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The C Word: Stories of Breast Cancer Survivors

The C Word: Stories of Breast Cancer Survivors

Celebrating the lives of breast cancer survivors through dance, song, and the spoken word.


June 8, 2017C-Word Stories of Breast Cancer Survivors performance a great success!

Posted by: Mark Roxey

On June 3-4  Roxey Ballet presented the C-Word Stories of Breast Cancer Survivors Choreographed and designed by Mark Roxey with original music by Robert Maggio and Lyrics by Matthew Hardy. The performances were a huge success. Video and reviews to come….. The recording for Roxey Ballet’s future performances will be recorded in early to mid June. 



May 5, 2017: Demo of YOUR WORLD IS DIFFERENT

Posted by: Robert Maggio

Here’s a demo of one of the 16 songs written by Matthew Hardy (lyrics) and Robert Maggio (music) which will be paired with choreography by Mark Roxey. Performances are on June 4 at 2:30 and 4:30 at Grounds For Sculpture in Hamilton, NJ.

January 4, 2017: New Title for Project and Performance Dates Announced

Posted by: Mark Roxey

Roxey Ballet’s The C Word: Stories of Breast Cancer Survivors title has been changed to WE VS C with culminating performances at Grounds for Sculpture in Hamilton, NJ on June 3 & 4, 2017.   

The music is almost completed and rehearsals with the dancers and breast cancer survivors begin February – May, 2017. 

October 10, 2016: Visiting the Performance Space

Posted by: Robert Maggio

Today, we visited the performance space for this new piece: Grounds for Sculpture in Hamilton, NJ. The premiere will be in early June 2017 in the gallery seen in these pictures. 

October 10, 2016: More amazing interviews with inspiring women

Posted by: Robert Maggio

Today, we went to the Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital Cancer Institute to interview 6 more beautiful, strong women who have survived breast cancer. As with the first two days of interviews, we were inspired and moved by their stories of courage and compassion. We’ve begun writing songs (2 drafts completed) and have ideas/hooks for several more.

August 18, 2016: 2nd Day of Interviews

Posted by: Robert Maggio

We met 3 more beautiful, strong women who have survived breast cancer, as well as the husband of one of our interviewees. As with the first day of interviews, we were incredibly inspired and touched by their personal stories. The next step is to start collaborating on a movement vocabulary, hooks for songs, grooves, and so on — we have to find ways to honor each story, each person. Feels like a challenge, and we’re excited to begin our journey into the creative portion of this project.

August 8, 2016: Portraits: 6 of our interviewees

Posted by: Robert Maggio

A few of the amazing women who shared their powerful stories of survival with us.

August 6, 2016: Our first interview!

Posted by: Robert Maggio

Getting started with our interviews! Let’s take a selfie with everyone who shares their story…

August 6, 2016: Another photo from our interviews!

Posted by: Robert Maggio

What an incredible day hearing the stories of these amazing, beautiful women.

August 6, 2016: Incredible Day of Interviews with Breast Cancer Survivors!

Posted by: Robert Maggio

What an incredible day of interviews at Roxey Ballet in Lambertville, NJ! We were all bowled over by the women who volunteered to tell us about their experience with breast cancer. Such a diverse group of beautiful women with truly inspiring stories.

Now we have to figure out which moments from their stories stuck with us the most so we can talk about some of our favorite moments and how we would like to translate them to the stage be it through music, spoken word, movement or any combination of the three.

We are super excited about this project!


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THE C WORD: STORIES OF BREAST CANCER SURVIVORS is a world premiere dance/music/theater collaboration celebrating the lives of breast cancer survivors. Created through interviews with these strong women, choreographer Mark Roxey  and songwriting team Robert Maggio and Matthew Hardy will use music, dance and spoken word to tell their stories. The dancers will be accompanied by live music, performed by Gina Milo, Desiree Rodriguez, and Aurelia Williams.


  • March 2016: Mark Roxey participated in a discussion with administrative members of the Robert Wood Johnson Hospital and the Breast Cancer Research Center of Princeton, NJ. The talk centered around how Roxey Ballet might collaborate with breast cancer survivors to help them regain confidence and a sense of self-identity after their surgery.
  • Summer 2016: Mark Roxey, Robert Maggio and Matthew Hardy will interview breast cancer survivors at the Breast Cancer Research Center in Princeton, NJ. These interviews will lead directly to material used in the project: including spoken word, movement, lyrics and music. Our intention is to invite the interviewees to participate in the creative process, and in some instances, perform in the finished piece, speaking, singing and dancing.
  • Fall 2016: Hardy & Maggio will collaborate to create a song-cycle (approx. 10 songs) for voice(s) and recorded tracks, based on the various ideas culled from the interviews, exploring a wide variety of emotions, from heartbreak to comedy. They will make demo recordings, coach the musicians and record rehearsals for choreographic workshops and rehearsals. Hardy and Maggio will include spoken word, possibly delivered by the interviewees themselves, into the fabric of the song cycle.
  • Winter 2016: Roxey will develop the choreography with the Roxey Ballet company through a 2-month series of open workshops that includes collaboration with the interviewees. Roxey will incorporate singing & speaking of the interview texts by members of the Roxey Ballet company in the piece.


  • June 2017: THE C WORD: STORIES OF BREAST CANCER SURVIVORS will premiere at Grounds for Sculpture with the support of the Robert Wood Johnson Hospital in Hamilton, NJ with live music. These performances will be coordinated with the Breast Cancer Research Center in nearby Princeton, NJ.

RECORDING and beyond

  • July 2017: The vocal tracks of  THE C WORD: STORIES OF BREAST CANCER SURVIVORS will be recorded at Shelter Island Sound in New York City, then mixed and mastered by producer/engineer Alfred Goodrich at Silvertone Studios in Ardmore, PA.
  • THE C WORD: STORIES OF BREAST CANCER SURVIVORS will be cycled into Roxey Ballet's permanent repertory. If live music is unaffordable for future presentations, the recording will be used for rehearsals and performances.
  • The recording will be released as a digital download and as a CD.


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Project Details

Start and End Date

05/05/2017 - 05/07/2017


Lambertville, New Jersey

Updates (10 RECENT)

Last Updated June 8, 2017

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Project Created By

Organizer Image

Robert Maggio

Lambertville, New Jersey

Passionate, versatile, and engaging, composer Robert Maggio embraces the collaborative and deeply communicative act of making music. Maggio is equally comfortable composing for a string quartet, chorus, wind ensemble or an orchestra, as he is collaborating on a new musical, a modern ballet, or songs and incidental music for a play. Hailed as a composer...


Matthew Hardy

Role: lyricist

Mark Roxey

Lambertville, New Jersey

Role: choreographer

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