Want to Die Laughing? This Musical About Hospice Will Certainly Help

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Want to Die Laughing? This Musical About Hospice Will Certainly Help With Benjamin Kintisch

In the U.S. discussions surrounding death are avoided at all costs. Life Review The Musical gives us permission to feel a wide range of emotions from sadness to trepidation to acceptance to even humor. This musical combines storytelling and music chronicling the journey of hospice patients and caregivers. Open a dialogue with your loved ones. A must see!

About Ben

Benjamin Kintisch is a Cantor, a chaplain and a music teacher, in addition to his involvement with theater and songwriting. “Life Review” is the first musical he has created.

He has loved singing and performing on stage since his youth. He graduated Brown University, with concentration in Judaic Studies. Graduate studies at Jewish Theological Seminary included a Masters in Sacred Music along with a Cantorial degree. Ben recently completed his fourth year of chaplaincy training, having served in several hospice and eldercare facilities.

He currently lives in Columbia, MD with his wife, daughter, and dog.

www.lifereviewmusical.com

www.ageucational.com

Full Transcript Below

Want to Die Laughing? This Musical About Hospice Will Certainly Help with Benjamin Kintisch

00:00:13 Roy Hello and welcome to educational. I'm your host, Roy Terry. We are the podcasts that, we are chronicling my aging through journey. My journey through aging, of course, Terry is timeless and it hasn't aged a day in the last 10 years. So, but anyway, and also our parents, both of our parents, are having, or at that point where we're needing more help and having to make decisions. That was why we started the show. We'd want to talk about our journey, but also we bring on professionals and guests from time today, we have an exciting guest and I'm going to let Terry introduce Benjamin.

00:00:51 Terry Ben Kintisch is a Cantor, a chaplain and a music teacher when he's not on stage. This is the first musical that he's created called life review. The hospice musical he's loved singing and performing since early elementary school. The journey from hospice chaplaincy to songwriting to musical theater stage has been an amazing inspiration life. Review the musical, the hospice musical, excuse me, is, it's a new musical celebrating life love and loss through three seasons at a residential hospital. The story follows the young rabbi, David, the new chaplain at the facility. He arrives in autumn eager and naive caring, but lonely as he ministers to the patients, rabbi David learns from his patients even as he cares for them and their loved ones. Ben, thank you so much for being on the show. We're so excited to have you here today.

00:01:51 Ben Thank you so much, Terry, for the lovely introduction and Roy, I love how you didn't even skip a beat. When you had your senior moment during your.

00:02:02 Ben & Terry Introduction about podcasts, I just smiled. You smiled. We got to put it all out there, right?

00:02:10 Ben That's a hundred percent real on educational, right? That's right. Excited to be with you and all of your listeners. I.

00:02:16 Terry Just like to hear him say that I'm not aging at all.

00:02:21 Ben Yeah. I know some of you are listening and some of you are watching. Those of you who are watching saw me give the.

00:02:28 Roy Nice move dude. Right? She's not within arms length, but she could still hit me if she threw something. So.

00:02:35 Ben It's nice to be. I always tell people it's a good idea to be nice to your loved ones, especially if you co-habit.

00:02:41 Roy That's right. Exactly. Well, we've been excited about this for quite some time. I think, stumbled across the, review on, Instagram. When I was telling Terry about it was just, both of us have been so excited and then, it's taken us a while to get this date. We thank you for, staying with us, being persistent, getting on here. We are looking so forward because this is a, it's a tough time in life for the individual going through the hospice and then also for their family. I think that's kind of, two fold with this episode. It's not only going to be very entertaining with you talking about, your journey, how you got here in the musical, in, the, behind the scenes of the musical, but also performing a couple notes, couple tunes from the musical itself. Just that lesson of how we can kind of tie all this together to maybe make somebody's life easier.

00:03:40 Ben Absolutely. Roy, you summed it up beautifully. This is a time, this pandemic time of tremendous loss and tremendous grief, related to this pandemic specifically, we've seen a startling amount of deaths, especially among those 65 and older, let's just name it, right? So if you are an older person, statistically speaking, you've been touched by COVID or someone, has, or at the very least a neighbor or friend or coworker. If you're lucky enough to not have had an actual loss like mortality in your network of friends and family, maybe you've suffered losses related to the whole world shutting down. I was laughing with Ryan Terry before we started taping about how I'm a middle school teacher. I'm doing this strange thing of teaching hybrid, learning through a computer screen. There are kids all across America around the world whose school year has been canceled or changed right now.

00:04:41 Ben That's not as heartbreaking perhaps as losing a loved one, like someone dying, but that's a grief, right? I worked with some teens at my synagogue, who were like the drama kids and they were excited for senior year when they would finally get their chance to be a star musical was canceled last spring. Yeah. So, and I can relate because my project, as we will discuss has hit some peaks and valleys and the valleys are mostly COVID related, but we all have our grief right now for those we've lost. The experience is we've lost. The places we can't go to. The theme of grief, which is so huge in this musical project is very much of the moment. And, and as you said, I, I hope to be able to help people move through that grief journey, whatever that grief journey is for them. Yeah.

00:05:34 Roy Well, that's awesome. Why don't you tell us first off, I know you have a lot of experience in the hospice sector. That's kinda, where, laugh review came out of. Why don't you tell us about how you found yourself here?

00:05:50 Ben Do you mean the, how did I write a musical about hospice or how did I find Roy and Terry? Yeah. Oh, I know.

00:05:55 Roy Yeah. Well you could that story. That's an interest now. I just meant like, your experience of your life prior to the musical and kind of what led up into the musical itself.

00:06:06 Ben Okay. So I'll try my best mean. I'm trying to make this very long story shorter, because it's been approximately six years. If I don't compress the story, you're going to have a hard time with the bandwidth and the length of the interview. So the musical began with songs. The songs began with stories. The stories were mostly inspired by real life experiences I had as a beginner chaplain, visiting patients and their loved ones in a residential hospice. It was my first year of being a chaplain. That part is from the play is semi-autobiographical to be sure though, in real life, I'm a Cantor. The character is a rabbi, but the idea of being new at a job in general, we can all relate to. For me, the specific story was being a new hospice chaplain. Well, so there's this thing in hospice called life review. It's a term that I borrowed from the clinical world to use as the name of the play.

00:07:13 Ben What it is you sit down with someone and you ask them questions that encourage them to tell the story of their life. I think I'll probably sing that song when we're ready for it, because it's the title track of the show. It's kind of an interesting moment for the audience because they can kind of experience what's it like to visit with a chaplain and tell their story. Anyway, these stories, these life reviews stories that happened bedside were so moving to me one night, I called my wife and I said, honey, these stories are amazing. I think they want to be songs. She replied without missing a beat get writing. That night I started writing and, one of these old, black and white journal books. And, that became the first ballad for the show. Will it still snow when I'm gone? Oh, wow. Interesting. Oh my gosh.

