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Allen Barton’s play “Disconnection” opening in L.A.

Discussion in 'Movies, Plays, and Documentaries about Scientology' started by Type4_PTS, Dec 19, 2014.

  1. Type4_PTS

    Type4_PTS Diamond Invictus SP

    The Beverly Hills Playhouse where legendary acting coach Milton Katselas taught was a hot spot for Scientology actors, reaching it's peak about 15 years ago. There was a strong connection between Milton and successful Scientology actors.

    Things have changed! It's owned by Allen Barton who is now an Ex-Scientologist. Both he and Milton have been subject to the Disconnection policy of the CoS.

    Apparently it provided good material for a play! :yes:

    Tony Ortega said:

    See Full Story Here:
  2. Type4_PTS

    Type4_PTS Diamond Invictus SP

  3. Type4_PTS

    Type4_PTS Diamond Invictus SP

    Tony wrote an earlier story back in 2013 as concerns Allen Barten. He said:

    Here's the beginning of that story:

  4. CommunicatorIC

    CommunicatorIC @IndieScieNews on Twitter

    Mike Rinder also has a post up about this.

    Disconnection — The Play

    * * * * * BEGIN EXCERPT * * * * *

    Allen Barton’s new play opens on 24 January, the evening before the premiere of Alex Gibney’s documentary at Sundance.


    * * * * * END EXCERPT * * * * *

    * * * * * BEGIN EXCERPT * * * * *

    Here is the press release that has been sent out about Disconnection.

    Skylight Theatre Company kicks off its 2015 SEASON

    with the WORLD PREMIERE of


    Written by Allen Barton and Directed by Joel Polis

    Opening January 24, 2015

    8:30pm Fridays, 8pm Saturdays, 7pm Sundays thru March 1st at
    Beverly Hills Playhouse
    254 South Robertson Blvd., Beverly Hills 90211

    Los Angeles, CA – To launch its 2015 Season, Skylight Theatre Company, LA’s intimate theater with the most 2014 Ovation awards, is opening with noted playwright Allen Barton’s (Years To The Day – critically acclaimed with extended runs in LA/NY/Edinburgh) newest work, DISCONNECTION.

    Based on true events and today’s headlines, DISCONNECTION is a provocative, powerful indictment of contemporary religious intrusion into personal relationships. Four lives collide: A successful lawyer, his piano teacher and his estranged daughter all confront the dark side of dedication to a Church whose aged founder faces the end of his life in isolation and regret.

    “DISCONNECTION was inspired directly by my experience with Scientology and its notorious policy of the same name, whereby members must renounce their affiliation with anyone deemed to have gone against tenets of the Church. After watching this odious policy affect the life of Milton Katselas, my mentor at the Beverly Hills Playhouse, and then experiencing its interference in my own relationship with my cherished piano teacher, I was compelled to write this story. Scientology is just one of many controlled-thought systems that have taken hold to varying degrees throughout history, but the play is designed to be a metaphor for all those systems – not just an indictment of Scientology’s disconnection policy, but of all of its ancestors, and hopefully, its progeny as well.” – Allen Barton (Playwright)

    DISCONNECTION opens at 8pm on January 24th at the Beverly Hills Playhouse 254 South Robertson Blvd. Beverly Hills, CA 90211. Performances are at 8:30pm Fridays, 8pm Saturdays, 7pm Sundays thru March 1st. Tickets are $30/34. For reservations call 213-761-7061 or online at

    ALLEN BARTON (Playwright) is a Los Angeles-based writer-director and classical pianist. Last season’s Years To The Day attained international critical acclaim after an extended run at the Beverly Hills Playhouse. Allen has written & directed five short films, and his first feature screenplay, REAL MUSIC, was a top-three finalist in the CAPE New Writers Award Competition. He is author of several one-act plays and has earned numerous stage, TV, and film credits as an actor. As a pianist, Allen performed Gershwin’s “Rhapsody in Blue” at the 25th Annual S.T.A.G.E. fundraiser (Wilshire Theatre), was a prizewinner in the 2002 Los Angeles Liszt Society Competition, and has recorded five CD’s (available on iTunes). In 2010 he was made a Steinway Artist. A graduate of Harvard University, his selected directing credits include Speed-the-Plow, Oleanna, The Heidi Chronicles, Engagement (writer), The Interview, The Real Thing, Rabbit Hole, The Last Five Years, and in addition he is the owner and principal teacher at the Beverly Hills Playhouse acting school.

