|Deirdre Girard and Steve Faria|
Love and Romance at the BTM…
Sunday, May 20, is my 30th wedding anniversary and my husband and I will be spending the entire day at The Boston Theater Marathon. It might not sound romantic but I find something kind of quirkily cosmic in the fact that while we have both individually participated in past Marathons, this is the first time we are involved in the same year. My play Frickin’ Woodpecker, about two South Boston bus drivers who contemplate the mysteries of women, Yankees’ fans, and Muslims, will be produced by Underground Railway. I feel like I hit the BTM lottery with the intelligence of director Megan Sandberg-Zakian, and the hilarious but touching performances by actors Steve Barkhimer and Barlow Adamson.
My husband didn’t get a play in this year (that’s okay, it was my turn anyway) but he is directing the Firehouse Center for the Arts production of Patrick Gabridge’s Second Look. I saw the rehearsal for Second Look last week and did everything I could not to burst out in tears and distract the actors. It is a beautifully drawn heartbreaker based on a true story: The playwright passed a homeless man one day and realized he was an old neighbor. The awkwardness, the painful discomfort of that moment actually hurts to witness. There will be tears when this is staged on Sunday.
Is it kind of pathetic that my husband and I will be snuggling in the balcony of the Wimberly on our big anniversary? If you think so, you haven’t been to BTM. It is one big party – a major celebration of creative theater artists. There will be an energetic contingent of greater Newburyport theater lovers there to support all our friends from the area who are involved this year along with Steve and me: Playwrights Josh Faigen (Warm-Up Laps), Danny Sklar, Jack Neary and Fonatine Dollas Dubus; director Jeff Wrath; producing theaters The Firehouse Center for the Arts and Actor’s Studio of Newburyport; actors Teresa Donahoe, Jason Novak, Bob DeLibero, Charlie Van Eman – and we claim inestimable actor Bob Murphy as one of our own ’cause he hangs out with us a lot!
I choose to believe that Steve and I participating in the Marathon together for the first time on the exact day of our 30th anniversary was a gift from the universe, to commemorate our special day and say to the world that we are meant to be together, forever, creating art, laughing with our old friends, meeting new folks who are drawn to this dynamic life of theater.
And after the Marathon? We’re off to Alaska to continue the celebration…
-- Deirdre Girard