00:08:08 Roy Yeah. That must have been a, that must have been like being thrown off in the deep end to kind of have that as your first assignment. I mean, cause it's just for most, it's a ma it's emotionally draining and I just, I don't know. Let's kinda like, hello, welcome to priesthood, I guess. Yes, you weren't correct.

00:08:27 Ben That out of all of the choices, one could pick for chaplaincy for first year training, hospice is a particularly intense choice. One could say the same is true for a lot of other hot, chaplain jobs. I mean, there are chaplains who did their first year in military service. There are some who do ER, hospital wings. I mean, like there are very few chaplain jobs that don't involve a whole lot of heartbreak because the chaplain's job for those of you listening, if you didn't know chaplain's job, he was a of faith who ministers to the sick, seriously injured, ill dying, and their loved ones or more broadly people dealing with real life struggle. They want help from a faith professional. Right? That's what a clergy person is. Most folks who are approximately your generation are a bit older. They discovered what a chaplain is from watching mash so that the young priest on mash, yes, he's the chaplain, right?

00:09:22 Ben If you've ever been to a hospital with a loved one, when, if they were admitted for more than 24 hours, chances are they had something like on a clipboard, do you want to visit from the chaplain? And if you say yes, if it's a big hospital, you can pick your preference. Catholic Protestant Jewish in New York city, you get the choice of Jewish, the rest of the country. You might not have that choice, but, that's the experience a lot of people have with hospital chaplains. I actually had that experience myself some years ago. I have for viewers who are watching, you can barely see the scar cause I had a great surgeon, but I wrecked my elbow six, seven, eight years ago before the hospice chaplaincy began. I had the experience of being hospitalized for three or four days while I waited a major surgery on my arm.

00:10:08 Ben It was not life-threatening, but it was horrible. Let me put it out there that for anyone who has been hospitalized and all of your listeners, if they're of a certain age, chances are, they've had at least one or two visits to the hospital. You know it right. It is horrible. Whether you're in there for a heart attack or a heart procedure or cancer, or even something as not that bad as a erect elbow to spend the night in an uncomfortable bed, away from your loved ones. If you're dealing with surgery, which is inherently frightening to most people more. If you have anxiety about medical procedures, your guests pointing to himself, it's difficult to be hospitalized. I had two different wonderful chaplains. This was at New York Presbyterian and upper Manhattan, both Jewish chaplains. Cause I checked that box and one of them named my pain.

00:11:00 Ben She heard all of this stuff and she heard me minimizing, oh, at least I didn't get killed like Sonny bono. He had a ski accident and it's only my elbow. She said, but Ben, you also told me that you're going to be out of work for a few months. You told me that you're frightened and you told me you're in pain. And you told me you're facing disability. The loss of use of your arm for several months. She's like, that's a lot of loss right there. Ben, that's a lot of hurt. That was classic chaplain skill to hear the person's story and then acknowledge their pain. The other guy was a little more traditional, did some songs in Psalms with me. That was also moving, like to have someone pray with me. That thing that first chaplain did is what rabbi David needs to learn in his journey instead offering teachings or sermons to invite questions and storytelling from the person in the bed, we call it in chaplain training, making space or making sacred space.

00:12:04 Ben You actually pull back I'm doing it on camera for all of your viewers and you give the person in the bed or the person who's sitting in a chair who's crying space to have that feeling. As my wonderful trainer rabbi, Jim Michaels used to say, you need to go down to the basement with them. And that can be spooky. That can be dark returning to your original question. Hospice is that intense? Sure. Because the basement for people who are dying is to sit with them during their dying days or to sit with their loved ones after they have just died, where during those moments, when they leave this plane and enter another, that is admittedly emotionally intense. That's part of the drama of our young hero, rabbi David's, journey and training. That dramatizes something that we all need to go through, in our lives, right?

00:13:02 Ben Our own mortality, our own particular and individual journeys of grief, as we deal with the passing of the generations, people sometimes they're surprised. They're like, oh Ben, you're so young. Why are you writing a musical about death and dying? It's so dark. It's like, well, when I was in elementary school, I went to my first funeral and my grandma died in middle school. I went to the second funeral and my grandpa died in college. I lost my first friend w it was a beloved boss who dropped out of a heart attack. In my twenties, my first college friend, as in first pier died sadly by suicide. In my thirties, I lost a friend, who had muscular dystrophy and he had outlived his life expectancy. So none of those losses wrecked me. They were all difficult. Thank God. My parents are still alive and well as are my wife's parents, but there will be a time when we have to bury all four of them.

00:14:05 Ben At a certain point I will have to bury my spouse or she will bury me if God willing. We're still married when were Olin and gray. Wherever we are, whatever agent's stage we're in now, we are all approaching that difficult thing known as our own mortality, our own death, our end of life. That is super hard, but it's also important to like just accepted, maybe laugh about it. And, maybe that's part of my educational mission. I know you guys have yours about kind of enlightened healthy aging. I think acknowledging mortality, which is admittedly the finish line. To speak for this race called life. I'm acknowledging that is an ending, I think is healthy. That's part of what the different people in the play all go through, whether they're in the bed, whether the plus one, the loved one, holding hands with the person in the bed or this guy that chaplain watching it all unfold.

00:15:06 Terry It's such a hard, it's just such a hard topic to discuss, for all of those four, for the reasons of, you don't want to address your own mortality. You don't want to know about the people, whoever you're addressing, you don't want their mortality to be in question. I mean, it's going to happen. Why not sing about it? You know?

00:15:36 Ben Absolutely. You're nodding and the two of you, I think, based on your profession, podcasters, you have these conversations probably more than many of your peers, but I am guessing that, I'm not rude enough to ask how old you are, but I'm guessing some of your peers still have both parents alive and many have already lost one or two. Yeah.

00:16:00 Roy Yeah. I'm not going to speak for her, but I will say that, at my age, we, the last couple of years, it started to lose a lot more people, who I went to school with, which, it can be a very rude awakening that, it's gotten to be fairly constant, but I'm lucky enough. Both of my parents are still living. Terry's one of her mother's still living. So, yeah, but I was going to say, I'm kinda like you, that I was brought up going to funerals and that my parents took us. And, they didn't, there was nothing weird. They don't, they don't make you like go up and touch them or view them or whatever. You were just there surrounded that this is part of life. It doesn't make it any easier. There is, I have seen people that, they didn't go to their first funeral till they were in their twenties or thirties.

