They brought a woman from the street And made her sit in the stalls By threats By bribes By flattery Obliging her to share a little of her life with actors
But I don't understand art
Sit still, they said
But I don't want to see sad things
Sit still, they said
And she listened to everything Understanding some things But not others Laughing rarely, and always without knowing why Sometimes suffering disgust Sometimes thoroughly amazed And in the light again, said
If that's art I think it is hard work It was beyond me So much beyond my actual life
But something troubled her Something gnawed her peace And she came a second time, armoured with friends
Sit still, she said
And again, she listened to everything This time understanding different things This time untroubled that some things Could not be understood Laughing rarely but now without shame Sometimes suffering disgust Sometimes thoroughly amazed And in the light again said
This is art, it is hard work And one friend said, too hard for me And the other said, if you will I will come again Because I found it hard I felt honoured
"I want to see, real, living, and in the hour of my own days, that glory which I create as an illusion. I want it real. I want to know that there is someone, somewhere, who wants it, too. Or else what is the use of seeing it, and working and burning oneself for an impossible vision? A spirit, too, needs fuel. It can run dry."
East of Eden (John Steinbeck)
The Museum at Purgatory (Nick Bantock)
Howards End (E.M. Forster)
The Brothers Karamazov (Fyodor Dostoyevsky)
The Night Circus (Erin Mortgenstern)
Ex Libris (Anne Fadiman)
Cosmicomics (Italo Calvino)
The Master and Margarita (Mikhail Bulgakov)
The Complete Works of T.S. Eliot
Doctor Zhivago (Boris Pasternak)
Alice's Adventures in Wonderland (Lewis Caroll)
Invisible Man (Ralph Ellison)
The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Klay (Michael Chabon)
Harry Potter and The Prisoner of Azkaban (J.K. Rowling)
The Outliers (Malcolm Gladwell)
The Heavenly City of the 18th Century Philosophers (Carl Becker)
The Fountainhead (Ayn Rand)
Invisible Cities (Italo Calvino)
The Phantom Tollbooth (Norton Juster)
Jonathan Livingston Seagull (Richard Bach)
The Forgiveness Parade (Jeffrey McDaniel)
The 48 Laws of Power (Robert Greene)
Tolstoy Short Stories
The Griffin & Sabine Trilogies (Nick Bantock)
Elementals (A.S. Byatt)
The World Doesn't End: Prose Poems (Charles Simic)
Today was the best rehearsal day I have ever experienced in my life.
For so many reasons.
I have walked on Broadway stages before. I have even performed on them. But there is nothing like stepping onto a stage you are going to live on for a while, for the very first time. And this time? This time, that stage is on Broadway. And there is no way to describe it but it is simply different. As I walked into the theatre I clutched Jeremy Cohen's hand-- Sophie and Manny reunited on the Great White Way. "I will never forget this moment," he said. I couldn't agree more.
There we were, on the stage, and everyone was so excited! Garret [Sorenson], who has sung on some of the most prestigious operatic stages on earth was as gleeful as a child in a 650 seat house. Sierra [Boggess], returning to Broadway after a stint in our beloved London was orchestrating the picture taking and "moment marking" like a gleeful big sister watching her siblings going to Prom. We shouted! We squealed! We hugged. We allowed ourselves to feel the moment. We are an exceptionally loving and jolly bunch.
We returned to rehearsal and achieved a new kind of theatrical divinity none of us could ever have dreamed possible. The already magical scene reached new depths, new heights, new glory, and we all felt it (there is no way to articulate these tingly moments in the theatre, the closest comparison I can offer is that feeling of kissing a person who is the one...). Progress. Catharsis.
But then, as if all that were not enough, I had a singing session that accessed a quality in not merely my voice, but in my self, that no words could ever articulate. Suffice it say that I sang like never before.
I returned home that night to my family, all visiting from California-- my mom, my brother and sister in law, my two little nieces, and created more memories. Food, laughter, stories at bedtime...
I don't know if I can find the words to describe the quiet perfection of May 19, 2011 exactly, but perhaps finding those words is not important. This kind of contentment, happiness, peace? It is a quiet thing. It requires no language, only silent inner knowledge, like a candle glow of contentment.
Reader? This is what it is all about.
This is what life is all about...
Check out the trial of the Lo-Fi application and your life will change.
I cannot shove any more ironically used, 21st century tweenage slang in here to emphasize this point thoroughly enough.
(Oh, and from experience, don't download it if you have anything meaningful to do within the next 24 hours... because... you might not come up for air and you might forget your friends' birthday or not go to a meeting or be so distracted that you write down the wrong phone number or forget to grab that last load of laundry from the dryer or when you sweep the basement, you accidentally dump the entire contents of the dust pan into the bag of clean laundry from the dryer... Those are some options. So beware. The program is pretty much *that* great...)
So.... no we aren't dorks. We just loooved each other and are pretending we are still in the show. kind of. on a relevant date mentioned in the piece.
...that isn't dorky! it's. :::sigh::: okay. point taken.
So here it is: images from our heavenly Hello Again Reunion on "The 12th of Maaaaaay" in Sheep's Meadow, Central Park. Please note that we deeply missed some notable men (Bob Stillman and Jonathan Hammond to be specific)! In fact, as The Young Thing Blake Daniel said in one of the best notable quotables of the season: "None of my sex partners are coming." Word, Blake. Word.
Me: Hi, this is Alexandra Silber, I'm calling for Vladamir.
Them: [dead silence, then] Da.
Me: Well okay, [nervousrapidfirenerdyvoice] soooo I am doing some research on the katorga forced labor system in Imperial Russia [isoundliketheguyfromTheSimpsons] and I was told that Vladamir was available for a discussion sometime today?
Them: [silence.] Vladamir is out. [more silence]
Me: Okay...well I--
Them: --HE WILL NOT RETURN.
Me: [what?!] ...um, EVER?
Them: Da. EVER. I go now. Goodbye.
Anything Oliver Friendly cooks.
Ice cold watermelon. (A whole one. Just for me. No sharing. Okay maybe a little sharing...just a touch...)
pure, pure water
Piles of books
Lemons Nick Bantock's art work (and company, but that is not so much a sight, I'm trying to be terribly strict here!)
Early morning sunshine
dappled sunlight through the leaves
The extraordinarily blinding colo(u)rs in nature
Lilly playing the oboe
The laughter of people I love
Holding hands (particularly with long time favo[u]rite hand-holding partner David Fetzer)
Holding on to anyone you love
My childhood stuffed animals
The cool side of the pillow
Rosemary / Lavender / Peppermint in noparticularorder Café Hula in Glasgow
Fresh Michigan air (especially after the rain)