I hope this post finds you in good spirits and that my American friends enjoyed their Thanksgiving Day celebrations. My day was spent prepping the first turkey my partner, Shane, and I have ever cooked together, visiting friends in the afternoon, and hosting dinner for my younger brother, his wonderful girlfriend, and some dear friends at night. It is always such a delight to invite friends into one's home but this evening felt especially lovely as I witnessed my birth and chosen families connect in ways I had previously considered unimaginable. I continue to carry the wondrous gratitude from that day inside me and it gives me hope for our planet, which currently seems so imperiled.
The news from too many corners of the world is disheartening. Violence, bloodshed, religious fanaticism, endless warfare, xenophobia and the ugly ugly stink of racism and sexism expressed in so many heartbreaking ways. Now, more than ever, we need to be reminded of the beauty inside and all around each and every one of us. Of our vast capacity for compassion, understanding, and for learning kinder, more expansive ways of living.
I firmly believe that theatre has the power and responsibility to remind us of life's beauty and I'm very grateful to currently be part of a show that answers this call. Tonight, I open in Holiday High Jinx, a show by Word for Word, an innovative San Francisco company that performs short stories as theatre.
We're mounting four holiday-themed stories by Damon Runyon (who inspired the musical Guys and Dolls), E.B. White and Joseph Mitchell. Written in the 1920s and 30s, these stories shed light on life in New York City during a period of great danger, excess, and sobering depression. In these troubled times our characters still manage to commit magical acts of generosity, joy, and dignity and I'm proud of our production for revealing the sparkling beauty that can emerge even in the toughest of times.
We run till December 24 and I hope you'll join us for this feast of music, dance, and beautiful language performed by some pretty swell actors (and musician). You can get tickets and more info here: http://zspace.org/w4w/word-for-word-holiday-show
And as you decide what to spend your money on this holiday season I hope you'll consider helping a very talented artist fulfill her gorgeous vision. My friend, Christine Crook is an amazing costume designer who I recently profiled in this article for Theatre Bay Area: http://www.theatrebayarea.org/news/248781/Keep-an-Eye-on-Christine-Crook-Costume-Designer.htm
She is currently creating "HAWKMOON - A Costume Design Driven Performance Art Installation" inspired by the short stories of Sam Shepard. This piece will be performed in Berkeley next January and will feature yours truly and a host of other wonderful artists. Please visit the Indiegogo page to learn more about this exciting project and to donate some funds for tech, costumes and artist salaries: https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/hawkmoon-performance-art-installation#/
I am so grateful for all the people in my life who contribute to this world's beauty - and that includes you, dear readers of this email blast. May we continue to create the world we wish to live in. We will prevail.