Music, Memory, an Old Flame, and Alzheimer’s

A Good Day (music, memory, an old flame and Alzheimer’s)

The Shawnee Playhouse

The Shawnee Playhouse

Composer/playwright Eric B. Sirota at the Shawnee Playhouse, for the 2022 playwrights series.

Inspired by the power of music to rekindle memory and awaken the mind, Eric B. Sirota’s new uplifting musical in development to be showcased Sept. 9 – Sept. 24.

Paint the sunrise in your mind. Remember music left behind. Untangle memories intertwined. Don’t let the sun down.”

— Eric B. Sirota (from “A Good Day”)

NEW YORK, NY, USA, August 28, 2023/ — A Good Day, an original and uplifting musical, by playwright/composer, Eric B. Sirota, will be presented by The Shawnee Playhouse (in Shawnee on Delaware, PA) from September 9th through September 24th. Directed by Midge McClosky, this authentic musical illuminates the therapeutic and healing powers of music, art and movement on the splintered and fragmented lives of two families that are intertwined through past loves and tragic losses. Each unforgettable scene, song and dance highlights the importance of creative expression on the human experience, as the characters attempt to navigate their fractured existences through the incessant ripple effects and impact that Alzheimer’s Disease and the loss of a loved one have on those around them.

This musical centers on long forgotten moments and passions that are reawakened for a widowed artist, Sam, who is thrust back into the life of Suzanna, his childhood girlfriend, his first love, his muse, a cellist who spurned him over 50 years ago, and whose mind is declining from the effects of Alzheimer’s disease. After the death of their mother, Sam’s grown children have aspirations that their father, immobilized by grief, will find the desire to paint again. Simultaneously, Suzanna’s grown children long for their mother to speak their names and remember who they are. Through a chance discovery, both journeys become woven together, and the heartfelt impact that it has upon everyone is simply cathartic and inspirational, where both families can dare to imagine the possibility of a good day.

The Shawnee Playhouse’s production of A Good Day will feature top talent from the Tri-State area. This stellar cast stars Dirk Marks as Sam, Maureen Card as Suzanna, Marissa Rachjaibun as Sophie, Erik Sparks as David, Ben Salinas as Paul, and Krista Hulsizer as Margaret. Supporting cast includes Julia Hodnik as Anne, Luke Swierczek as Michael, Laurel Cameron as Young Suzanna, Gaetano Stone as Young Sam.

The production crew for A Good Day includes a veteran team: Midge McClosky (Executive Director of The Shawnee Playhouse) is the director of this production; Todd Deen, music director and pianist,; Ethan Custard on cello; Jack Tang, choreographer; Krista Hulsizer, stage manager; Marissa Rachjaibun, set designer and scenic painter; Cara London, specialty scenic painter; and Eric Uhler, Grant Wagner, and Ryan Cook will be in charge of set construction.

The book, music and lyrics were written by Eric B. Sirota ( He studied musical composition in college and is also an established and highly published research scientist with a PhD in Physics. A Good Day is his fifth full-length musical. His first, Frankenstein, a sweeping romantic musical based on Mary Shelley’s novel, played Off-Broadway in New York for three years, and was then adapted for screen and is now streaming on-demand. His musical “Your Name on My Lips” had two productions at Theatre for the New City in NY, where Sirota was a resident playwright.

Eric Sirota’s father had Alzheimer’s, and in his last years, the only way to reach him was through music, singing songs he knew earlier in life. “I decided I wanted to write a musical touching on the power of music to rekindle memory and awaken the mind,” said Sirota. In 2019, he was the recipient of the Denis Diderot Artists-in-Residence grant to attend the Chateau Orquevaux residency, and there he wrote A Good Day. It was initially developed during the pandemic with virtual readings, dramaturgy and workshops, and this past December, Write Act Repertory presented a staged-reading at the Actors Temple Theatre in NYC. Last year, A Good Day was the winner of the Shawnee Playwrights Series, where two of Sirota’s other musicals had previously been finalists; and A Good Day continues its development with this showcase production.

Showtimes and dates are as follows:

2 pm: September 9th, 10th, 16th, 17th, 22nd, 23rd, and 24th

8 pm: September 9th, 16th, and 23rd

$19.00 Adult, $16.00 Senior, $12.00 Children under 17 years old

For information or to reserve tickets, please call the Shawnee Playhouse Box Office at (570) 421-5093. For more information on show dates, times, and to purchase tickets online, please visit their website at

The Shawnee Playhouse is located at 552 River Rd., Shawnee on Delaware, PA 18356

A Good Day’s website:

To contact the writer/composer, or for questions about the work itself or its future development, contact Eric Sirota at [email protected]

Eric B. Sirota
A Good Day (musical)
[email protected]
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