    JOEL POLIS (Director) most recently directed Allen Barton’s Years To The Day, and Lynn Manning’s Sympathy for the Devil for the Skylight Theatre Company. Before that, Joel directed the world premiere of Kathy Graf’s highly acclaimed award winning drama Hermetically Sealed (starring Gigi Bermingham) at the Skylight. Selected directing credits include Jerry Lambert’s Straight Time at the Odyssey and Joe Bay’s Last Fling at the Hayworth. An actor-turned director, Joel has over 100 TV and movie credits as well as scores of plays on his resume, most recently Kathy Graf’s The Snake Can at the Odyssey Theatre. He is a graduate of Yale Drama School and USC’s School of Theater.

    THE SKYLIGHT THEATRE COMPANY develops and produces new, exhilarating works while nurturing and educating the writers who create them. A vibrant and expanding family of artists giving voice to original perspectives of today’s world, Skylight won 4 Ovation Awards in 2014 for The Wrong Man and Pray To Ball (the most of any intimate theatre in LA) while last year LA Weekly named their productions of Years To The Day, Open House and Sexsting to their Top Ten Plays list of 2013. Skylight’s first year as a company dedicated to developing new plays was 2011, their production of Hermetically Sealed made the LA Times annual list of Top Ten Plays, and Mad Woman moved from Los Angeles to La MaMa in New York. Since then plays developed by Skylight have played Chicago, New York, Edinburgh, Paris and local venues. Twitter: @SkylightThtr, Facebook: Skylight Theatre Company, Instagram: SkylightTheatre

    Production Team:

    GARY GROSSMAN (Producer/Artistic Director) started his career in New York owning two theaters and a theatrical lighting company by the age of 23. Gary worked at the Public Theatre, Café La Mama, and Sheraton Square Playhouse before traveling West in the 70’s to join up with the emerging theatre moment in Los Angeles. He has produced over 300 stage plays, including more than 50 world pre- mieres. Among his celebrated productions are Years to the Day, Wrong Man, Bulrusher, Hermetically Sealed, Sexsting, Mad Women (Best Solo Performance), Romeo and Juliet directed by Milton Katselas (3 LADCC Awards), Dylan (3 LADCC Awards), Influence, Dream Man, Lone Star, Balm in Gilead, Visions and Lovers, Rabbit Hole, Beautified and La Ronde De Lunch. In addition to his work for Skylight Theatre Company, Gary produced at The Cast Theatre, Director’s Theatre and co-produced The Home-Coming, Endgame, and The Seagull for the Matrix Theatre Company. For television he created and co-produced “Sadie and Son” (CBS- MOW) and the sitcom pilot “Man in the Kitchen” (ABC). He is the Executive Producer for award-winning director Chuck Workman’s documentary, “The Actor’s Life.” Gary most recently directed Quarantine for STC’s LAbWorks.

    Cast includes: Luke Cook, Bo Foxworth*, Rob Hughes, Jay Huguley,* Dennis Nollette, Carter Scott, and Everette Wallin

    * Denotes double cast

    * * * * * END EXCERPT * * * * *
  5. CommunicatorIC

    CommunicatorIC @IndieScieNews on Twitter

  6. Smurf

    Smurf Gold Meritorious SP

    One of the cast members has been on-course in Scientology.
  7. Type4_PTS

    Type4_PTS Diamond Invictus SP

    CoS benefited for decades by focusing on the recruitment of artists and celebrities into their organization and were later able to successfully suppress the public commentary when those some individuals became disaffected and/or left the organization.

    Those days are over! :thumbsup:

    The tide has changed and very few artists are willing to publicly support this organization while more and more have publicly spoken out against it. Plus there's a growing trend where these artists use music, dance, singing, etc to tell their stories once they've discovered the true nature of the CoS.

    Thank-you Allen Barton, Roslyn Cohn, Leah Remini, Lisa Marie Presley, and to all others who have done this! :clap:
  8. Type4_PTS

    Type4_PTS Diamond Invictus SP

    Tony made an interesting comment when he mentioned this:

  9. Veda

    Veda Sponsor

    A little background for any visitors drawn to this thread by its title...

    The geneses of Disconnection seems to have been 1951 when, in the book Science of Survival, Hubbard explained that those "low on the tone scale," who refuse to cooperate with the Dianetic program, should be isolated from society.

    Of course, one way of determining if someone was "low on the Tone Scale" was to observe his reaction to Dianetics and Hubbard. A negative reaction meant "low."

    This idea was not formalized as "policy" until the mid 1960s.


    John Sanborn, editor of several early Scientology books, on the first SP Declare (from a 1986 interview):

    "Hubbard had Marilyn Routsong, who was the World Wide Ethics Officer at St. Hill Manor, deliver the first Suppressive Person declare. He had written this system up and now he was going to use it."

    "Hubbard said, 'Declare so and so.' And he put out the order. Boy, in those days being declared was like a death sentence.

    "He said, 'As soon as you give him the order come back.' And when she did he said, 'How did he act? What did he say? Did he say anything?' And so forth. He was thrilled like a kid to see how his new dictatorial system was going to work."​

    And from Hubbard's secretly authored 1955 'Brainwashing Manual' [With word substitution]:

    "It is important to know that the entire subject of loyalty is thus as easily handled as it is. One of the first and foremost missions of the psycho-politician ['Ethics' Officer/'Church' of Scientology] is to make an attack upon Communism [Scientology] and insanity synonymous."​


    IMO, Hubbard knew exactly what he was doing.


    A 1968 HCOPL announced the cancellation of both Disconnection and Fair game. This is an example of "Policy" being used as PR to mislead - in essence fake or display policy.

    From Tony Ortega's blog chat from a few years ago:

    Xenu in reply to Sketto:

    Since I worked for HCO [Hubbard Communications Office] during the 1970s, I'd thought I'd chime in with what I personally witnessed during those years.

    Hubbard actually did cancel disconnection, after Australia had cracked down, and New Zealand was on the verge of outlawing the cult. Not only did he cancel disconnection, but he also banned Fair Game, sec checks, and the recording of what went on in auditing sessions. Way cool, huh?

    The only problem was that the policy letter cancelling those things was only issued to the New Zealand government commission that was considering the banning of Scientology.
    [note: It was also mentioned in a few other places, such a PR book written for Scientology, and, and there was a show made of displaying Hubbard's 1968 faux "Reform Code" for "wogs" and "raw meat."]

    I oversaw a ton of disconnection during the 1970s, and had to disconnect from a couple of people myself. I personally saw that they continued to happen at major Class IV [now called Class V] and SO [Sea Org] orgs just as they always had. Nothing changed... Sec checks and Fair Game continued, despite the wholly disingenuous sham of policy change.

    Andre Tabayoyon, and various other poster here, who were in HCO in the '70s, can easily vouch for me on this

    Here's some more from Xenu over at Tony O's at the Village Voice:

    ...Hubbard was getting a lot of PR flack over disconnection, so he wrote a policy which would help PR a lot without changing anything significant. I'm sure it was meant to be misunderstood by outsiders...

    The policy did NOT cancel disconnection, rather it said that 'disconnection as a condition' was cancelled. Now, one might well ask, WTF is 'disconnection as a condition'?

    If you dig through some ancient ethics folders, you would find that they would often explicitly state that the subject of the ethics order was to disconnect from one or more other parties who would be named in the ethics order, and that reinstatement to good standing would not happen until that had been done. THAT was disconnection as a condition.

    So we stopped naming names of people to be disconnected from in ethics orders. Instead, Type A PTS would be told that they had to handle or disconnect, and if handling was impossible, well, too bad! And people still had to disconnect from SPs... the Nov '68 policy had no real impact other than PR.


    From Volume One of the OEC Course, HCO Division, a.k.a. a Green Volume, from 1974, HCOPL dated 23 December 1965, 'Suppressive Acts, Suppression of Scientology and Scientologists', and on page two of that HCOPL there is a list of suppressive acts over forty lines long - most of the page.

    "Suppressive acts are defined as actions or omissions undertaken to knowingly suppress, reduce, or impede Scientology or Scientologists...

    "[Such suppressive acts include] public disavowal of Scientology... public statements against Scientology.

    "[Suppressive acts also include] continued membership in a divergent group; continued adherence to a Suppressive Person or group pronounced a Suppressive Person or group by HCO; failure to handle or disavow or disconnect from a person demonstrably guilty of suppressive acts; being at the hire of anti-Scientology groups or persons...

    Disconnection was standard Scientology policy and practice in the 1970s.

    When Hubbard's 1968 sham cancellation of Disconnection was seen to have created some amount of confusion, during a period of schism in the early 1980s, a decision was made to issue a reinstatement of Disconnection, but anyone seriously involved with Scientology in the 1970s knows that disconnection was never discontinued. "Handle or disconnect" was always standard practice, no matter how it was disguised or named.

    Even Marty Rathbun and Mike Rinder have confirmed that it was Hubbard who instructed Miscavige to have the Policy Letter, re-affirming the practice of Disconnection, issued, and that, in reality, Disconnection had never really been discontinued anyway


    An video presenting excerpts of two '60 Minutes' programs, over a decade apart (one from 1980, another from the 1990s), is a virtual non-stop display of Scientology's use of its religion angle and religious cloaking. From the beginning where the front group 'United Churches' covertly morphs into the 'Church of Scientology', to 6:20 - 7:55, where Scientologists, including Mario Fenninger, "defending" their "religion," respond to being asked about Paulette Cooper, to 7:58, where the wholesome looking PR guy, dressed as a minister in a clerical collar, appears, to 8:56, where it's explained how Scientology bankrupted, and took over, the Cult Awareness Network, by having individual Scientologists inundate it with lawsuits claiming religious discrimination.