00:16:55 Roy It was a very difficult experience, but it's just part of life. I don't, I haven't met anybody yet. That's been able to beat it and, avoid it. So it's coming. It's not a pleasant thing. The other thing that ties into this story or ties into our educational is, having these conversations and not waiting until it's too late to ask these questions. I like what you were talking about, get them to tell their story because we encourage that it's family members, we should be talk don't and just this morning we did a taping and were just saying, it's never too, you're never too young to start that conversation. Like my parents, like, what were your grandparents like something I've never asked. I knew, couple of them, very little, when I was small, they were alive. Anyway, and so having these conversations about who they are, the other thing I like that you talk about is as the chaplain, you getting to know the person, because so many times as, healthcare workers that deal with the aging, the person becomes the affliction.

00:18:05 Roy It's just, oh, that person that's got, heart failure in room three or whatever. It's like, no, this person was some, they are somebody, they had a life, they had a career family, they had all this stuff, but not, I had a nursing home resident. Tell me once that, I've been reduced to the lady that's incontinent and room three. I think letting people talk about that is it's really good.

00:18:32 Ben All right. I love that last story. In the field of education, we talk a lot about people, first language, it's important. For instance, if you have a child with special needs, you don't say that's a special ed kid. You say it's a child with special learning needs, right. It takes a few more syllables. The point is that the child is not defined by his or her learning disability. Similarly, if someone is elderly and they, it's nicer. I think more respectful to say, this is an older adult or just an adult, right? Like if their age is important, we can mention it. We don't have to hide it. If it's just, he's an old man, she's an old lady and the age is the defining and limiting characteristic. That's not so nice. Similarly with disease. Yes, all of us are carrying some affliction. Even if you are in perfect health, you're still busy dying.

00:19:30 Ben It's part of the natural attrition, or I'm sorry, atrophy of living organisms, book plug being mortal by a tool Gawande, amazing book. One of the things that he teaches is that all living things are born. They grow, they live and they die similar wisdom in the Robert Faldo classic. All I needed to know, I learned in kindergarten where he talks about how five-year-olds know, because they've planted a seed in kindergarten class that the seed, if cared for, will grow and get a tall. At a certain point it'll fall over and then it will die. Five-year-olds can handle that lesson of mortality. Something happens as we approach the peak of our prime, our twenties, thirties, forties, et cetera, where we're like super invincible and young and sexy and strong. It, at that point, we can't even fathom death and dying. It's why one of my characters early in the play who dies a younger man, it's like particularly heartbreaking because he's not supposed to be dying when the older people die.

00:20:39 Ben Maybe there's a different intensity of heartbreak because it's like life expectancy and so forth. It's that ending to quote my song. It's coming for all of us. In fact, I'm not sure Roy, if you want me to begin with something lively and funny or something inspirational, what are you feeling right here? Because if it's everyone dies, I've got a good one.

00:21:04 Speaker 5 Yeah, no, that's perfect. That's perfect. Let's do that though. Yeah. So.

00:21:08 Ben This is the winning number from the play it's called spoiler alert. I wrote the lyrics, music by Andy Boscov. This is a classic Broadway comedy number and we wrote it. The concept came from my buddy, Jason SPE wack. Who's one of the other composers. We were sitting around brainstorming and he said, yeah, man, people are going to be stressed. They're going to be nervous about this. Play about all the dying. He's like, we need a good comedy number to break the ice. We're brainstorming and he's like, I know everybody dies. I said, everybody dies in the end. It's like, that's the hook? So that's the punchline. I already ruined.

00:21:48 Speaker 5 It. It's called. And I hope you enjoy it.

00:22:00 Speaker 0 We don't mean to be a bummer, but we've got some awful news. Hey, it gets colder after some, her, and even when, or as Lou Robert Frost composed one fine day in a most poetic way, he wrote nothing. That's what he said. Now he's dead because spoiler alert and three buddy dies in the end. Sorry to ruin the play. My friend love him or hate 'em. This cannot band. Everybody dies in the end. We don't win. We got to go. You hear every single person, my dear, the neighborly, Ned, who you, justice, spies, you trust where they frightened the guy. Who's the sister never sinned in her life. Your father, your mother, your husband, or wife, the hero out in the feeling of each tall tower. The Salar who battled up every body does need. There we go. Sorry to ruin the play. My friend love him or hate him.

00:23:22 Speaker 0 I'm this kind of panned. Everybody ties in the it's the truth, Ruth. It's sad, flat. It ain't pretty kitty, but it's real committed. Now it's common for all of us. No matter how you feel, no matter your name or party or game, it's the same. It's that man was gentle and noble and smart lady woke. Cause the world was her art. The boy who lived with the baboons heart, they all leave the stage. When they're done with that part, I Kurt, we will do our thing. You hope you don't cry. Every time we sing, whether you're married or you got no ring, the lowliest popper, the last year's king, we all got it. We just sing and sorry to ruin the play. My friend Nava on her head on this cat on pad, everybody dies in the end.

00:24:47 Ben & Terry Oh, that was great. Great. I loved that. You,

00:24:54 Ben By the way, there is a kick line in the final version.

00:25:01 Roy That the, I guess this is the shortest play ever. We open seeing the song it's over drop the curtain.

00:25:07 Speaker 5 It's got the night.

00:25:10 Ben That is, when presented IRL in real life as a kid say that is an ensemble number. The, the rabbi character is the main narrator doing most of that, but it is written as an ensemble number with all the characters, doing a few punchlines. That way we can get a group kick line because you don't know who it is. Through the magic of theater, all of our elderly and seriously old patients can sing beautifully and dance. That's part of the fun of suspending disbelief. And we get to do that again. Again, I tell folks it's like across between Fiddler on the roof and a chorus line Fiddler on the roof, because it's very Jewish, a lot of talking to God and that dialectical, as we say, and chorus line, because you hear these songs that are almost like monologues set to music. You have Stalla who remembers skiing in the mountains with her kids, and dreams of snow as she's fading away, you have Leroy, a former church musician, who remembers the pride of using his body to make music, to protest, to stand up for what was right.

00:26:22 Ben We have, Murray who, as he faces his desk, he just wants to make friends. He's like that guy who's friendly with everyone. He has kind of a uptempo Frank Sinatra kind of song called my last day on earth. He's like, I'll make a new friend. Everyone faces their ending in different ways. That's the way it's like chorus line. I invite all of the listeners and viewers to think about who do you think you might be in hospice care or an end of life care? Well, imagine the Broadway version of the scene, right? Cause realistically, a lot of folks who die are not dancing and singing and cracking jokes the way my characters are. Do you imagine you might be someone who's making new friends as you're hospitalized or in a hospice, do you imagine you're someone who would be prayerful and having a serene, experience full of gratitude, like Leroy, do you think you might be dealing with fear or regret like Stella? do you think you might be wrestling with God and a little angry about losses? Like our rabbi character goes through, those are all, emotions that are part of a very big range of intense emotions that we experience as we deal with mortality.

