I talked with my husband and decided to spend an extra night in London so I could see the St Patrick's Day Parade on Sunday. So after saying goodbye to my friends on Saturday afternoon and finally finding a hotel room, I was ready to look at what the nightlife in London has to offer (besides clubs and bars, as I don't drink by myself). I stumbled upon a small (I mean small) theater (the Duke's Theater on St Martin's Place in the Trafalgar Square section) showing a limited run of Tennessee Williams' The Glass Menagerie. Since the cost of a ticket was just about as much as I paid for a 3D screening of Beauty and the Beast the night before, I decided to take a chance on seeing the play.
Here is what I know about Tennessee Williams and his works: he is an American playwright. That's it. I didn't know what the play was about at all, other than there was four characters because the posters outside the theater had pictures of the actors. So I went in totally blind.
I am so glad I took the chance - there were moments of laugh out loud one-liners that lighten a rather desperate situation of a family living in St Louis in 1937. The stage was sparse, but functional to help me separate scenes being played out. The actors' performances elevated the material; to be quite honest, I would have DNF reading this play, as the characters would have gotten on my last nerve. This is a play that needs to be seen and heard (so possible audiobook choice) rather than read.
Cherry Jones, playing the role of the mother, took an obnoxious twat of a character and made me care for and hope along with Amanda that her children have better futures than her. Tom was kinda of an asshole character, with a selfish streak a mile wide; however, in Michael Esper's hands, the audience also senses the guilt, the burden of responsibility place on his shoulders, and his frustrations for wanting to live his own life and explore the world. I thought the character of Laura as pretty much simpering wall paper until the James shows up and love brings her out into the world - Katie O'Flynn and Brian J. Smith had some real chemistry and I rooted for them to have a HEA. Alas, it was not meant to be (Betty can go get bent for all I care!).
This revival is up for 7 Oliver Awards (the UK version of the Tonys) and I really hope Jones wins in her category and the overall stage production takes home at least one prize. A lovely way to spend a couple of hours. But I am still not going to read this because without the actors', the hissy fits from the mother, Laura, and Tom would just anger me.
I recently went to Tennessee to visit my Daughter who lives in Chattanooga. While there as with any city I visit I looked for and found a book about hauntings in the area. This is the book I found. This book contains 28 stories from all over Tennessee, not just Chattanooga where my Daughter lives. While it is not as good as a lot of the Haunting books I have collected over the years it is not bad either. I liked that addresses for some of the haunted locations are included. Most do not come with addresses. I like that there are some fist hand accounts of the hauntings in the book, instead of just the lore. I like that there is some history. Some of the stories were a bit vague though. And in a state the size of Tennessee the writer only came up with 28 stories. I will be taking this book with me next time I go visit my Daughter though and hopefully we can go to some of the places listed. I would love to experience some of the hauntings myself.
A Mississippi plantation on a sultry evening and a dysfunctional family with all its secrets and untold truths. Cat on a Hot Tin Roof is one of these plays that I would much rather have watched on the stage than have read it, because I imagine it must be even more powerful while being performed on a stage.
The big strenght of this play doesn´t lie in discovering the family secrets, although it deals with a controversial topic (the play is set in the 1950s).
It´s much more about the way the characters deal with these problems and how they behave towards each other during this crises. My favorite part of the play is the dialogue between Brick and his father Big Daddy, which is absolutely mesmerizing, spellbinding and which will change your perception of the characters.
I loved reading this play and since I won´t be able to watch it in a theater, I have to watch the movie adaption.
Heart’s Bend, Tennessee is the setting for The Wedding Chapel by Rachel Hauck. Let the town’s name give you a clue as to the message contained within this story – the love story of Jimmy and Colette. Their tale begins in 1948 when Colette and her sister Peg arrive in town to live with their aunt and uncle. The girls are war orphans who lost both parents as a result of World War II. When Jimmy sees a picture of the two girls before they arrive in town, he loses his heart to the younger of the girls, Colette. But due to his shyness around girls and her overbearing sister, the two have a hard time getting to know each other and end up merely looking at one another from afar. Jimmy overcomes his shyness enough to make the first move and the two fall in love. Fast forward to the current day and we find Jimmy and Colette in their early eighties, living lives much different from what they first imagined. Jimmy is now the retired coach of the local high school football team. Colette is living a life of luxury in a Manhattan penthouse overlooking Central Park; she is adored by her fans after having played Vivica Spenser on a soap opera for 60+ years. What has split these two young lovers apart? What secrets does each hold close to their heart? And how does a never used wedding chapel back in Heart’s Bend figure into their love story?
A second love story set in the present is also interwoven throughout, that of Taylor and Jack. They too are natives of Heart’s Bend who left the country to find fame and fortune and is so doing find each other. But each has a boatload of baggage that they’ve brought with them. In spite of that they both want desperately to make their marriage work but fear the unknown. Will the wedding chapel back in Heart’s Bend bring these two closer or finalize their split?
A tale of love and lost love, secrets and lies, and healing of wounds is the central theme of this wonderful story. Interwoven with an unshakable faith in God, you’ll find yourself rooting for the characters in this charming tale.