If It’s 3:45 AM It Must Be…

Productive time!  Banging out letters–not nearly enough of them yet–to all manner of important folk; funders–yes, that’s important–but also Embassy officials and other artists and producers.  My sleeping pattern’s wrecked since coming back from LA.  I was in Cleveland all Wednesday meeting with the Cameri Theatre of Tel Aviv, in the States presenting their brilliant HAMLET — they’ll be at Theater J next March with their even more revealing and relevant PLONTER (TANGLE) and we’re working out details about a Manhattan tour stop first, where Theater J may very well provide the set and props before the show comes to DC.  Setting up a giant tour like that, as we prepare to audition Sam Forman’s hysterical comedy THE RISE AND FALL OF ANNIE HALL… As we get ready to work with Israeli playwright Hillel Mitellpunkt on refining the translation of his important play, THE ACCIDENT, which we’ll be auditioning for in mid June. And then I go with my girls to Israel for my nephew’s bar-mitzvah. I leave before the close of the june 30 fiscal year and so am trying to get our ducks in order now.  DAVID’s box office is wreaking some minor havoc with our end of season projections.  So it’s a time for scrambling.  It’s a time for enlisting friends.  And, it turns out, it’s a time to be up at, well, now it’s 3:53 in the morning.  And ANOTHER trip on a plane this week — to Chicago for 36 hours for ANOTHER bar-mitzvah of ANOTHER dear nephew.  We’re back on Sunday, June 1 for the Israel@60 festivities on the Mall and the two shows of DAVID on Sunday.

I will sleep in some other life.  Or on the plane.  Or in some other theater’s production of something (that’s a joke!).  But all this nocturnal madness reminds me of the great pleasure I’ve had in writing the ten minute play that was mentioned in Jane H’s Backstage column yesterday in the Post.  I’m really kinda happy with the play, even though I won’t be in town to see it.  Want some info about it?


It’s called THE GREAT WHITE UNDULATING ORB IN THE BED BETWEEN US and it’s directed by Deborah Kirby and features Jim Jorgensen and Charlotte Akin as a married couple (how fitting) and Margery Berringer as the wife’s Frappuccino-sipping confidante and friend. Here’s how it starts (well, let’s say, here’s how it goes for the first 2 pages):

A couple in bed.
One reading lamp; her side.
She (S) does the crossword.
He (H) scrolls on a laptop; white and translucent. Occasionally, he taps.
She hears. Everything. Waits. Separately, they look at each another.
Disappointing one another, we presume.
They resume their undertakings.
A flurry of typing. Then he stops. Looks. Did he get away with it?
Apparently. Emboldened, he tries again.

S: I’m going to bed.

H: Goodnight.

Turns off the light.
They revert to their marital composure.
He scrolls. She turns her back.
He taps. Types.

S: Finishing up?

H: In a minute.

S: (Out) It never ends.

H: (to self) It should.

S: It doesn’t. (Up in bed) It is an endless stream. This continuous current. The insistent chatter.

H: Of life around us.

S: Surrounding us. Drowning us. (to H) …I can’t sleep with that on, you know.

H: I can go away.

S: Would you?

H: It that a request, or a question?

S: It’s a puzzle. (Out) The low hum of the industrial turbine. The seductive pull of the “cathode.”

H: Where’d you get that?

S: I know things. I write things too, y’know. When I’m not earning money for this family.

H: (Conceding) Believe me–

S: I wish I could.

H: So, what are you writing? In your journal?

S: I don’t have a journal. I have my head. What are you writing?

H: Email.

S: Really?

H: I’ll be done in a minute.

S: No, you won’t.

H: (Out) She’s right. I could stay on for hours. I could stay away for days. So long as I had this to come back to.

S: (Out) Y‘may not. Never know.

H: Do you realize I had 188 new emails today?

S: So?

* * *

And so it goes… Find out what happens by attending the first week of the Source Festival. And let me know how it goes!

2 thoughts on “If It’s 3:45 AM It Must Be…

  1. My Italian immigrant grandmother, whose girth, wit, and wisdom grew as I did, always advised me in heavily accented lilt to “hava yoo owna mind”… translation: have your own mind, don’t follow the pack, think for yourself, make decisions and choices outside the collective consciousness. Her mantra was meant to protect me from the ‘bad influence’ of the city thugs that lie just outside of our Bronx borough. The delight of living so close to Manhattan lie my mostly weekly visits and trips to the theater there… through my many Broadway and off Broadway experiences, I became fairly discerning in what worked onstage and what didn’t.
    I was seated in the opening night audience of David in Shadow and Light. I found the experience moving, fun, passionate and completely entertaining. The energy of the ‘house’ was riveted as librettist Yehuda’s storytelling unfolded, cracking open the ancient story of David. As it is with most midrash, the original story gets stretched against the confines of the concretized version of memory and tradition. As a graduate student at Yale, studying theology, I became versed in the exegetical framework of retelling and interpretation. Later as a Teaching Fellow there, we fleshed out the notions of liberation theology against postmodern thinking.
    Certainly, what we see depends on where we stand in the room (and we have all heard versions of that concept before) but I plain ol’ wondered if the reviewers were actually in the same theater that I was that opening night. What I witnessed on stage was an exhilarating interpretation of Scripture that was at once expansive and congruently intimate. A postmodern invitation to examine the illusion of greatness as we wrestle with human and divine will. It’s too bad that the critics viewed this production from their evaluative minds…if they had allowed their hearts to be present, they may have delighted in a personal metanoia — allowing the sum of its quirky parts to be enjoyed as a satisfying whole.
    So, please, go and see this terrific piece before it concludes its run…follow your own mind, and heart, and enjoy it’s wonderful actors, music, staging and fresh interpretation!

  2. Im very impressed, Ms Bernard has shown herself to be a bigoted intolerant christian bashing shrew.

    The NAZIS would BE SO PROUD!

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