Tuesday, June 07, 2016

wit | director's notes

Here's what director Angela Konrad had to say about WIT, halfway through the rehearsal process.

I first encountered Wit at The Vancouver Playhouse in 2001. I was enraptured. The delicious blend of humour and pathos; the intellectual gymnastics; the stimulating conversation about God, death, purpose, and meaning; the theatricality. This one remarkable play held everything I care about in life, everything I love in theatre. But I was also mystified. What did it mean when the Playhouse produced what seemed to me a deeply religious play? What is the significance of Donne’s Holy Sonnets or Vivian’s journey without a faith perspective? I remember saying that the play would be a more natural fit at Pacific Theatre. And here it is.

Since immersing myself in this story, I have come to appreciate it even more. The layers of complexity and paradox. The skill and elegance of the writing. The clarity and humanity of the characters. The lessons about the seduction of knowledge and the redeeming power of love. One day in rehearsal, I remarked to my cast that it is so enriching to live inside this play, it would be a privilege even if it was never staged. And yet, the story is too soul-satisfying not to share.

Edson has said this play is about grace, which she defines as “the opportunity to experience God in spite of ourselves”. With our variety of faith perspectives, in spite of ourselves, we have been bathed in grace during this process. Whatever your faith position, may you be also.

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