00:27:47 Ben You, you were spot on before Roy, when you asked oh, chaplaincy that's, chaplaincy in hospice. That's intense. The question behind the question is like, how do you deal with all that dying? That's kind of one of the first big questions our young Euro asks. He's like, I'm ready for this job except all the dying. And it's like, oops. The reassuring thing comes from the nurse has his soon to be friend, nurse Marie who teaches the philosophy of hospice and says that, the joke is, yeah, it's a hospice, lots of dying. Ain't no avoiding that, but Dan's not so bad. Lots of people die here. They turn out fine. You know, rabbi. I just hope when I die, I get treated this nice. Honestly, when I think about my experiences working as a chaplain at this hospice, the real one that inspired the musical and the mid-cycle one on stage, it brings a smile to my face.

00:28:51 Ben People are surprised that I can laugh and joke about hospice, that I have happy memories there. It's because we bring these amazing stories up. We, we create moments of family unity, sometimes reconciliation, sometimes not, but, unfortunately hospitals are not typically designed for moments of home-like connection. There's some hospitals that have been tweaking around the edges, but like, let's be realistic. Hospitals are not designed to be home like environments, perhaps nursing homes try to bridge that gap between a home-like environment and medicalization. If you think about the person who dies in a hospital with all kinds of tubes and beeps to most people, that doesn't feel all that home, like doesn't feel all that natural. It's often very upsetting visually and often doesn't smell nice or sound nice. Hospice care is not, a panacea. It's not actually for everyone because you need to qualify in certain kinds of ways, as in seriously, ill not likely to recover in six months or fewer than you can talk with two doctors to qualify you for hospice care.

00:30:10 Ben If you elect for that for you and your family, or please have this conversation today with your loved one, right, guys, talk about your final wishes. Talk about the plan of care and who is your, power of attorney. If God forbid you and your spouse were to get hurt or sick at the same time, those are conversations have today, not in the hospital folks fighting inside of hospice folks. Yeah. That's one of my teaching moments for you.

00:30:38 Speaker 5 Please have that conversation.

00:30:41 Ben If you don't, the important decisions will be made by people who might not be able to ask you a question, God forbid whoever's listening. If you were incapacitated tomorrow, some jerk on the road, does something dangerous and bumps into your car. If you're hospitalized tomorrow, do your loved ones know your wishes? If the answer is no, I lovingly encourage you to, seek out resources. I know Ryan Terry do a great job of educating all the listeners, have that conversation with your loved one about yup. Your end of life wishes. I have a will, even though I'm 40, if you're 40 or 50 or 60 or 30 or 20, you should have a, will. The only reason you shouldn't have a, well, maybe if you're less than 18 and you only have like a hundred bucks and some bubblegum or something, the kids have bubble gum.

00:31:37 Ben No, but seriously, anyone who is a legal adult should have a will. They should have advanced directives that deal with medical care. Right. I've seen up close and personal, and it's horrible when loved ones are fighting over care because they ha they don't know anyway, stepping off. Yeah,

00:31:53 Roy No, you're right. You're right about that. Because every, siblings all think that they know what mom or dad wanted in the reality is a lot of times nobody's ever talked to mom and dad. So thank you for that PSA. That's awesome. I've been doing a lot of talking about that, but I think that the other thing that's kind of a curious about this, about the play and hospice is, hospice was designed is we're never going to enjoy dying. I get that, but hospice was designed to make end of life more pleasurable to say, no more as much as we can, no more tubes, no more fighting, no more, whatever these treatments and all, it's a place just to make the individual comfortable and to live out their life as best as possible, with them in a family surrounded. It's, I think it's interesting that, you do bring these stories to life and, we add a little humor to it.

00:32:53 Roy I, I think that actually fits in very well.

00:32:57 Ben Fantastic. Yeah. Since, since we're talking for about what hospice is, if there's a song that could be like, cut it, cut and put into like a PSA for why you hospice, it's this one it's called live until you die. It's inspired by some of the writings of Dame, Cicely Saunders. She was the British nurse who in England started what we now think of as the modern hospice movement. She was, this was after world war two when based on medical advances, a lot of things that previously would kill soldiers, they were surviving them. Now there was this new medical problem of end of life. That was prolonged. It's kind of a funny thing when we think about it, but it is a modern miracle that it takes so long to die. In olden times when life expectancy was shorter, if you were a young man and you were, I mean, let me take a grizzly example, civil war.

00:33:56 Ben If you were shot in the leg, there was a good chance you would die because you would get gangrene and the infection would spread and not to be gross for all the listeners, but like a lot of things are now like, oh, you would just get a field dressing. Medivaced, in a helicopter would take you away. Like there are all kinds of reasons why soldiers and now the general public live longer and that, okay, that's the short version of how hospice started look up on Wikipedia. I did some reading on Cicely Saunders and her philosophy behind the hospice care. I wrote this song it's called live until you die. I wrote the words and the music is by Jason SPE whack. I'll do a portion of it. Okay. This is performed by the nurse.

00:34:51 Speaker 0 I will do all I can and share them. Oh, man, laugh with you and cry till the mall. Oh man. Hi. Even when you're done, you are even though I knew, bro, can you are who, oh, I will walk with you. Who as you're on your way. Hey, I will talk with you. You have yours sitting by side until the final. I am here for you to live until you die. Live until you. Oh, that's awesome.

00:36:21 Roy Thanks for performing that. We appreciate that. So, just a minute, I know that, you got this written wrapping it all up and then the pandemic hit. And so,

00:36:36 Speaker 5 Yeah, I haven't.

00:36:39 Roy Yeah. So, I know that you've performed this for some virtual audiences and probably for some local audiences they're, close to you. What has the reception been like from old and young?

00:36:52 Ben Thanks for asking Roy and acknowledging my particular grief of this project though. It's not dead virtual tour, 2021, including an appearance on age educational podcasts.

00:37:06 Speaker 5 And Terry,

00:37:07 Ben Thank you. Did I say it wrong? Loz?

00:37:09 Speaker 5 That's my, let's see. Let's see. Okay. One of us are Italian. Yes.

00:37:18 Ben Being on this podcast is part of the virtual tour, 2021. Yes, we are all virtual right now because of the dastardly Corona virus. However, there is hope I've got two shots in my arm and I do hope, as a public school teacher, I got to jump to the front of the line. It seems like my target audience is 50 plus. A lot of them have shots, right. Even before we do the in-person live theater and all joking aside, I will not do any live performances until I am convinced as long as my creative team, that it is safe to do theater inside, but there are a lot of exciting opportunities right now for live theater and live music in this virtual environment. Right. Yes, Roy, I have done some live appearances, the main, I guess you could call it product or performance that we, the life of your team are bringing to the world right now is called life review stories and songs.

