --- he is
also an attorney, actor, director, writer, widower, entrepreneur and quite possibly the
funniest man on wheels. The Squeaky Wheel -- Homage to Amy, is the brutally honest story
of this incredible father and son's life without Amy. It is their story of struggling and
prevailing without sentimental back-patting. 

     Mark Medoff, Oscar nominee and Tony award winning author of Children of a Lesser God,
as well as Brian's friend and cohort had this to say of the play:

"Brian Shaughnessy tells his story of suffering and survival with extraordinary humor and
compassion. Fate dealt him what might seem an impossible life. His journey is harrowing,
horrifying, and finally inspirational. His dignity, his humor, his life have informed my
own. I am indebted to him for all he is. "

     Brian continues his story told in his book, The Squeaky Wheel -- An Unauthorized
Autobiographywhich begins with his waking up from surgery and ends with his magical wedding ocean side in Hawaii. 

Homage to Amy continues that story. Brian and 12-year-old son Amadeus perform his play. Wife Amy and Brian Adopted Amadeus when she overheard a coworker say that her sister was giving birth but that she could not keep the baby because she was smoking crystal methamphetamine. Amy offered to adopt the child, knowing the child would likely have disabilities.

     Amy contracted nasopharyngeal cancer in 2006 and died in 2007 when Amadeus was five, leaving father and son devastated. The story of their loss and subsequent  battles is daunting. The story of their successes is inspiring. A serious play tempered with humor.

     Brian is now a practicing attorney in Honolulu where he raises his now 12-year-old
son, Amadeus. See Brian deliver the funniest and most touching law school graduation speech ever, his
“stand-up,” his “appearance" on David Letterman and more at his video web pages.