Theater As Instruction Manual For Domestic Strife

In Benjamin Kunkel‘s new play¬†Buzz, a central character, Tom, holds forth on theater–he says “something interesting”: TOM: The theater has a very ironic relationship to domestic life, don’t you think? Because what’s been the main preoccupation, for more than a hundred years? I’m thinking Ibsen, Strindberg, Shaw, Pinter…About the biggest theme is the horror ofContinue reading “Theater As Instruction Manual For Domestic Strife”

The Wedding As Public Shared Celebration

This past weekend, I attended an ‘inter-faith’ wedding, staged in a beautiful, rural, upstate New York location–on a farm. It was an emotional and moving experience. I didn’t just attend the wedding; I also ‘officiated’; that is, I ‘performed’ the wedding ceremony. I read out a brief opening address, and with a co-officiant, shepherded theContinue reading “The Wedding As Public Shared Celebration”

Marriage: It Ain’t a Religious Thing

Last year, I wrote a post on same-sex marriage, or rather, on Barack Obama’s evolving views on it. In that post, I handed out some unsolicited advice to the President, suggesting he view marriage in its social and economic context, and noting that there were too many similarities between the explicitly institutionalized racism of theContinue reading “Marriage: It Ain’t a Religious Thing”

Mozart on Constanze: Tepid but Frank

In December 1781, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart wrote a letter to his father Leopold, telling him he wanted to marry Constanze Weber. He might have been a brilliant composer, but when it came to describing his beloved, his skills did not transfer so well. [I] must make you acquainted with the with the character of myContinue reading “Mozart on Constanze: Tepid but Frank”