CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- On Oct. 19, Charleston playwright Cynthia Wilson, who wrote "Battered but Not Broken," will take her anti-domestic violence message to the stars. The Hollywood stars, that is.
That evening, she'll be one of the featured guests at Survivors in Action's first No Victim Left Behind Gala at the Palazzo di Migianella in El Dorado Hills, Calif.
The list of invitees also includes Arnold Schwarzenegger, Tyler Perry, Oprah Winfrey, Wesley Snipes, Will Smith and his family, Tyra Banks, Heidi Klum, Mariska Hargitay and Angela Basset. Halle Berry, who works with the Jenesse Center, a domestic violence intervention program in Los Angeles, was scheduled to attend but won't be there because of the recent birth of her son.
"Just to be in the room with them," Wilson said. "I'm looking forward to it. I'm not the least bit nervous. I've been waiting on this opportunity for a really long time to get around people who really understand this journey. They're all advocates."
Alexis Moore founded Survivors in Action in 2007. When she fled an abusive relationship in 2004, she left everything behind. Her non-profit, all-volunteer organization donates 100 percent of the proceeds it receives to help other domestic violence survivors worldwide, regardless of age, gender, sexual orientation or immigration status.
Both Moore and Wilson will speak at Saturday's event, as will Heidi Markow of the Beginning Over Foundation, which also offers support for survivors of domestic violence and domestic homicide. The gala will be streamed live at www.survivorsinaction.org.
"I'm beside myself. I have to pinch myself," Wilson said. "To have the opportunity to do this, it blows my mind."
This is just the first event in Wilson's partnership with Survivors in Action. Moore is also helping to support future productions of "Battered but Not Broken," Wilson said.
"We'll do what we can to advocate against domestic violence," she added.
In November, "Battered" will go to Miami for 10 weeks, where a new cast will come together and polish the show before branching out to other cities in the state -- Orlando, Jacksonville, Bradenton, Palm Springs and Hollywood were among those mentioned. Other tour stops being eyed are New Jersey, New York, Philadelphia, Columbus and Ashland, Ky.
Wilson, in addition to being a domestic violence survivor herself, is the aunt of Na'lisha Gravely, who was 19 when, in 2008, her boyfriend shot her to death as she hid from him in a West Side Taco Bell.
"My niece took six bullets, and it is my dedication to other women who have nowhere to go or feel like they have nowhere to go to make an indelible impact," Wilson said. "This has been my life 21 hours a day for the past two years. I'm so committed to making sure my niece didn't take those six bullets in vain.
"This is probably the hardest thing I've ever done in my life. The journey has been long, but the destination is near."
Reach Amy Robinson at flips...@wvgazette.com or 304-348-4881.