Monday, January 26, 2015

underneath the lintel | director's notes by paul f. muir

Here are director Paul F. Muir's notes from the 2014 production of UNDERNEATH THE LINTEL in Rosebud Theatre.

There is a profound afterward in the published edition of Glen Berger’s script, where he outlines “three incontrovertible facts:”

  1. The universe contains well over 500,000,000,000 galaxies, with each galaxy containing over 1,000,000,000,000 stars, of which our vast, blazing and life-bestowing one.
  2. The Earth is 4,600,000,000 years old in which time, from the Pre-Cambrian Era to the Present, a dizzying, terrifying number of inhabitants – amoebas and trilobites, dust mites and Neanderthals – have all struggled to live from one hour to the next.
  3. I will die. I will be dead in sixty years, though it’s entirely conceivable that I’ll be dead before the week is out.

He goes on to say:
Three simple Facts – the immensity of the universe, the incomprehensibly vast history of the Earth, and our inescapable mortality – loom over all of us like three paisley mastodons. When I shine these three Facts upon any moment in my life, suddenly nothing, absolutely nothing, isn’t strange, bewildering, and out of all whooping.
This play is about a great many things. It’s about loss and being lost, it’s about being found, it’s about discovering joy in the midst of struggle, it’s about the core meaning of our very existence, it’s about the compulsion that humanity has to keep moving forward, “Still, we’ll proceed...” it’s about great defiance and great belief, and it’s about taking a huge risk by having the courage to step out from the safety of our “Lintels” and live fully, and in the process help our fellow sojourners along the way.

There is an idea that if in fact God gave us the gift of Free Will then that Free Will must be strong enough to be able to match, and even defy the Will of God. God will do what God will do, but humanity actually has the ability to defy God to the very last. That is a very powerful, generous, and dangerous gift. What’s fascinating to me is that wherever you may be on this spectrum, God is still at the center. We’re either running toward God, or railing against Him. I suspect God is embracing us either way.

When I think about humanity in light of the above Facts I am humbled that we exist, that we live and love, and that God might just go to any lengths – even to the ends of universe – to get our attention.

I hope you enjoy this little adventure.

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