What... (i.e. camp, dance class, birthday party)
        
 
Pick a NYMetroParents Region: All Regions   Manhattan    Brooklyn    Queens    Westchester    Rockland   Fairfield    Nassau    Suffolk  

Resources

   

WESTCHESTER TEEN STRICKEN BY POST-SWINE FLU INFECTION PERFORMS AT TARRYTOWN MUSICAL HALL

     Home  >  Articles  > Local News - Westchester County
by NYMetroParents Staff

Related: Westchester, swine flu, tarrytown, activities,


From Wheelchair To Waltz: A Westchester teenager, stricken by post-Swine flu infection, rises to the occasion as the 'Beast' in Random Farms Kids Theater’s  "Beauty and the Beast, Jr."   

             Max Levy of Pleasantville and Sarah Rossman of Harrison. Photo credit: Anya Wallach                 

When 13-year-old Max Levy arrived for the first day of rehearsal on January 4, for his role as the Beast in The Random Farms Kids' Theater's production of Beauty and the Beast, Jr., he couldn't walk. The prospect of fulfilling the part that he was cast in last June seemed out of the question.
 
Confined to a wheelchair since mid-October, when a post-infection auto-immune disorder threw his central nervous system out of whack and caused him to lose feeling in his legs and feet, Max, of Pleasantville, NY, had barely been to school since September. He had missed out on everything from travel baseball and tennis to bar and bat mitzvahs. But the eighth grader at HC Crittenden Middle School in Armonk had especially missed doing theater, one of his favorite activities.     


Photo credit: Anya Wallach

Last June, just days after auditioning for Beauty and the Beast, Jr., Max boarded the bus for sleep away camp in Maine and, within days, was diagnosed with the H1N1 virus, more commonly known as the Swine flu. After spending a week in quarantine, Max was diagnosed with mycoplasma pneumonia. Soon after, he began to lose feeling in his toes. By early fall, he couldn't move or feel his knees and, soon afterwards, his thighs. He also suffered from exhaustion, malaise, and terrible headaches. Pain throughout his body made sleep difficult.
 
After myriad tests and misdiagnoses, the teenager was finally diagnosed with an auto-immune disorder and put on an intravenous gamma globulin regimen. But the recovery was slow and, when Max was finally able to return to play practice at Random Farms, he was told the show couldn't be re-staged in time to accommodate his wheelchair.

"We were heart-sick," says Random Farms Producer Anya Wallach. "While we didn't see anything wrong with having our leading man in a wheelchair, we knew we didn't have enough time to re-block the show so that Max could move around the stage safely. The set had already been built with all kinds of stairs and platforms."
 
Levy promised Wallach that he would walk within two weeks. Everyone was skeptical, as it had been months since Levy had been out of his wheelchair.
 
"I felt like everything in my life was taken away from me due to this illness," Levy said.  "I couldn't stand losing one more thing, especially since I had been looking forward to playing the Beast since before the summer."
 
Levy forced himself to walk in the water and to swim at the JCC of Mid-Westchester in Scarsdale. With a new infusion of immuno-globulin, Levy graduated to a walker and then to crutches within the week.
 
"His recovery during rehearsals was remarkable," said Wallach.  "None of us could believe how quickly he was making progress."
 
Max explained, "The entire cast and staff helped me come alive again.  I'd hate to think where I'd be right now without this show."
 
After four months of home tutoring, Max went back to school. And by January 18, two weeks before the opening of the show at the Tarrytown Music Hall, Levy was waltzing with his Belle, Sarah Rossman of Harrison.
 

Levy will perform the role of the Beast January 30-31 at 1 pm at The Tarrytown Music Hall, 13 Main Street, Tarrytown. Performances continue the following weekend. For tickets, call Ticket Force at (877) 840-0457 or visit www.randomfarms.com.


Get Your FREE Indoor Activity eGuide!

More Local News - Westchester County Articles

Teen Pro Race Car Driver Plans Project Yellow Light Race to Raise Awareness of Distracted Driving Dangers

Resale Boutique for American Girl Dolls Supports Women with Autism
Family Day Spa Opens in Hartsdale
Pop-Up Fashion Boutique Opens Storefront in Dobbs Ferry
Curious-on-Hudson Announces Three New Kids Classes

Be a good fellow parent and share this with a friend who would be interested
Email Friend

Local Local News - Westchester County Sponsors

Badger Sports Club
119 Rockland Ave.
Larchmont, NY
914-834-1084
Swimming is the Badger trademark. With an Olympic...

ESF Summer Camps at Greenwich Academy
200 N. Maple Ave.
Greenwich, CT
203-869-4444
Founded in 1982 by brothers Michael and Bill Rouse...

Rush Day Camp @ Sarah Lawrence College
Bronxville, NY
914-337-2087
Rush Day Camp at Sarah Lawrence College represents...

Sociable Kidz®
1600 Harrison Ave., Suite 105
Mamaroneck , NY
914-502-3295
Sociable Kidz® is a social skills group for kids ...

Star Kidz-Westchester
Westchester & NYC locations
914-921-0006
Let Your Child Shine! Star Kidz is the unique s...
See Our Local News - Westchester County Directory

local zones

Nassau

Nassau cont.

Suffolk

Suffolk cont.

Westchester

Westchester cont.

Fairfield

Rockland

Rockland cont.

Queens

Queens cont.

Brooklyn

Brooklyn cont.

Manhattan

Copyright 2014 NY Metro Parents Magazine Site Design: THE VOICE