Lucy Roucis | Breakout Session
Female and disabled. What does that mean in the theatre? Join this discussion led by female actors with disabilities about the current theatre career opportunities available and the aspirations to move the whole industry forward towards equality and inclusion. Led by actors that have been in the industry for years, this discussion aims to recognize the changes that are already initiated within the theatre community and explore the horizon of what needs to be done to ensure the possibility of being hired to work as an actor.
A spunky, adventurous actress and model taking Los Angeles by storm, Lucy Roucis was cut to the quick when she was diagnosed with young-onset Parkinson's disease in 1987. Slowly it became harder and harder to do ordinary activities and she thought her career was over. A friend told her, "Turn this Parkinson's around and make it work for you. Use it." Never forgetting this, she moved back to Denver where she discovered Phamaly Theatre Company, an acting troupe comprised of people with all kinds of disabilities. In this venue, her Parkinson's is actually an asset and she has stared in several shows. Then Hollywood came calling. A role for a stand-up comedienne with real Parkinson's (as opposed to the movie kind!) in a major motion picture was up for grabs and she got the part, shaking alongside Anne Hathaway and Jake Gyllenhaal in Love and Other Drugs. Lucy also teaches acting and does motivational speaking engagements as well as stand up comedy. In 2008 she received deep brain stimulants (DBS) to ease her symptoms and is enjoying her newfound freedom.