Laughter is the Best Medicine for Mother’s Day Author/humorist Kelly Corrigan featured at The Center for the Arts |

Laughter is the Best Medicine for Mother’s Day Author/humorist Kelly Corrigan featured at The Center for the Arts

Gary Cooke
Special to The Union

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One reviewer has described author/humorist Kelly Corrigan as "a warm hug to the messiness that is motherhood."

That hug is coming to Grass Valley on Mother's Day, as another in the Laughter Is the Best Medicine series sponsored by Dignity Health Sierra Nevada Memorial Hospital.

She will be performing at The Center for the Arts 2 p.m. Sunday. Tickets are $35 for members and $40 for non-members.

"I think this is a perfect Mother's Day event," Center Director Julie Baker said. "We chose Kelly Corrigan to be a part of this series because in her writings she approaches issues of health, including being a breast cancer survivor herself, as well as death, parenting, and all the important life topics with humor, insight, candor, and warmth. She will bring tears to your eyes from laughing and crying."

Deb Plass, vice president for marketing at the hospital, put it this way.

"Kelly is the best story teller I've read," Plass stated. "She moves through real life, coming-of-age stories, that anyone who is a mom or has a mom can relate to. These pearls of wisdom are vivid in my own life, as I care for my mom with Alzheimer's and keep pace with four grown kids and two grandkids. Kelly concludes that mothers are the glue that keep us connected."

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"Corrigan speaks with warmth and delicate humor, writing about raising children, marriage, surviving cancer, female friendships, and grown-up relationships with parents," Plass said.

"Glitter & Glue: A Memoir," is the name of Corrigan's latest book. The title refers to her mother's declaration that, "Your father's the glitter, but I'm the glue" in their family. The book is an account of Corrigan's own journey, and her changing relationship with her mother, resolved in part through insights she gained while working as a nanny in Australia after graduating from college.

The book also deals with her own struggles to cope with raising her own family, the loss of her ovaries and the discovery of breast cancer.

Corrigan is a New York Times best selling author whose other books include "The Middle Place" and "Lift." Her work has appeared in Oprah Magazine, Good Housekeeping, and Medium.

She co-founded Notes & Words, a yearly benefit concert for Children's Hospital in Oakland that features writers and musicians. Millions have viewed her video essays and interviews on YouTube. She lives in San Francisco with husband Edward Lichty and their two daughters.

Corrigan described her world view in simple terms: "People are struggling; make yourself useful."

Plass said participants in the event should "be ready to experience a wonderful range of emotion guaranteed to keep us entertained."

She said the program includes a question-and-answer session with Corrigan.

"This is the perfect gift for Mother's Day," Plass said.

This is the second year the hospital and arts center have maintained a series about laughter that has included performances by Bill Cosby, Dana Carvy, Paula Poundstone and Paul Reiser.

"This is our way of trying to balance the inevitable stresses of life with laughter and positive emotions while bringing people in the community together," Plass explained. "We think Kelly Corrigan will provide a wonderful and positive way for mothers to reflect on their roles, and for their families to appreciate them in new ways. What better way to spend this special day?"

Individuals who say "Laughter is the Best Medicine" when purchasing tickets in advance or at the door, or who bring their receipt from Mother's Day breakfast or lunch with mom, will receive a discount of $5 off each ticket. For tickets, visit or call Center Box Office at 530-274-8384 x14. Doors open at 1 p.m.

All physicians providing care for patients at SNMH are members of the medical staff and are independent practitioners, not employees of the hospital.

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