Friday, August 26, 2011

Jerusalem, Fare Well

My rush seat for the last performance of Jez Butterworth's amazing play was at the stage left end of the very first row, close enough to get sprinkled (or baptized) from the big tub up front--and almost too close for comfort as bodies hurled through the air in the opening scene.

In the beginning, gales of laughter seemed to greet practically every line of dialogue, but eventually the audience calmed down. I'm guessing I wasn't the only one in tears at the end.

At the curtain call, after an eloquent appreciation of all the folks who brought us Jerusalem, from the producers to the Americans in the cast to the backstage workers and the unions who represent them, Mark Rylance left us with this benediction: "For the days when you want to stay and you have to go, or you have to stay and you want to go, I hope the play will make you feel less alone."

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