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January: Winter Inspirations

Hello everyone, and welcome to what is somehow already my fifth year of writing these monthly updates! Since this has been a month of dramaturgical research, serving on script evaluation committees, and preparing upcoming project ideas - work that doesn’t always provide an easy-to-share final product, I thought I’d try something different in formatting. Rather than covering projects by topic headings, here is an assortment of inspirations I’ve found this month!

Quote of the Month

“It is better to light a candle than curse the darkness.”

- Eleanor Roosevelt

I loved researching the incredible Eleanor Roosevelt, as part of my work on the student activity guide for The Growing Stage’s upcoming production of Maddie and Eleanor by Martha King De Silva. The winner of the theatre’s 2022 New Play-Reading Festival, this wonderful new work for young audiences opens on February 3!

Given my long-standing interest in the Tudor period, I had to stop by The Tudors: Art and Majesty in Renaissance England at the Met. A few highlights of the special exhibition included the exploration of the evolution of Elizabeth I’s depiction in portraiture throughout her reign, and an original scroll used to tally official gifts received at the Elizabethan court.

As I mentioned in a past post I am excited to be part of this year’s Expand the Canon reading committee, working to unearth underappreciated and underproduced classic plays by women and underrepresented genders. This month I learned that Jean Kerr, wife of famous theatre critic Walter Kerr, was an accomplished author and playwright in her own right, and had a great time reading her sharp-witted romantic comedy Mary, Mary.

Winter is always a great time for fiction reading, and it’s been a very rewarding month of novellas and other short works! I finally read (and loved) Margaret Atwood’s The Penelopiad, and caught up on Madeline Miller’s latest short story, Galatea. I haven’t yet finished Before the Coffee Gets Cold by Toshikazu Kawaguchi (translated by Geoffrey Trousselot), but I’m enjoying this cozy and understated tale of a cafe that allows its patrons to time travel by following a very particular set of rules.

I was thrilled to catch The Piano Lesson on Broadway before the conclusion of its run, as I had studied this August Wilson masterpiece in detail but never seen it in onstage. A stellar ensemble cast and evocative production design made this a standout for me.

With the cooler weather I’ve also been inspired to ramp up my knitting for Queequeg & Paulina lately, stay tuned for some new pairs of fingerless gloves hitting the shop soon!

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