Join the Conversation

A group of actors with disabilities, who were performing the musical “Footloose” at Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts, got a special message from Kevin Bacon after their finale.

The cast of Detour Company Theatre had just taken their bows, the audience still on its feet from the standing ovation, when the huge screen behind them on the stage lit up with a video feed of Kevin Bacon sitting next to his brother, Michael.

“I wish I could have been there. I wish we could have been there, but we hear that you guys are doing a kick-ass job,” Kevin Bacon said.

The actors hooted and clapped.

“It was cool!” said Davina Watson, one of the actors.

Here’s how it happened:

The actors at Detour Company Theatre were staging “Footloose,” and during rehearsal one day, the director Sam said, “Wouldn’t it be fun if Kevin Bacon came and saw our show for the 30th anniversary?”

EARLIER: Actors want Kevin Bacon at their show

Bacon played the rebellious city teenager who moves to a small

“Why wouldn’t he?” someone where rock music and dancing have been banned in the 1984 movie. Detour’s musical version of the show was June 6 and 7 at Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts.

FEATURE: The remarkable actors of Detour

“Let’s invite him!” said Sam’s son, Christopher Forrest, who is 36 and had been brain-damaged at birth.

If he attended, what Bacon would find is that every actor in Sam’s company has some kind of disability – a lack of confidence not among them.

The actors, who range in age from 19 to 65, put together this video in hopes that somehow the actor would see it and come to the show:

People posted the video on YouTube, Facebook and Twitter; they shared it and re-tweeted it, and eventually Bacon did see it.

“Somehow or another, it made its way to Kevin Bacon’s heart,” Sam said.

He’d have loved to come, his people told the Detour group, but he was already booked with his band, Bacon Brothers, for concert the same night at the Miccosukee Tribe’s Gator Jam Music Festival in Miami.

Could he somehow do both? That’s where the nonprofit he founded,, came in. The organization connects people with celebrities to benefit grassroots causes. With help from the Miccosukee Tribe and Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts, set up the connection between the two venues.

The plan was for the Bacon Brothers to perform the song, “Footloose,” not in the group’s regular line up, and live-stream the performance to the theater in Scottsdale where Detour was performing. Onstage in Scottsdale, the actors would have danced, their performance beamed back to Bacon and the Miami festival goers.

But it was raining in Miami, and the Bacon Brothers appearance was delayed, throwing off the time table. So the brothers linked in to send a message instead.

“We’re thinking of you and sending out good wishes, and I know you crushed it,” Kevin Bacon said.

Bacon said he would give the group a shout out in front of the 10,000 festival goers when he got on stage and encourage people to send Detour messages of support on Twitter using the hashtag #footloose and donate to the group at

“It was cool,” said Davina Watson, one of the actors said.

Director Sam told the audience in Scottsdale, “Kevin Bacon may not be here but behind me is a group of celebrities the likes of which you will never meet.”

And then the band onstage played “Footloose” again, and the 850 people stood up and danced along with the cast.

LINK: Learn more about Detour Company Theatre

Article source: