Tonight I saw a play. It was perhaps one of the most harrowing plays I’ve ever seen, and I have seen a lot of plays. Big plays that everyone has heard of like Wicked, plays you didn’t know were plays, like MASH, plays most people have never heard of like The Beauty Part. Tonight’s play was a Pulitzer Prize winning play called Doubt. And although I could not see it again any time soon, it was fantastic. The play has only four characters. It is the sixties, Kennedy has been dead a year, and the Catholic school that in which our play is set has its first ever black student, a boy in the eighth grade. The action begins when a young teacher/nun comes to the principal’s office to ask about a student who went home with a bloody nose. While she is there the principal (also a nun) asks her to watch, although she doesn’t say what to watch for, those of us less innocent than the young nun already know she suspects someone in the school of harming boys. Eventually the young nun tells her that the black student went to the rectory and came back upset, with alcohol on his breath. I won’t reveal the ending, but it’s not the guilt or innocence of the priest that is the drama. The central drama is about protecting a little boy who never even appears on stage. A little boy who already has a full plate dealing with his social status, without the added drama of what is suspected. It was fantastic. The director chose his four actors extremely well, to the point that I actually think adding even one character would have taken away from the play. If you live in my town, you should absolutely go see it. It runs the next two weekends Saturday and Sunday at seven, and if you ask I’ll be happy to provide more details!
Another amazing thing in my town recently, was the cemetery walk. Our oldest cemetery was created in 1899, but has graves from before that, which were moved when the old cemetery closed. During the walk, a costumed guide walks you around the cemetery pointing out interesting graves and leading you to the graves of “interesting people of the past” where costumed actors give speeches about the person they portray. What I liked most about this (it only ran last Sunday) was that the people represented aren’t only the important (like the guy who worked with Thomas Edison and electrified my town), but instead also include the ordinary (like the spinster who worked most of her adult life at the Elgin National Watch factory eventually becoming the first female supervisor, or the gardener who worked at the Mental Health Institute). This was my first year, and it was especially fun because Kristin and I ran into some other friends on our way in. The cemetery itself is super pretty, and borders one of my town’s three nature preserves. The presentations were all informative and interesting, but not at all spooky. That’s because one point of the walk is to show people that the cemetery is really more like a beautiful park for adults, than a creepy place frequented by ghosts or whatever. And it is like a park. I have gone there and taken beautiful pictures or just read a book. I tried to convince my brother and his fiancée to have their wedding there, but Stevo thought it was too weird. Which reminds me! If you come back on Tuesday, I should have pictures of the wedding which occurs at Lords Park Monday morning. I will be the only guest who is over the age of 3, so I’m pretty excited about it.