Bay Street Players' two-person play 'The Guys' acknowledges unimaginable tragedy of 9-11

EUSTIS — Who can forget the horror they felt Sept. 11, 2001? Because many people would like to mark the day in a meaningful way, the Bay Street Players will present "The Guys," a two-person performance about regular people in irregular times.

The play will be performed once, at 8 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 11.

In the aftermath of the attacks, Nick, a fire captain who has lost eight of his 12 men, must deliver eulogies that stay close to the mens' truths and humanity.

A journalist and editor, Joan, volunteers to help him shape the stories of the men's daily lives at the firehouse while both are finding their ways through the unimaginable tragedy.

"9-11 is difficult to acknowledge," Bay Street creative consultant Joel Warren said. "This play, a wonderful piece of theater, is very respectful but the performance is more about the day and the community. It's part of our new initiative that someone has to step in and make the arts relevant, not just entertainment."

To this end, the theater's management will donate half of the proceeds to Camp Boggy Creek in the name of the Eustis Fire Department and fire Chief Rex Winn.

William McCoy plays Nick.

"The author said that these men thought they had the best jobs in the world," McCoy said. "But maybe we say that this is the only job we can see ourselves doing, the job we were born to do."

Dina Pancoast Paulin plays Joan, the play's author Anne Nelson's alter ego. Nelson based the play on her real-life experience.

Patrick Ward, who directs, located the play's value in the feelings that arise between the two characters.

"They find comfort in friendship and in an emerging caring and love for each other," Ward said.

Tickets are $15 and can be purchased at the theater's box office, 109 N. Bay St.

For reservations or for more information, call 352-357-7777.

9-11 ceremonies

Lake County residents can honor the victims of 9-11 during a pair of ceremonies Wednesday, the 12th anniversary of the terrorist attacks.

•In Clermont, a ceremony will be held at 9 a.m. at Clermont Fire Station No. 1, 439 W. State Road 50. Speakers will be police Chief Chuck Broadway, who as a New York City police officer on 9-11 responded to ground zero and later helped with search-and-recovery efforts, and Kings Ridge resident Bob Peraza, whose son Robert David Peraza was killed in the North Tower collapse.

•In Tavares, a ceremony will be held at 9 a.m. at the Lake Technical Center's Fire Academy/Institute of Public Safety, 1565 Lane Park Cutoff. Jason Marquez, president and CEO of First Response Training Group in Orlando, will be the speaker. He worked as a paramedic with the New York Fire Department and responded to the attacks at the Twin Towers. There will be a reading of the names of firefighters who died on 9-11 as well as a color guard and bagpipers.

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