Thursday, January 17, 2013

i'll surely go to hell, but first we must drink together

real live, intimate theatre - dostoevsky's "eternal husband"

i went to a play this evening. a two-man show in an intimate setting, right here in my own little town. it was an adaptation of dostoevsky's short novel (it's not exactly a novella and not fully a novel) the eternal husband. the two actors were very good and although it was actually a dostoevsky i didn't know, but it had all of the elements of dostoevsky at his finest. that special politeness and humility with which half-mad characters speak to one another. glimmers of raskolnikov, the underground man, saintly but mildly insane and surely consumptive but beautiful women. clever lines, "go to hell." "i'll surely go to hell, but first we must drink together." and the undercurrents, oh my the undercurrents.

it struck me that we have no undercurrents today - everyone's letting it all hang out, spilling everything, without subtlety, not letting anything at all bubble below the surface. i think we need more undercurrents. and by that i don't mean hidden agendas (there are surely enough of those, tho' often they aren't that well-hidden); i mean real, raging emotions, boiling just below the surface. now we just get all of that out of our systems passive aggressively on facebook. and i'm beginning to think it's not good for us.

there was a point during the first act where i welled up with tears, thinking of my favorite professor from iowa who died a couple of years ago. i felt a longing to discuss what i'd seen with him that just about bowled my over. and a sorrow that that was no longer possible since he's gone. i would so love to have talked over the performance with him. he would have known how to positively direct all of the emotions and small glimpses of my own madness it brought forth in me.

my advice - get out there and see some live theatre. there's nothing like it.


Spilling Ink said...

The undercurrents, yes, we need them. I need mystery. I don't need it spelled out.

Let's start a revolution, a sort of underground revolution for undercurrents.

(I've not been this excited in over a week because I thought it was just me. I've been looking for in new books, films, other media, and it seemed to be lost somehow.)

DahnStarr said...

Amen! So agree, live is the best. Very lucky here to have three outlets available. The Utah Shakespeare Festival only three hours away, the Eureka Opera House a litte over an hour way, and our own local high school/community shows. It is amazing how more impactful a live performance can be.