00:38:18 Ben It is a virtual cabaret that has eight songs as well as narration and stories in between. It's a nice tight entertaining. 45 minutes was a 15 minute Q and a to follow I've presented that to a large synagogue as well as one of the biggest, elder care facilities in the Baltimore Washington region. That was an interesting gig because they had it piped through the, a lot of elder care facilities. They have like their cable channel for announcements and stuff. There was my face on hundreds of TVs. That's exciting for people who can't get out of their institution at all, let alone go to live theater, for the synagogue performance and for other cultural institutions, happy to do that show. For an additional fee, we can add an educational segment to follow like, a brief musical lecture where we look closely at some of the songs.

00:39:19 Ben I can distribute copies of lyrics and we pull apart the meaning because there's a lot of juicy material in it. I have a program to talk about grief and loss to talk about end of life care. We have one about, faith issues for end of life care. One about family and generational issues. One about caring for the caregivers. I'm doing a presentation at a chaplaincy conference in a month, the same chaplaincy program where I did my final unit. So like the circle is completed. It's a real honor, shout out to Jeff Tio out in Arizona, but I'll be presenting this musical and then doing some discussions with the next generation of chaplains because we need to as care providers and you alluded to this earlier, we need to get comfortable with our own mortality. Maybe we need to laugh about some of the things that are funny, whether it's mortality or in the play, I've got this body number about sex and lusting after the care staff, which is a thing, male or female, the sex drive is alive and kicking whether or not we can do anything about it until our death.

00:40:35 Ben So, that's just a funny PG 13 song that's in there. Anyway, back to the tour, we are hoping to bring this in this cabaret virtual format for as many audiences as we can. I know I'm performing at my Senate. My boy had synagogue later in June. I'm hoping to make some conference appearances. So I encourage all of the listeners. If you've enjoyed this interview and some of the songs, please do check out light view musical.com and you can submit your information to get in touch with me. I'd love to meet you and hear about you and your organization or your community through the power of the internet. As long.

00:41:12 Speaker 5 As you have an internet connection, I can come to you.

00:41:15 Ben Right now. The exciting thing, there's this metaphor in the play. If you visit the musical website, you'll see our logo is a daffodil. In the opening scene, the young chaplain is planting bulbs and he reveals that those are in memory. He's planting flowers in of his deceased parents. He's a young man, but sadly he's lost both his parents, at the end of the place, six months later, it's spring and the daffodils are blooming mean. So I look out my window. I don't know, are the daffodils still blooming down in Texas, but in Maryland, the daffodils, they're still off. They're starting to fade a little, but I see that sign of hope and renewal. What does this have to do with the tour? Well, I'm happy to report that at least one synagogue I pitched on the virtual show. They were like, sounds too heavy for virtual, but how about we book you in a year for a live show? And I said, yes,

00:42:13 Speaker 5 I want to talk to me.

00:42:14 Ben About a live show in 2022 or 2023 calendar's wide open. I think that what's likely to happen is I'm going to be performing all over the country in this virtual environment. And it's like planting bulbs, right. Who knows, which might grow into a future in real life performance, which might just touch someone. Who's inspired to learn more perhaps to support the project. We are still in early development, but we have big dreams. If this conversation today inspired you or moved you, if you liked the music, please learn more. I would, I would be delighted to meet you personally and have a conversation. Oh, also Instagram at life review musical. That's how I found Brian. Terry.

00:42:59 Roy What is the, what has the reception been from, I know you haven't done a lot.

00:43:04 Ben Yeah. I did two workshops. One was a hundred people wondered about 250. So that's some audiences. The good news Roy is they usually laugh when they're supposed to. Sometimes they laugh at unexpected places, which is a funny thing about writing comedy. You never know, like if there's an unexpected punchline and then, they definitely cry when they're supposed to my wife teases me. When I, when I say like, oh man, they were all crying. She's like, are you happy about that? And I say, well, it's like, when you're a songwriter, if you can create a song that moves people to tears, you've created something of power. It's actually, one, it makes me remember the first time I shared one of my songs in public, it was that song about snow. That very first song I wrote, the melody was not even done yet. I was making up the melody on the spot.

00:43:58 Ben The words are like 75% done, but I had a venue. It was a songwriter's share at a Jewish education conference. Shout out to my dear friends who Horowitz, who led that workshop. I sang for about 20 people in a room. It was acapella. It was rather clumsy, but the words were meaningful to people and I'd say 15 or so people, men and women alike were crying openly when the song was done. And I said to myself, oh wow. I've, I've created something impactful here. Right after the class ended, Sue came up to me and she said, Ben, are there more songs? And I said, there are. She said, you needed to keep working on this. You've got, you've got an important project here. She gave me one piece of advice. She said, clearly how to write a sad song. You have to write some comedy songs and some romance songs and some shocking songs.

00:44:53 Ben Because if you write eight sad ballads before intermission, they won't return. For the second half, I've tried to follow that advice. You heard one of the comedy songs before there are a few others. I try to have a variety of musical styles. There's a gospel song and R and B song, several eighties sounding power balance. Cause that's when Michael Miller and Jason SPE wax seem to write, they're both like deepest Carol King, Billy Joel Elton. Oh yeah,

00:45:24 Speaker 5 Those guys. Yeah, my creative team. You can hear echoes from all three wonderful.

00:45:31 Ben Piano, heavy rockers that I just mentioned or songwriters. I mentioned, you know, it's been wonderful. I mean, I'm joking about the joking, but not joking about the laughing and the crying. Here's why Roy, there's a reason why there's this whole genre called gallows humor. Why is everyone making jokes around the gallows? Someone's going to die? It's because it's a very uncomfortable situation and I'm not even going to get on my soap box about capital punishment, by the way, I'm against it. That said, being in a place where death is like, so imminent is deeply uncomfortable. That's why people want to joke because it like diffuses the tension. It's why I had to make a comedy number to kick it off my musical about hospice. It's why the character rabbi David, the character who I play kind of, he's got that nebbishy nervous. Self-deprecating persona. That's a little Woody Allen.

00:46:35 Ben It's a little Tevya from Fiddler. It is a classic Jewish trope to make jokes in the face of deep pain and suffering. There's a whole, somewhat uncomfortable sub genre of Jewish humor about the Holocaust. Some people don't like it, but it's, I wouldn't recommend non Jews repeat those jokes, but Jews are allowed to, it's like insider humor. We all have our uncomfortable stuff. It's also why a lot of people like to joke about sex and joke about drugs and joke about politics. It's all these taboo subjects. Somehow we haven't learned how to have adult conversations around the uncomfortable, but yeah, many of us are okay with laughing about it. I, I try to use that to our benefit. That's why the two of you, I think, were laughing quite a bit during that funny song before the lyrics are clever, but like, what is the essential truth? It's not that funny.

