I am a theater devotee – have been since 1944, when I saw my first play: “Oklahoma.” And all I can say is the theater season this fall in New York has packed a wallop. The array of plays that are out there, and that I chose to see have brought me sheer pleasure – just like the “old” days.
I have run the gamut from off-off Broadway to Broadway, and every time I leave the theater, I am so invigorated, and so thankful that I was able to see these wonderful productions. They took me back to the magic of the theater in the ’50s, when Broadway was teeming with exciting dramas and musicals. For me, this fall was immeasurably more exciting, because theater has never been better.
Last year Mark Rylance’s performance in “Jerusalem,” was so brilliant that there was never a doubt that I was going to see him and his marvelous company in “Richard III,” and “Twelfth Night.” I knew they would be excellent. But they are not just excellent – the performances are a once-in-a-lifetime experience about great theater. I was transported back to 1600, because from costume to set design to language, the show was taking place as if Shakespeare was alive and directing the performance. I was mesmerized by the actors, and their ability to let me experience the genius of Shakespeare.
Then there is the magic of the Public Theater, where I saw their magnificent production of The Foundry’s “Good Person of Szechwan,” Bertolt Brecht’s play starring Taylor Mac, and the amazing actors of the Foundry Theater. I sat on the edge of my seat to catch every word because this is one of Brecht’s plays that I was not familiar with, and it was the first time I had seen Taylor Mac.
Next up was Public Theater’s presentation of “Regular Singing.” It is the last in a series of the Apple Family plays, written by Richard Nelson. I connected with this play because I felt as if I was back in my home in West Allenhurst, New Jersey, talking with my husband about what was happening in the world. But there’s a bonus: The series is being filmed for a presentation on PBS. And guess who was invited to attend? ME! I will be part of the audience next week when the film rolls. I’ll let you know how it goes.