Thursday, December 13, 2012



On Sunday and Monday of last week, we produced, with CETM,  an international collaboration of Gefilte Fish Chronicles, the Musical.  It happened in Montreal.  Everything, (which was very different than New York), went well.  The performers, the rules, the venue, the production team, were all different but it was received with kudos, from an audience of American diplomats, French Canadian cultural affairs specialists, theatre people and invited guests.

The impact of this production far exceeded our expectations.  I guess we expected a presentation that would be similar, but a little less sophisticated than New York.   Although the New York reading was superb, we needed to see if the show would work beyond the tri-state area. The show, which is a celebration of Family, is charming and heartwarming. It, like any other production with merit, requires professionalism from the people involved, but not sophistication, in the Victorian Manners, sense. The audience needs to feel that they are invested in the characters on stage because the stage ‘family,’ is – one hopes – familiar, and just like their own families.  

Whenever I see GFC performed, I see things which, despite our attempts for distance, are hauntingly familiar.  Whether it’s a tone, some jewelry, a line, or a mannerism that somehow without even being aware of it, one of the actors duplicates – it makes me miss “The Lekish” more.  OK, I’ll explain Lekish. Our aunts and uncles were many but when we thought of them, we thought of them as one unit/group a large simmering, constantly moving and very alive entity – otherwise known to us as “Lekish.”  When we had a complaint or a request, the reply often heard was  “Go tell Lekish.”  
And so, watching a performance, whether on stage or screen, I long to see them, hear them, or be reprimanded by them.  I miss them all. But I am grateful to have had them in my life and now (most of the time), am happy to have them in my head.  

And speaking of the past, (OK we weren’t—so move right along),  we watched the televised telethon for the victims of Sandy (121212). The entertainers were generous with their time.  Whether sitting on a phone or performing on the stage, they all were committed to helping the people still suffering the consequences of that vile Sandy.  But geez, how’d they all get so old?  A bunch of alta cockers (old people)  took to the stage to make a difference. If you were or are from any of the devastated areas, your memories of what was, are forever changed by what is.  The places we used to go to, (two years ago), simply do not exist anymore. Whether in New York, or New Jersey, that which was always familiar is gone.  The boardwalks, the beaches, the rides, or the food, are never going to be the same. But what is?
Iris & Tara (Goldie)
There is a sadness in moving on.  In losing places as well as people we loved. OK,  you’ve heard it before, nothing stays the same – and sometimes that sucks.  Sometimes the absence of that which was so much a part of who you makes you feel lonely beyond explanation.  I guess I’m not good at dealing with a clean slate.  Luckily, I no longer have to be.  I just told Lekish.  We’re just sayin’...  Iris

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