Thursday, August 6, 2009

''Henry V and Living As Though There is Nothing to Lose'

Dan and I finally took the big ride into the big city of Cedar City, to run some errands, stock up on food supplies, and lastly, see Henry V at The Utah Shakespearean Festival, (courtesy of Aunt Margie). As always, the Utah Shakespeare Festival never ceases to amaze me, and seeing this production was no exception. It struck me this year as the way I used to feel in my twenties reading the russian novelists, only all in one sitting. I remember I had to memorize the names of the russian characters by recording the image of the word in my brain, because I couldn't pronounce them. The striking part of seeing Shakespeare here is the precision, the talent and mastery of the 'whole' production, all done in a recreation of a Shakespearean theatre (indoor/outdoor) and executed in 'period' time. It is miraculous, this Shakespeare writer, if you get yourself to enough of these productions, gradually you begin to see what 'all the fuss' is about. Shakespeare covers so many themes, philosophies, history, and religions, it staggers the mind. Seeing a play this way assaults the senses all at once, and the images and ideas stay with you for the duration of life. Henry V is indeed a very advanced study of war and God, and like most of his plays, the characters are so well drawn, it makes you wonder how he could conceive such well drawn portraits, again, (speaking as a playwright) it seems most impossible. I always encourage whoever I can to see a Shakespearean play whenever you can, and if you feel they are beyond you,  stick with making an attempt to 'take in his plays'  for the duration of a life, and eventually, when they start to make sense, they will enrich your life in ways you did not see possible--they will become little spiritual experiences, which we all need. I really enjoyed going with Dan, Aunt Margie, and Aaron, sometimes watching them to the left and right, all of us trying to grapple with what was going on 'on stage'. Thank you so much, Aunt Margie, for giving us this experience. 

Being here, (albeit staying in a cheap hotel) has also given me a chance to get on my computer without losing a connection to the internet every couple of minutes (like I do in Boulder) and get some of the work done that I have been remiss to do. I'm pretty sure I'll be doing 'Bohemian Cowboy' in San Francisco in September for three shows, its all locked except for the details. Its interesting as I've been trying to put 'this gig' together that I got a message from both my cousin Scott and Aunt Linda about doing the show at 'The Beat Museum' there as well. Perhaps I could do both of them. I'm also looking at trying to get a couple of shows set up in Santa Cruz, as someone there has offered to help with the details there. Summer is sometimes a hard time to connect with folks who have and promote theatre, as many of them go awol it seems, so one has to be very patient. 

In the meantime, I'm still working on the music, writing some more songs and 'keeping up my chops', as I instinctually know that this music vision will eventually payoff. I had a very satisfying experience last Friday, in a concert series at a place called 'The Burr Trail Outpost' which ironically used to be a motel that belonged to my Grandfather. I got to play with three of my favorite musicians, Eric, Rob, and Billy, and I believe we put on quite a show, playing for just over two hours. The audience that showed seemed appreciative and attentive, and as musicians, we had one of those 'experiences' where we all seemed to be of one mind and spirit. I've been playing enough this summer to feel fairly confident with what I'm playing, and felt very satisfied. Once again, the magical aura of Boulder, Utah. 

Well, its almost six o'clock in the morning, and I still should get a couple of hours sleep before the journey back to paradise, so I'll close by telling you that as the machine prepares for the next level of 'Bohemian Cowboy', I'll begin to share the experience of the next part of the journey. I'm excited, a little frightened, and more than willing to continue this theatre lifestyle experiment, and as I've said before, "I'm still living like I have nothing to lose, still shuffling my feet forward towards the prize..."


Gerry said...

Wow, quite a chunk of information here to ponder. I got a letter from Aaron just a couple of days ago, and had not yet answered it. He seems determined to correspond with his old great aunts. I also turned on to a two hour documentary on Channel 8-2 on Shakespeare. That was so fascinating, hearing more about and actually seeing the places he lived, the first theater, his life as compared to Marlowe's. It must have been sychronicity to turn to this documentary just when my family was about to take in a Shakespeare play. Sakren's second in command left as did 3 players citing differences with Sakren, but Sakren was unflappable saying the one guy was so talented he expected to lose him. Linda was just talking to me saying that the guy at the Beat Museum said maybe you could do your show there, so that does seem like a possibility. I thought it was neat that the visiting poets all got to see Linda's sculptures of poets on display at the Beat Museum. Does sound like you are moving in preparation for the show right in time. Wondered what you guys were up to. Glad you got to some steady computer juice so you could write a great entry. Talked to Gary who still acts a little like he could break if he was not careful, the most notable effect I see from his heart attack. He claims not to be suffering much of any slowdown from it. Mom said...

Wow, I missed out! It sounds like an adventure. I have seen Henry V, but like you say each show brings in different actors and highlights to the show. Great report on Shakespeare.
It sounds like you are lining up Cowboy Bohemian shows. That is positive too!

vooman's voice said...

I didn't know you were going to put on your show in S. F. in Sept. What place? I enjoy your blog very much, but often can't get the comment to print.

DB said...

Henry V is a great play, maybe even a masterpiece.
"Think when we talk of horses that you see them..." great advice for the artist.

To play your show in San Francisco sounds like a great opportunity, even for a few nights. Good luck. Break all the legs.