Vereen Hopes Work Starts Dialogue on Homelessness, Human Compassion

SRQ Backlot

As Ben Vereen sits in a Sarasota restaurant wearing a cap that reads “Spiritual Enforcer,” intermittently piping pleasant sounds from a wood recorder, he waxes about the promises Baby Boomers made for the future, recounting his hopes from the past to a reporter born well after the Vietnam War. “Taking things back to the ’60s,” he recalls, “we were going to make it a better world for you guys.” He ponders that promise for a moment, then speaks up again. “I’m sorry.”

But whatever ills of humanity his generation failed to expunge, whether by negligence or because such goals were futile to start with, Vereen himself has never given up. Today, he takes a break from preparing a production of Hair—his revival of the musical his the stage at the Venice Theatre in the fall—and discusses his role in Time Out Of Mind, a drama about homelessness set to open the…

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About tjmcfee

Freelance writer. Activist on homeless issues. 48 years old. I write about subjects that need to be examined closely and thoughtfully. The idea for Brain Sections came from reading a book about abandoned asylums. I wanted to set a suspense story in that setting. The inclusion of crazed scientists turning homeless people into zombies is what makes the story unique. View all posts by tjmcfee

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