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IN a small working-class Ohio town, in the fading light of a winter dusk, 8-year old Ethan Hale, out alone, falls through the ice of a frozen lake.

Moments later, he is miraculously saved. But no one sees the rescue. And no one steps forward as the hero.

So when the typically serious and scientific Ethan explains to his mom that a “birdman” pulled him from the water, Eve feels herself slip further into the dark hole of grief and worry that she fell into when her husband died last year in a freak accident.

Townsfolk ponder the event at the local diner as Sam, Ethan’s uncle and the chief of police, struggles with unknowns and Eve desperately wonders what’s best for her son, ultimately sending him to a local psychiatrist. The psychiatrist, Ruth Conti, has recently returned to town to care for her ailing mother, Iris, and is anxious for the distraction.

In the midst of it all, Ethan wins over his babysitter, Bridget, a punk-rock activist and outcast who is a student at a nearby rigorous college, while also trying to heal from his own grief over his father and to figure out where the Birdman fits.

But as relationships grow and emotions reach a peak, Ethan makes a new realization that will have as much of a ripple effect as the last.

Lift is the story of what happens to ordinary people facing their individual faith and doubt, their collective hope, and what it might mean to be extraordinary.


(6f, 5m)

* ETHAN HALE, 8 years old, very smart, an outsider
* EVE HALE, mid to late 20s , Ethan’s mother, Sam's sister, widow, tough but lost in grief
* SAM OGDEN, 30s to 40, chief of police, Ethan’s uncle, with a full but heavy heart
* JAMES HALE, 29, a dreamer and a memory
* DR. RUTH CONTI, 40s to 50s, psychiatrist, gifted, detached and desperate to connect
* IRIS CONTI, 60s-70s, Ruth’s mother, an old soul who, due to dementia, is now a child
* BRIDGET "BRIDGE" SIMOVITZ, 18-20, Ethan’s babysitter, loner, genius, activist
* ENSEMBLE MEMBERS/VARIOUS ROLES, (2 men, 2 women), including TOM the mailman (50s), DORIS the nurse (30s or 40s), MIKE the mechanic (20s), and LIZ the teacher (40s to 60s), all of whom also form the Bird Chorus