It was recently announced that Mickey Rowe, School of Drama alumnus and openly autistic actor, was recently cast in the lead role inThe Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time in a co-production with Indiana Repertory Theatre and Syracuse Stage. This play, based on the novel by Mark Haddon, was a West End and Broadway hit, winning a Tony for Best New Play in 2015. The other element that makes this play special is that its lead character is a young boy with autism, yet all of the actors who have previously played him have been publicly neurotypical. Rowe is the first opnely autistic actor to be cast in role, making a powerful statement about inclusion and representation.
Rowe recently did an interview with Salon magazine where he said, "There are probably a lot of actors who are on the spectrum but feel that they can’t be open about it because they’ll be discriminated against. And what I would just say to them is that the young actors who have a disability in this country need to see positive role models who will tell them that if you’re different, if you access the world differently, and if you need special accommodations, that theater needs you and that the world needs you. Not that anyone should ever be pressured, though, to come out about something that they’re not ready to come out about.”