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Law firm Middletons casts depression centre stage

Law firm Middletons casts depression centre stage

Middletons is asking for better lighting on the issue of depression by teaming up with the Melbourne Theatre Company and the production of Next to Normal.

One of the most talked about new shows on Broadway, Next to Normal makes its much anticipated Australian premiere featuring a stellar cast and Tony Award winning musical score. 

The play paints an authentic picture of mental illness through the plight of an ordinary family. This emotion-drenched musical tackles the uncomfortable subject of manic depression, as well as delving into powerful subjects such as grief and loss, drug abuse and suicide. Depression and anxiety affects almost a third of lawyers and one in five barristers, making mental health of deep concern to the legal community. 

In speaking about the play and the firm's involvement, Middletons director of human resources, Tracey McDonald said the firm takes the issue of mental health within the legal industry very seriously. 

"Anything we can do to highlight these issues and have them discussed openly, sends the message that mental health should not carry a stigma and people shouldn't be afraid to speak up and seek support." 

Middletons provides an employee assistance program that is essentially a confidential counselling service for all employees, partners and their immediate family members. The program seeks to help staff or their families overcome problems associated with work and home life. 

The firm also runs a firm wide Vitality Program aimed at promoting workplace wellness and easing the pressures and strains for busy working professionals. 

The Australian premiere of Next to Normal is Tuesday 3 May, 2011 at 8 pm at the Arts Centre, Playhouse. The season runs from 3 May to 28 May. Middletons is a proud sponsor of the Melbourne Theatre Company, a sponsorship which commenced in 2007.

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