Anyone who has lived at least six months in Santa Barbara knows theater is us, and I happened upon the best theater show Santa Barbara has yet to offer this year. The material was subjective, raw, and heartfelt, and pealed the truest bell yet over this city.

The Santa Barbara Gang Task Force held a meeting open to the public at the Faulkner Gallery this Wednesday afternoon. I was delighted to be entertained and touched deeply by the gut-wrenching stories the youth of our city were brave enough to tell and brilliantly re-enact. The young players were trained at Los Prietos under the artistic direction of Theater Director Ms. Billy Joe. I was so proud of them. They had the power and love of a thousands suns. They have dreams. Big ones. College, family, charities, volunteering, and spreading love.

If you ever have a chance, go to a Gang Task Force meeting. These kids will blow your mind. I grew up in this town, and yet their stories tell a side I never knew of the place I claim to call home. I felt honored and privileged to be a member of their audience. Thanks to Helene Schneider for being a terrific moderator. And here’s to you, our brilliant players!


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