Friday, September 21, 2007

9/20 & 9/21/07 Theater in Ashland

There were all kinds of choices for different theater in Ashland. It was hard to just choose two events. Ashland is famous for it’s theater.

One evening we went to the Caberet in Ashland. “I love you, you’re perfect, now change.” We had a fantastic time. Our little table for three was upstairs so we had a terrific view of the stage. We had soft drinks (multiples since refills were free) and white wine from Oregon (darn – refills weren’t free), plus they kept refilling the water carage. Needless to say, we all learned where the bathrooms were!

The play was about relationships, dating, choosing a spouse, marriage (and a great spoof about a bridesmaid in a hideous dress), aging, divorce and old age (including dating at a funeral parlor). Dave’s dessert stole the show. We even tried to order a second one.

We bought tickets for “The Tempest.” (It brought back memories from reading the play in San Luis Obispo in my teen years when I was active with the high school’s thespian group. We performed “As You Like It” and I was the “business manager” in charge of tickets and front of house issues.)

I bought a copy of “The Tempest” from Barnes & Noble that had Shakespeare on one side and an easy-to-read translation on the other side. Sarah didn’t understand why Dave and I “needed the translation. We can’t understand why she didn’t. I have plans to make a fun quiz using of the vocabulary of Shakespeare’s day.

It was finally the evening we’d been waiting for. I was feeling awful (the full rash was to arrive in the middle of that night and the wide-awake nightmare), but off we went. Our first moment of concern was in the parking structure – people were carrying blankets and pillows. It was finally the people in parkas that made me stop and ask someone. Apparently, the theater is OUTSIDE! Dave went back to our car for extra jackets and the small black car blanket. (Later, Mel told me that "of course the theater was outside – it’s one of the special things that makes seeing Shakespeare so wonderful in Ashland.")

Our seats were fantastic and the evening was magical. The playhouse was a dream. When the marvelous actors took the stage they transformed the stage with a minimum of props and costumes. Dave purchased Sarah and I hot tea and a treat for himself – as always oblivious to the cold – a blueberry icee. As each scene of the play unfolded, we were dazzled by the difference between Shakespeare on the page and performed in real life. At the same time I became sicker and sicker. When intermission came, I begged the kids to leave. We had gotten a taste of Shakespeare and knew we’d be back for more.

We went back to the RV for a night filled nightmare-quality hallucinations -- one of my darkest nights -- made all the harder because Mel was so far away.

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