Sometimes I feel like people will never understand why the arts are important. If you’re not a member of the choir, there’s just no way to explain how the arts impact everyday life. Then I hear about a new arts immersion program which is making children more likely to come to school so they can learn. That’s huge. But there are also the smaller ways just this season has changed me.
Does it make me a bad person because I’m not a fan of Vincent van Gogh? My eyes involuntarily roll when someone talks about his genius. But I find myself listening more to news about him, and about other painters, since WEPG presented Inventing van Gogh. I’m looking for ways painters, potters and other creative soulds enrich the everyday. (I read today that the creators of Ragtime are writing a new musical about Degas’ Little Dancer, which made me think of COCA…but that’s another story).
I’m paying attention to stories about the incarcerated since This Wide Night made me ask the questions about how big a debt to society is. These questions about justice, and what I’m prepared to give up in its name, are really big ones and they have an impact on daily life in ways I overlooked before. I’ll really be searching my belief system when we start working on Lonesome Hollow – it’s that kind of show.
I’m a musical theatre geek, and catching Rex Harrison doing a song from My Fair Lady had extra resonance for me today, because I got to watch GBS fall in love involuntarily during Engaging Shaw. “Slings and Arrows” at Steve and Marjorie’s is more fun because I get to be in on the joke, and it makes me think of the season of Shaw we watched there.
My ears perk up when I hear mention of string quartets now, and I wonder if there is as much drama inherent in one as I saw during Opus. I’m enjoying seeking out quartet music, and thinking about dusting off my viola as a result. I like being consciously more aware of art as it intersects my life, and theatre reminds me to seek the experience.