00:47:35 Ben Everyone dies. Right. If I go to a lecture and I stay, everybody dies, whether you're rich or poor man, woman or child, you've already fallen asleep. That's so boring and it's kind of depressing, but a little jazz.

00:47:48 Speaker 5 Hands, a little comedy. And then it's.

00:47:51 Ben Like a spoonful of sugar makes the medicine go down to quote another good musical, not my lyric there.

00:47:57 Roy So, so besides, rabbi David, we're going to have to scratch him for a moment who is your favorite character that you've created?

00:48:07 Ben Oh, that's an easy one. Great question. And I haven't answered for you. He is probably the patient who gets the most airtime. He is the one who forms a deep and sweet connection with the rabbi. His backstory is inspired by a real life person. People always ask me like, are these real people? And I say, the stories are true. The details are changed to protect anonymity. Yeah. Anyone who was with me at center for hope, hospice would immediately know who this character was based upon. A real life gentlemen, who, I'll just say like Leroy is based upon a man who grew up in Bed-Stuy Brooklyn. Historically African-American neighborhood in the most populous borough of the nation's largest city. He and I connected in real life over that common, experience in Bed-Stuy. We actually have a funny dialogue moment where he says, I grew up in Bed-Stuy and I say, I used to live in bedside.

00:49:20 Ben He said, another young white guy who lives in Bedstein.

00:49:26 Speaker 5 Laugh about.

00:49:27 Ben Gentrification, but it's true. When I lived in Brooklyn, I was that white guy in bedside. Anyway, the man who Levi was based upon, and the Leroy character as well, he played church Oregon in a big black church. The real life person, he told me that he played for over 50 years. Wow. So he started as a teenager. He took his first piano lesson when he was 11. He first took over the junior choir in his neighborhood black church when he was 15. He first played the big service when he was 19. He played all the way until his sixties. Sadly, he suffered a stroke late in life where he lost the use of one hand. I kind of, I don't include all of those biographical details in fictionalized version of that person named Leroy, but he was a retired church musician and his song, the gospel song is all about being thankful for the body that he had.

00:50:28 Ben I, I imagine this might be one of those spots where even our non hospice people can relate. If any of your listeners happen to be older than they used to listen up. I'm guessing whatever age you are, if you're youngest 40, like me, or freakishly young, less than 40, what are you doing on this podcast? I'm just kidding. We love our young listeners, but if you're 50 or 60 or 70 or 80, or wow, you're 90 or holy moly or a hundred plus I didn't know, a hundred year olds can listen to podcasts, whatever age you are. I'm guessing there's something in your body that isn't working as it used to just at someone point, it was worked with some aging people of different ages. I'm just going to put that out there. I can say as a 40 year old, my body hurts in ways.

00:51:16 Ben It didn't when I was 20. I present as a young man, I've worked with a lot of geriatric patients who are 60, 70, 80, 90 it's part of aging, even when you're decades, God willing from the grave that our body changes and our body evolves. I'm guessing if you've spoken to doctors and social workers, this is a big theme. The, what I call the betrayal of the body, your, especially if you're lucky enough to be cognitively with it as Leroy was, or the real life lead, I was here and a lot of joy and a lot of stories and he could crack jokes and he could tease me about my inept guitar playing. We had so much fun together in real life. I think the fictionalized version of that character also reflects that love and that friendship, his song though, is meant to highlight that we can hold intention at the same time, the pain of, that betrayal of the body and his case, the loss of one hands.

00:52:20 Ben We couldn't make music. In my case, I'm 40, but I can't play rugby anymore because I had too many concussions and my back hurts. Maybe if you're 60 there's changes with who lives at home with you anymore, maybe you've switched from golf to tennis or tennis to pickle ball, or pickleball to wee bowling, depending on how your body is. Right. Like that's part of the aging process. Leroy in his song, he is like raising them as faithful people say, he raises up the holiness with these hands. I played for the Lord with these hands. I prayed with a cord. That couplet highlights the whole only experience it was of using his body to make music for God. On subsequent version, he stands up for what's right. He marches for justice and so forth. Our bodies break down, whatever agent's stage, we're at, there's this aspect of grief about we can't do the thing we used to.

00:53:24 Ben I rugby and that's a great 40 year olds lament, oh, I can't play rugby. Crimea, irregular grimy.

00:53:32 Speaker 5 Cry me a record. There's my senior moment.

00:53:36 Ben I'll tell you, I hung up my cleats. It was a real loss because I played for 10 years and I loved it. This is not the right podcast for it, but I'll tell you, it was an amazing experience. For me, that's like the quintessential youthful, Ben, I'm sure all of your listeners, you have something, right? Whether it was the time when your love life was hot and heavy, or you were a great athlete, or you thought you looked better than you ever did, or you were making most money or whatever is like you were youthful power moment. Eventually you age past that. You kind of have this nostalgia for what that was to you. I try to acknowledge that throughout the play, in a playful way. We talk about sex, when we talk about work, when we talk about travel, like those are things that kind of evolve as we age.

00:54:24 Ben That is difficult, but it is real. Now why is Leroy is such a great character in the play? He is the one who is yes, wise enough to help the rabbi get better at his craft. He also can match wits with him. They play this game where, how a lot of Christians are really good at quoting the Bible line and verse Jews are not that good at it. Fun fact, even clergy. Some Jews are good at quoting line and verse, but none of them are as good as their Christian brothers and sisters. It's just like something Christians are good at and also Muslims. So, Leroy figures that out and he's like, blah, dah. And, and the rabbi is like, and he turns around and Leroy is like, what are you doing fiddling with your phone? He's like, rabbi Google, it's a dumb, but it killed in the audience.

00:55:18 Ben The thing that he has though, so that he, and that he brings to him, it's friendship. It's perhaps a surrogate father or grandfather figure. That's not made totally clear, but we do come to learn that young rabbi David is missing the older generation. We all have those older people in our life, who after they die, let's be honest. They are often mythologized in a kind of way. I feel that way about my grandfather of blessed memory. I'll tell you, grandpa Bernie, my father's father was a man who I only knew until I was 12 because that's when he passed, but he was so beloved. He was a postal worker in New York city back before ups. The guys, they also did the parcel post, right. He knew everyone in a, a four square mile part of Rockaway. He knew hundreds of people and he knew when their birthdays were because then the gifts arrived.

