Monday, November 29, 2010

"I'm tired of looking. Everything I want is right here."

Sunday night I attend the closing night performance of Apuka Theatre’s inaugural production of Terrence McNally's Frankie and Johnny in the Clair de Lune, with an inspired bit of staging in a photo studio/loft on Carlaw Ave. 

I want to say thank you to actors, David Gingerich and Natalie Feheregyhazi and the production team led by director Rod Ceballos, whose adept hand ensured the play's intensity, for creating such a beautiful and moving theatrical experience. You told the story and I got it, moment to moment, and I was so moved. Simple and pure. Why isn’t all theatre like this?! The show only had five performances leaving me sad I cannot force everyone I know to go and see it. Hopefully the company will consider a remount. I feel as if I have been privy to buried treasure. Though I should keep it secret, I can’t wait to boast of it to everyone. And it’s all the more special given the production’s limited run and esoteric existence. 

I felt as if for the first time I could so clearly hear the playwright’s voice as well as directly feel the performers’ hearts beating in rhythm with their characters’. You made me care about Frankie and Johnny, their need for one another and why it had to be now. And why they/we have to recognize the moment when it arrives and do everything in our power to seize it. You elevated McNally’s play and gave it a level of gravitas that I alone with only a reader’s imagination could not reach.

The vastness of McNally’s feelings poured forth through the players’ connection to their own. The brave choice to commit fully to the physical reality of Frankie and Johnny's sexual discovery clearly bore out the truth about the dance of attraction this play so sharply reveals. It was a beautiful experience. I was riveted through out, completely absorbed by this frank, daring and unflinching meditation on love.

Terrence McNally's ability to wrestle this beast called love, kicking and screaming into the light so we may see her naked, full primeval force, leaves me in awe of the depth of his understanding. And I think I only got that because the actors were so committed to their work. Kudos to you both. 

You did this play such a tremendous service. And though it shouldn’t be, it was a rare experience. 

Your production of Frankie and Johnny has Inspired me to live my own life bolder.

Thank you.

I am sure to cherish this memory for a lifetime.

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