Posted by: sergius 10:57 am EDT 10/10/21

What happened indeed. There are probably a lot of answers to this question. And none will be good enough. But for me what happened is this: I learned that plagues--of disease, of injustice--come and go; they're history. They find new forms, new expressions, and some will always be more personal, more an outrage, than others. I learned, too, that I go to the theatre not to escape the plague of history--personal and collective--but to know it better. And to know my own astonished emotions in the face of it. As such, 19 months was far too long to be without this contact, this balm. I learned that there are two darks, and that what transpires in a dark theatre can help transform what's dark outside of it. It has been sad and lonely to be without the theatre. I missed it more than I can say. I wanted my return to be quiet and so I chose to see Richard Nelson's play first because I knew I'd be able to immerse myself in a kind of stillness that can be restorative. And it was. Nelson exalts the quotidian and this is either thrilling to you--it is to me--or maybe it puts you to sleep. These "Rhinebeck plays" are meant to be lived in not watched. You're either at the table with these people, trying to figure it out, or you're in some other room. I think that conversation IS theatre. And I'm happy, very happy, to be at the table again.

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