00:56:23 Ben He knew about their births and marriages and divorces because he brought them the stuff. I think about him and I know he was a complicated man, but like for me, grandpa Bernie, the myth is just friend to the world and sweet, gentle soul. I think I might have written some aspects of grandpa Bernie into Leroy. I'm just, I'm actually making this insight live on camera with you too. I'd never made that connection before, but I think writers, playwrights songwriters, we always try to borrow from our life, without stealing. The title life, will it still snow when I'm gone is actually borrowed from a poem with permission by my mother-in-law. Her poem had to do with a woman imagining life after death in new England. I just took the conceit of the poem and wrote it into a big ballad for Leroy. I just imagined it had to be a gospel song because he was accompanying gospel his whole life.

00:57:28 Ben Which actually brings me to maybe the last musical offering at the end of the play. I'm not going to tell the whole story can get of a synopsis on the website, I think, or just book me, right? Yes. I will tell you this as spoiler alert indicated earlier yes, many of our characters die because that's what happens in hospice care, right? So the most dramatic, sad, difficult moment of the play is probably Leroy's death. We see it in front of us. I will give you a tiny introduction and serenade you and your listeners. Okay. Awesome. So rabbi David is getting ready. I'll just read the little intro. It's late in the day. It's late in the play before rabbi David heads to his car to drive home. He pops into Leroy's room for a quick visit. They talked together quieter than usual. After a few playful pleasantries, Leroy says rabbi I'm feeling tired.

00:58:35 Ben Rabbi David offers to play him a lullaby to help him fall asleep. Leroy nods, weekly and smiles, and most subtle of ways. Rabbi David sits near the bed and plays the following song.

00:58:55 Speaker 0 I'll stay right. He time to sing. Tuck you in far dream. So sweet. Having a way life's complete it's time to sing. I love about so sweet heaven away lights come well, that was beautiful band.

01:61:04 Terry Gosh, that's twice. You've got.

01:61:08 Speaker 5 To, you got one more. Do you cry two times two? How dare you?

01:61:17 Ben It was beautiful. I'm glad you found it. Beautiful. Can you tell me and the listeners, Terry, what was it about that song just now that brought tears to your eyes,

01:61:28 Terry Heaven waits for you. I mean, just, it was just all of the emotions together and then that were just all of it, everything, it was beautiful. It was, I just imagined myself.

01:61:46 Roy Calming. Sometimes it's like, we fight that death until, we had actually had a guest this morning that her mother waited till everybody got around. Then, she was easy passed on or, passed easily. I think a lot of times people that seem like they fight that till the very end and this is a message that, it's okay.

01:62:11 Terry Like you still have stuff to do, but just not here, really not here.

01:62:17 Ben Yeah. That's it interesting that the phrase that you said just now, Roy it's okay. I've experienced this many times in my travels as a hospice chaplain, both as a trainee. More recently, my final unit of training was in a what I call a circuit hospice here in Maryland. Shout out to just a hospice social service agency, hospice care. I traveled one day a week for a year. In addition to my job as a Cantor, I was a hospice canter, a hospice chaplain rather one day a week. I would be here and there usually four or five visits per day on the day that I worked. Sometimes I would see someone who it was kind of holding on. Sometimes I'd see someone who was quickly fading away, but it is an experience we've seen time. Again, Roy and Terry that the person in the bed is hanging on for someone outside of the bed.

01:63:22 Ben It's very important for the person who they're waiting on or their loved one, or the person who they hope visits. Can he make it to the bed? And I'm not like making fun here. This is a very real human drama. I've seen play out dozens of times where grandpa is waiting for the grandson to call or Skype. Once that happens, he feels like he can let go, right? Or sometimes everyone gathers vigil style all day. Everyone thinks the person's going to go. They don't. They returned to the hotel room and the person dies in the night. That is very common it's as if the person, even if they're like, non-communicative a lot of times it seems that seriously ill and dying patients, they kind of know when the loved ones are nearby and they kind of know when they're not. This is fascinating because you can't interview the deceased person after they die.

01:64:18 Ben Did you die on purpose in the night after your loved ones left, but, all joking aside like that is a very common occurrence, I believe because the person, whether they're like cognizant of it on some, on the surface level, or if it's a metaphysical thing, I, I am not a, an expert on death and dying, but I've been around it enough to say that people often wait for a release, right? they wait for permission. I've heard a million stories and I'm guessing you have from your various guests where someone will say, mom, it's okay to go. And, I would encourage your listeners. If, if anyone listening today has a loved one who is in hospice care or who is in the hospital, fighting what we call a battle of diminishing returns. I might lovingly suggest that you have a conversation. If you haven't already, where you tell how much you love them and give them permission, say, I love you.

01:65:23 Ben If you need to go, mom, if you need to go dad, it's okay. Because a lot of times people are hang on beyond when they need to beyond when they're comfortable, because they think they need to, for the person outside of the bed. This was actually something I did as a chaplain too, is I, I would counsel the loved ones who were struggling with anticipatory grief. Oh my God, my mom is dying. Help me Cantor. I would sit with them in the waiting room or the coffee area and we'd talk it over. I would always encourage them as I'm encouraging your listeners and viewers, like you are doing the right thing to be here. Now, you don't have to move in. You gotta go home and shower. Right. I had that conversation with a few people who were doing vigil for like days and weeks got a shower.

01:66:09 Ben You got to rest, can't move into the hospice, along with your dying loved one. Being there, if you can, is great. I might offer also, were talking earlier about the virtual tour, Terry and Roy. I would say that one of the silver linings for this terrible Corona plague is all of us have become a lot more fast style in this medium. Right? Right. We've gotten, we've gotten better at working the camera and working the audio. What does that mean? That means we don't really have an excuse not to visit our elderly grandpa. Grandma, mother, father loved one, whether they're seriously ill and dying, or it was just like a lonely old person in a nursing home. You have no excuse. Now I'm not trying to guilt all.

01:66:56 Speaker 5 Of your listeners, but find them that.

01:66:59 Ben Look, I have like a crappy old iPhone, but with the power of FaceTime, boop, look there I am. Right. Some of the most moving stories of chaplaincy I heard, especially in the early pandemic, Roy, when New York city was being rabid. I remember this was the first time I cried for the pandemic. I read this very moving story about chaplains at one of new York's biggest hospitals at the, if your listeners remember nearly a year ago in April, it was when it Crested in New York city. We all realize that as a nation like holy crap, this is dangerous. Especially in the cities, especially among our older and vulnerable. There was a story of chaplains being so overwhelmed with the quantity of deaths and the fact that they couldn't hold hands anymore. They couldn't embrace with arms and proximity, the loved ones. Well, what became their saving grace? it's not as good as holding hands and being there, but I I've read stories.