    Fenninger eventually became a victim of the same evil he had, for decades, successfully ignored.
  10. CommunicatorIC

    CommunicatorIC @IndieScieNews on Twitter

  11. HelluvaHoax!

    HelluvaHoax! Platinum Meritorious Sponsor with bells on

    Thanks! Always great to see how far back Disconnection reaches with documentation. It avoids those silly discussions about how Ron bumped into some by-passed-charge in 1966-1967 that supposedly caused him to "suddenly" write sociopathic policies on declares, disconnection and fair game.

    Disconnection has always been and obviously remains a core value of Scientology.

    I particularly liked your conclusion about Mario Fenninger. Normally, Scientologists don't mind the pervasive manipulation, coercion and evil that Scientology exerts on the world---until one fine day the crosshairs of Scientology cannon (figuratively and literally) is pointed and fired squarely at them personally.

    That's why, by far, the most successful method of getting people out of the cult is apparently to let the cult itself convince them by applying the insidious tech to them personally. I don't know why Mario didn't figure any of this out and leave Scientology long ago. I guess by the time he became aware of Scientology's true nature, he was too old to earn enough money to support his independence and too weak to escape.

    I wonder if Mario still has enough spark left within him to discretely show up one night to his friend Allen's play "DISCONNECTION". That would be quite an emotional and moving experience for him, I would imagine.
    Last edited: Dec 20, 2014
  12. Type4_PTS

    Type4_PTS Diamond Invictus SP

    I posted a video in another thread just now from Margaret Heffeman on the subject of 'willful blindness'.

    It's worth watching and may be applicable here in this situation with Mario Fenninger.

    It's over here:
  13. CommunicatorIC

    CommunicatorIC @IndieScieNews on Twitter

  14. CommunicatorIC

    CommunicatorIC @IndieScieNews on Twitter

  15. AnonyMary

    AnonyMary Formerly Fooled - Finally Free

    Listening now to the mp3 interview. Thanks!

    PS: This is an excellent interview so far. He talks about his time as a scientologist, Milton Katselas, The Beverly Hills Playhouse and the mass Disconnection by scientologists students (including Scn 'celebrities") and his being declared for helping Milton deal with the effects of it as it was happening. Then he goes into the reason for the play DISCONNECTION, about his professional and personal relationship with Mario Fenninger, who was forced to disconnect from Alan.

    Must-hear audio!
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2015
  16. I want to go see the play! Carpool, anyone? :biggrin:
  17. CommunicatorIC

    CommunicatorIC @IndieScieNews on Twitter

    Tony Ortega: Allen Barton on the Disconnection previews

    * * * * * BEGIN EXCERPT * * * * *

    Previews for Allen Barton’s play Disconnection began Friday night, and we asked him how they’ve been going. He sent us this reply…

    Previews have gone great — two packed houses of 80 people each, full of total strangers, which is unheard of. Previews for intimate theatre are usually 10 of your friends you’ve dragged out and given free tickets to just to get butts in the seats while you solve the final technical glitches that arise. Some interesting happenings as well: On the first night there was a couple in their 50s in front of me, and during the scene between the young married Sea Org couple, the woman suddenly seemed to pay attention to her partner, taking his hand, rubbing his back, looking at him — he seemed upset and they left at intermission. Another woman was clearly upset during the first act, and then when Act II hit and Oldman did the 8-page monologue, she started rocking back and forth and left the theatre in distress before the final scene. (I would love to know whether she was someone who is IN or someone who is OUT — so interesting that the reactions can be identical on either side of the equation.) On Saturday night, a gentleman came up to me at the end, introduced himself, and told me he had been declared suppressive in the last month, lost most of his friends and 80 percent of his business. He loved the play, and I congratulated him on being declared, saying, “All the best people have been.” Anyway, it’s been a great start, couldn’t be happier. Not everyone will love it, of course, but it certainly seems to impinge nicely, on both those in-the-know and those who don’t know anything about it. No harassment or disruption — I have a feeling HBO is providing a lot of cover for me and I’m sailing under the radar, at least for the moment.

    * * * * * END EXCERPT * * * * *
  18. CommunicatorIC

    CommunicatorIC @IndieScieNews on Twitter

  19. Type4_PTS

    Type4_PTS Diamond Invictus SP

    In the comments section the other day Skip Press gave this review of the play:

  20. Boson Wog Stark

    Boson Wog Stark Patron Meritorious

    I would imagine Mario's main source of income, what there is of it, is from private piano students, and they were/are nearly all clams or are ALL clams.

    Earlier in his career, Mario would have been better off trying to parlay his minimal credentials as a concert pianist teaching at a community college or something. If he's as good a teacher as Allen thought he was, he could have had a nice, stable career. Instead he got stuck in a cult.