Roe’s Missing Stories

Roe tells the stories of women who wanted an abortion and found it hard to get. The play never imagines what it’s like to believe abortion is wrong when all the authorities and powers in your life are lined up to pressure you to violate your conscience. Continue Reading »

Patty Duke’s Unforgettable Life

Looking back on her life, Patty Duke emphasized the importance of her faith, long-time husband, and reconciled family, saying that despite everything that had befallen her—abuse, several broken marriages, and a severe emotional illness—“I’ve been richly blessed. When I pray, I never ask for material things. I offer only prayers of gratitude.” Continue Reading »

Saintly Defiance on Stage

Franz Jägerstätter, born in 1907, led a wild youth in Austria, turned to God after fearing he had killed another man in a fight, and settled down with a wife to run a farm and father children. In 1943, he refused the draft out of a conviction that a Catholic could not fight for Nazism. Defying the entreaties of mother, neighbors, priest, and bishop, he went to the guillotine. Even after the war, Jägerstätter’s countrymen called him a traitor and denied his widow, Franziska, and their three daughters any aid. Only in 2007 was Jägerstätter beatified by Benedict XVI. . . . Continue Reading »

The Play of Daniel

Earlier this month, I had a chance to see the Gotham Early Music Scene’s production of The Play of Daniel, a medieval Christmas pageant, performed as part of the annual Twelfth Night Festival at New York’s Trinity Church. The festival, which the church started several years ago, revives the idea . . . . Continue Reading »

Keep It Shakespeare, Stupid

The Oregon Shakespeare Festival is launching a three-year project to commission 36 pairs of playwrights and dramaturges to translate the works of Shakespeare into English. Yes, English. John McWhorter in the Wall Street Journal expresses support for this plan, saying, “Much of Shakespeare goes . . . . Continue Reading »

Lear vs. Lear

There is a block in Brooklyn where it storms every day—twice a day, on Sundays. It’s been storming since January, and it’ll last till May—and then the storm will spread out all over New York. On one side of the street, at the Brooklyn Academy of Music, Angus Jackson’s . . . . Continue Reading »