Monday, August 10, 2009

Shakespeare & Cukes

We're back in New Jersey—I came early to avoid traffic and to do the post vacation work: three loads of wash so far, the lake linens and towels in a bag ready to go back, other clothes finishing drying. I picked a lot of really nice sun gold tomatoes and the small paste tomato, Juliet, and and made raw sauce with pasta for dinner—excellent,with one of my mucho nacho peppers in it and our basil and parsley. Unpacking, transferring work from thumb drive to main computer, groceries, cut grass, threw out a couple of days worth of mail. Andy didn't leave till after one—they took Nathan skiing– and he turned around on the trick skis! Andy also sawed up a branch and caught a lot of traffic

Saturday was our last vacation day, a real beauty, cool (although there was a whitening of clouds so you could see humidity was coming back). We hung around the lake, I row boated, Paula came over, and then Andy and I went to see at S & Company a play called The Dreamer Examines His Pillow, a twenty year old effort by What's His Name Shanley who did Doubt the play and movie. Anyhow, it had John Douglas Thompson and two other excellent folks, all African American, which raised interesting questions about the play, which, as best I can tell, was played in the past by an all white cast and appears to be set in an emotional dreamscape neverland with no ethnic or economic grounding. To me, this felt too lacking in any social context-- what do these people live on? have they been to college? I'm sure that Shanley (20 years ago) thought this was fine to leave out. In the end, Andy said it well: the actors were better than their material.

And they were super! All three of them, but, my fave, John Douglas Thompson, the Obie award winning Othello was in it, and since it was opening night, there were champagne, cupcakes, fruit, etc.and lots of actors: Tina Packer and Dennis Krausnick, and Tony Simotes and Tod Randolph (who directed) and most of the kids from Measure for Measure.

But mainly we got to shake hands with John Douglas Thompson himself! A dreamboat in a tight black Shakespeare & Company tee shirt and still glowing from the performance. I asked him how he could do this play in the evening after (as he had on Friday) after starring in Othello in the afternoon. He said he took a lot of vitamin B! Very charming and handsome handsome handsome.

We are complete ga-ga fans for Shakespeare & Company.

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