News Release
  February 12, 2013


Olivia Fermano


Perelman School of Medicine

This announcement is available online at

In a new addition to the 12/13 season, the Annenberg Center teams up with Penn Medicine to present a theatre work for soldiers and vets

PHILADELPHIA — “Gut-wrenchingly raw” (Military Writers of America); “provocative and powerful” (New York Times); and “scalding, moving…high wattage theater” (Backstage), ReEntry is an unflinching look at the lives of Marines getting ready for and returning from deployment. In partnership with Penn Medicine, the Annenberg Center adds this theatrical docudrama to its 12/13 season as a part of Penn Medicine’s Combat to Care campaign.

Performanceswill take place on Friday, March 8 at 8 PM and Saturday, March 9 at 2 PM. Tickets are $10-$20 (prices are subject to change). For tickets or for more information, please visit or call 215.898.3900. Tickets can also be purchased in person at the Annenberg Center Box Office.

Written by acclaimed producer and playwright, KJ Sanchez with Emily Ackerman of The Civilians company, ReEntry explores the challenges faced by Marines when re-entering family, community and country. Honest, moving and surprisingly funny, this play “shines a glaring spotlight on a serious national concern” with a “heightened level of authenticity” (New York Times). The multi-media piece is based entirely on interviews with Marines and their families, who discuss what it means for them or their loved ones to return from service.

The piece was commissioned in 2009 and has been touring ever since. ReEntry has been used by the Department of Defense as a post-deployment training for service members. It has played at over 30 military bases and sites throughout the U.S. and internationally.

ReEntry is presented in partnership with Penn Medicine. In recognition of our nation’s veterans, Penn Medicine proudly participates in Joining Forces—a national initiative established by First Lady Michelle Obama and Dr. Jill Biden to heighten awareness about the health needs of our nation’s veterans, service members and families as well as elevate the role that medical schools, nursing schools and teaching hospitals play in serving their community.  

Combat to Care, an extension of the national Joining Forces effort,is Penn Medicine’s campaign that celebrates the service of veteran faculty and staff; trains clinicians in the unique clinical challenges of caring for military service members, veterans and their families; and recruits veterans who have demonstrated inspiring dedication, loyalty and strength in the service of our nation to join Penn Medicine. Combat to Careacknowledges Penn Medicine’s commitment
to both hiring and retaining veterans, as well as recognizing the over 160 Health System and Perelman School of Medicine employees who have served, or are currently serving, in the Armed Forces in an active duty or reserve capacity.

“We’re committed to educating our clinicians, staff and medical students on meeting the special health care needs of veterans returning from active duty,” said Ralph W. Muller, chief executive officer, University of Pennsylvania Health System (UPHS).

“In addition to the ongoing efforts to educate clinicians and students, we’re also providing veterans access to a dedicated portal on the UPHS Career Website so they may pursue job opportunities with us,” added Judy L. Schueler, vice president, Organizational Development and chief Human Resources officer, UPHS. “After the ReEntry event, we’ll continue our commitment and work with the University to host targeted career fairs to support veterans in translating their military experience into civilian jobs.”

Through this partnership, Penn Medicine employees will receive complimentary tickets to two private performances of ReEntry, followed by a panel discussion with Penn Medicine and School of Nursing experts focusing on post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and the treatment of anxiety. Attendees may attend one of the two private performances:  Thursday, March 7 at 6 PM or Friday, March 8 at 12 PM. After each performance employees will have the opportunity to ask questions of the expert panel which includes: internationally renowned PTSD authority, Edna Foa, PhD, professor of Clinical Psychology in Psychiatry at the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania and director of the Center for the Treatment and Study of Anxiety; Carmen McLean, PhD, assistant professor of Psychology in Psychiatry, Penn Center for the Treatment and Study of Anxiety; Pamela Herbig Wall, RN, MSN, PMHNP-BC; psychiatric nurse practitioner and PhD student in Penn’s School of Nursing, who has served as medical support with the Marines since 1996; and David Oslin, MD, professor of Psychiatry, Perelman School of Medicine and physician in Geriatric and Addiction Psychiatry and Veterans Behavioral Health at the Veterans Association Medical Center, Philadelphia.

Written by Emily Ackerman and KJ Sanchez
Director: KJ Sanchez
Assistant Director: Marie Byrd Sproul

Liz/Suzanne: Jessi Blue Gormezano
CO: Larry Roger Mitchell
John/Pete: Brandon Jones
Mom/Maria: KJ Sanchez
Charlie/Tommy: Ben Rosenblatt

Stage Manager and Tour Coordinator: Denise Cardarelli
Sound Designer and Production Manager: Zach Williamson
Scenic and Costume Designer: Marion Williams
Lighting Designers: Russell Champa and Dani Clifford
Video Designer: Alex Koch

KJ Sanchez is founder/CEO of American Records. She has produced national and international tours. As a playwright, she has been produced at Asolo Rep, Actors Theater of Louisville, Two River Theatre, Baltimore’s CENTERSTAGE, Round House Theatre, Working Classroom, Cornerstone and Off-Broadway at Urban Stages. She has directed plays by Heather Raffo, Jose Rivera, Quiara Hudes, Kristoffer Diaz, David Ives and Noel Coward. As an actress she has been on stages at The Humana Festival (originating the role of Thyona in Big Love) The Goodman, Berkeley Repertory Theatre, Long Warf, New York Theatre Workshop and BAM. She is the voice of many characters in the cartoons Dora the Explorer and Go Diego Go. Sanchez has taught at UBC, UW, Emerson College, Bard and Juniata. She is a Fox Fellow, the 2012 Douglas Wollop Fellow, an Albert Award Nominee and an NEA CDP for directors recipient.


Penn Medicine is one of the world's leading academic medical centers, dedicated to the related missions of medical education, biomedical research, and excellence in patient care. Penn Medicine consists of the Raymond and Ruth Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania (founded in 1765 as the nation's first medical school) and the University of Pennsylvania Health System, which together form a $4.3 billion enterprise.

The Perelman School of Medicine has been ranked among the top five medical schools in the United States for the past 17 years, according to U.S. News & World Report's survey of research-oriented medical schools. The School is consistently among the nation's top recipients of funding from the National Institutes of Health, with $392 million awarded in the 2013 fiscal year.

The University of Pennsylvania Health System's patient care facilities include: The Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania -- recognized as one of the nation's top "Honor Roll" hospitals by U.S. News & World Report; Penn Presbyterian Medical Center; Chester County Hospital; Lancaster General Health; Penn Wissahickon Hospice; and Pennsylvania Hospital -- the nation's first hospital, founded in 1751. Additional affiliated inpatient care facilities and services throughout the Philadelphia region include Chestnut Hill Hospital and Good Shepherd Penn Partners, a partnership between Good Shepherd Rehabilitation Network and Penn Medicine.

Penn Medicine is committed to improving lives and health through a variety of community-based programs and activities. In fiscal year 2013, Penn Medicine provided $814 million to benefit our community.