The Othello Falling benefit is an effort to support victims of abuse, both through artistic catharsis, and by
donating all proceeds from works created for this project to an organization called Community Action
Stops Abuse (CASA).

I've always believed that writers, artists, and other creative people have a unique opportunity to bring
forms of awareness and illumination into some of the dark places that exist in life -- more than an
opportunity, a responsibility. We can give shape and form to human moments of pain and growth and
change and understanding.

This ideal took shape for me in a project I organized in 2006, called "Poets Against Abuse". I invited an
international community of over forty poets, both renowned and unknown, to join me in creating an
anthology speaking out against abuse, using whatever words captured best our desire to share our
caring. The book we published, called
Nox: Dark Poets Against Abuse, was also a benefit, with all profits
gained from its sale donated to support safe havens and programs for women and children struggling to
be free from abusive environments in their lives.The book was inspired by the works of another literary
figure who has always brought a keen sense of truth and responsibility to his writings: Don McGregor. In
particular the collaboration he did with the late Gene Colan called
A Terror of Dying Dreams. The Nox
Anthology, along with "Othello Falling", are both dedicated to those men, as well as all the men and
women who labor without fanfare to help those around them who are afraid, who are lonely, who are not
safe.

On the pages that follow you will find a series of recitations in the form of a poetic play, exploring that
most tragic of Shakespearean couples. The poems presented will be read aloud by myself in the role of
Othello, and I am proud to welcome the gifted and generous Jaeda DeWalt, reading the role of
Desdemona. In the personas of these characters we will try to explore the troubled passions and fears,
the jealousies and doubts that can give rise to violence in couples, with the goal of illuminating those
things so that they may be understood; so that they may have a chance for healing.

I hope you enjoy what we have created. If you are in need of support yourself in an unsafe relationship
or home, please feel free to explore the
links to resources for fighting abuse that I have posted on the
Shakespeare Online to Fight Abuse Directory Page.

Thank you for joining us to read and listen. Together, we are unstoppable in the dream of a world where
cruelty has no power, and caring is transcendent.

R. Paul Sardanas, August, 2011

Click on any link below to listen to the performance, or to explore the resources and people behind this
benefit.

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Introduction -
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Production Diary -
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The Players: Jaeda DeWalt and R. Paul Sardanas -
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Act One, Scene One: Othello ("I am fire and muscle...") -
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Act One, Scene One: Desdemona ("Time has stopped...") -
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Act One, Scene Two: Othello ("Surely I have conquered much...") -
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Act One, Scene Two: Desdemona ("I need no ring...") -
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Act One, Scene Three: Othello ("How untame she is...") -
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Act One, Scene Three: Desdemona ("The body yields up in spirit...") -
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Act Two, Scene One: Desdemona ("Now the world sets itself against us...") -
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Act Two, Scene One: Othello ("How can I doubt...") -
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Act Two, Scene Two: Desdemona ("We are to leave Venice!") -
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Act Two, Scene Two: Othello ("So war comes calling...") -
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Act Two, Scene Three: Desdemona ("The darkness that broods upon the horizon...") -
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Act Two, Scene Three: Othello ("Heaven is raging...") -
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Act Three, Scene One: Desdemona ("How can this have happened?") -
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Act Three, Scene One: Othello ("In the hour after midnight...") -
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Act Three, Scene Two: Desdemona ("I do not know...") -
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Act Three, Scene Two: Othello ("She is strange...") -
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Act Three, Scene Three: Desdemona ("I must not let the past cloud the present...") -
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Act Three, Scene Three: Othello ("Oh, beware of jealousy! It is the green-eyed monster...") -
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Act Four, Scene One: Othello ("As I go down from the citadel...") -
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Act Four, Scene One: Desdemona ("What madness has seized upon my husband?") -
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Act Four, Scene Two: Othello ("If I give my wife a handkerchief...") -
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Act Four, Scene Two: Desdemona ("My lord is not my lord...") -
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Act Four, Scene Three: Othello ("What will Desdemona do?") -
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Act Four, Scene Three: Desdemona ("I was ready to be a warrior's woman...") -
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Act Five, Scene One: Desdemona ("How foolish are our minds...") -
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Act Five, Scene One: Othello ("It is the cause...") -
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Act Five, Scene Two: Desdemona ("I dreamed an angel...") -
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Act Five, Scene Two: Othello ("I, that am cruel...") -
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Act Five, Scene Three: Desdemona ("...Farewell. Oh, Farewell.") -
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Act Five, Scene Three: Othello ("...to die upon a kiss.") -
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Afterword by R. Paul Sardanas -


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Click
HERE to view a listing of Domestic Violence Resources

Click
HERE to visit the online benefit "Nox: Dark Poets Against Abuse"

Click
HERE to view more of the works of Jaeda DeWalt

Click
HERE to visit the purchase page for the OTHELLO FALLING Benefit Book. All proceeds from
sales will be donated to Community Action Stops Abuse.
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Return to the Shakespeare Online to Fight Abuse  Directory
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