01:68:03 Ben Perhaps your viewers or listeners have heard too about chaplains being like tech assistance, they're like facilitators and certainly social workers and activities directors, shout to all of your eldercare people listening. You guys have all been so creative to try to make that connection via Skype, via zoom, via face, time, all the tech. I, I would remind us God willing, we will all get vaccine soon. We can return to so-called normal life. Let's not forget how we've all learned to make these connections through the computer, through the phone and so forth, because I will acknowledge, as I did at the beginning of the interview, Terry, like, it's not easy to visit all the people who are dying. It's not easy to visit elder care facilities, even the fancy ones like in Rockville and Bethesda that look like hotels. It's still a little depressing. I mean, let's be honest, let's call a spade, but the people there are all individuals with loved ones and those loved ones.

01:69:05 Ben If they visit, they are doing an amazing thing. If they forget to visit, well, give them a call. Yeah. Can I.

01:69:13 Roy Mentioned in that, one of the, it was a telling picture from that time period is that one of the hospitals had got a bunch of orchestra or chorus orchestra stands from somebody and they had all the, iPads set up on the stands where they could take them into the residents room. Yeah, yeah. Help them out. So, but it's a good thing. I don't think we take advantage of that enough is that sometimes, if we can't be there being on the VIRtually there, just being able to see or have somebody see us, it's the next best thing. We need to figure out how to make that happen.

01:69:50 Terry There aren't any reasons why now in this day and age, there aren't any reasons why you shouldn't be able.

01:69:56 Roy To, and we can't sell our elders short that we can fix, they can figure out how to do it. Having science saying they just can't do it is really not an excuse. We can figure out a way to make it happen for them. So,

01:70:07 Ben Yeah. Yes. When safety allows, I also encourage us to put our teenage and 20 something and even elementary school, age kids to work as tech assistance with our elders. I happened to be the proud father of a 10 year old girl who I overhear in virtual school being like tech assistant to three or four different professional teachers. It's very funny, but any of you who are at home with your students in virtual school, that you may have overheard this conversation too. If you are lucky enough to have elderly parents who are still alive, if you are not personally fabulous with the tech, maybe the younger generation is, and that's a nice way to bridge the gap. Hey grandma, this is how you use FaceTime. It's a nice way to make that connection.

01:70:58 Roy Well, Ben, thanks so much for taking time out of your day to be with us. This is such an exciting project. You know, we are excited. Hopefully we can get the word out and until you can return to, live theater, at least the, this is awesome for groups with the big screen TVs or I like what you said about popping it into the resident's TVs. A lot of ways to take advantage of this. The, you know, it's this grieving process. I don't, people always talk about closure. I'm not one that buys into that because I don't think it is. You never forget. It's never closed. You always think about it, but helping us to deal with that grief as we go through the process. Also those of us that are left after that process as well, that help us deal with our grief, where we can get on with living as what the person that passes.

01:71:50 Roy That's what they want us to do. They want us to get on with our life and live a good life. But, we can still kind of balance that, keeping them in our memory, but yet moving.

01:71:59 Ben Forward. Yeah, that's right. They live on in our hearts. They live on in the memories. Yeah. And, and, if there's, a big message from the play it's that the stories and songs of our lives live on after we go, yeah. You know, famous rock stars. I'm also a music teacher by day. I tell the kids, someone like Michael Jackson or Whitney Houston, they died, but they live on forever through their music. That's the power of celebrity or fear, Humphrey Bogart, you live forever on the silver screen. Yeah. For just regular people, it is about sharing the stories. Yeah. That's what we're trying to celebrate in life. Review the hospice musical. Yeah. Who are you, what did you do there? Can you go.

01:72:53 Roy Back to it? You are, what we said at the beginning of the show, building on your tech segment there is that, with all the tech that's available, the recorders on the iPhones, the video, there's no reason that we can't Chronicle, part of our life in writing our talk to our parents, our grandparents get the N I think it's good to have it in their words. If we can capture their audio are even better video of them. Think about how your young kids that really don't know them, that will be so beneficial to them at some point in their lives. Take a few minutes to figure out how to make that work, Chronicle that story, for sure. A musical. Yeah. Or write a music. Yeah,

01:73:37 Ben No, please. You can write a musical about a non hospice subject. I don't want there to happen with my mother-in-law. According to family legend wrote a great musical at the same time that someone else also did a musical adaptation of the secret garden and the other one made it to Broadway.

01:73:57 Speaker 5 No, no one else write a hospice musical.

01:74:02 Ben However, I would love to hear from you if you've enjoyed the conversation today. And, I, I just, if I could, I'd love to end with, a line of gratitude. We, we end the play being grateful for the life that we live and for the opportunity to visit and connect, in the end. I thank you for seeing through the nonsense in the end. I thank you for being your holy self in the end. I thank you. My newest best friend in the end. I thank you for grace at the end. Pray for me. Hold my hand. Stand with me while I can stand. Rest is coming soon. I thank you for letting me be in your room. Light of your hope Sprite in the glue. So grateful to have Matt. You wonderful. You are wonderful. You.

01:75:15 Terry Oh, that's awesome. Well, one more.

01:75:18 Roy Time. Tell us where they can reach out, get some more information on life, review on yourself.

01:75:26 Ben You got it. Yeah. Life Review, The hospice musical is the name of the project. My name is Benjamin Kintich or with the lyrics along with the team of composers, Michael Miller, Jason Spiewak, Andy Bossov. Our website is life review, musical.com. L I F E R E V I E W M U S I C AL .com. I hope I spelled it.

01:75:50 Speaker 5 Right to MOU. See.

01:75:52 Ben Life review musical. We have a form on the website where you can inquire. I will be happy to be in touch. We also have a trailer video that's beautifully made. You can see some footage from our last live workshop. If you're having trouble picturing it, you can see us with of jazz hands, some audience shots to show that weren't always in virtual land. More about the history of the show. It's kind of an interesting story. Six years in the making. Yeah. And, I would be delighted to have you the listener or the viewer to be part of our virtual tour for 2021. So be in touch. Okay.

01:76:29 Roy Okay. That sounds great. Y'all reach out, find out more about it. It's going to be enlightening and, we will definitely, once you get a few live performances, under your belt there, we will definitely get you back on. We'd love to talk to you again, see how things are going. Keep up with the projects. Yeah,

01:76:47 Terry That's right. Learn how to say y'all properly. Y'all gonna die.

01:76:54 Roy All right. Well, thanks a lot. That's going to do it for another episode of educational. Of course, I'm Roy I'm Terry. You can find us at ageucational.com. We're on all the major social media platforms. Of course we will put all of Benjamin's and spell check it and we will put it on and the shell air as well. So, we're on all of them, social, excuse me. We're on all the major podcast platforms, iTunes, Stitcher, Google, Spotify. If we're not a one that you listened to, please reach out. Of course, a video of this interview will go up when the episode goes live. Until next time, take care of yourself and take care of your family. Thanks, Ben. Thank you everybody.

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32 episodes