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NH Film to Spark Talk about "Taboo" Subject

March 17, 2010

CONCORD, N.H. - The issue of suicide is still discussed in hushed tones, if at all, but two New Hampshire organizations want to change that with a film intended to spark deeper exchanges about the issue.

"The Sensation of Sight" will be shown this weekend at free screenings in Derry and Portsmouth, followed by discussions. Both events will be moderated by Maren Tirabassi of the New Hampshire Humanities Council, who says she knows it is especially difficult for survivors of suicide to open up.

"Films help us to discuss any kind of topic in a clearer way. Experiences with culture enable people to talk in freer ways."

Executive producer Buzz McLaughlin will be on hand for the screenings. The film, which was shot entirely in New Hampshire, stars Hollywood veteran David Staithairn and confronts the issue of how suicide affects those who are left behind. McLaughlin says he's received a lot of feedback, particularly from people who have lost loved ones in this way.

"This film has been extremely helpful for them, and it's been a healing experience for them. Some people have watched it, like, eight or ten times or more, and every time they watch it, they say it really helps them."

The screenings are Saturday, March 20, at the Derry Public Library, 64 E. Broadway, Derry (1:00 - 4:00 p.m.); and Sunday, March 21, at The Community Campus, 100 Campus Drive, Portsmouth (1:00 - 4:00 p.m.) The events are sponsored by the New Hampshire Humanities Council and the Suicide Prevention Council.

Monique Coppola, Public News Service - NH