kyle cassidy (kylecassidy) wrote,
kyle cassidy

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It must have been six months ago that trillian_stars and I heard that actor Joshua Hitchens had adapted and produced a one man performance of Dracula for the Philadelphia Fringe Festival. It sounded wonderful but we couldn't go because Trillian was in a Fringe show that conflicted. Later we heard that he was doing it at the Rosenbach Museum which actually has Bram Stokers original notes and it sounded even more wonderful but again we had a scheduling conflict, and then we saw a newspaper notice that there was a performance of it far far away and we thought we'd try to go and in the midst of this I thought "Why don't we just call him and see how much he'd charge to do it at our house?"

So Trillian did and Josh did and tonight we had an exclusive performance of Dracula in our living room for ten of our friends and ... friends ... let me tell you it was ... astounding, it was jaw dropping, it was mesmerizing.

I was gobsmacked at how he was able to instantly shift between characters, from a sinnister, terrifying Dracula to a witless though lovable John Harker, from horror to mirth, to pathos, to soul ripping regret in an instant. The audience was captivated, hands over mouthes, wiping away tears, and I kept thinking No one has ever had a better seat to this show -- I was two feet away on a chez lounge.

There are many great things about having a performance, a private performance, like this -- one of which is access -- that after the play the actors may pose for goofy photos with your wife. I know this runs the risk of turning into one of those things where some rich dude hires R. Kelly to play his daughters bat mitzvah and the only thing that comes out of it that a bunch of small green pieces of paper change hands and R. Kelly goes home feeling dirty, but it hinges, I think, on the people you invite -- that you find the people whose lives will be made better by knowing one another and you introduce them.....

It was ... I'm really at a bit of a loss for words, after the show the audience -- which consisted of a great wonderful expanse of people from incredibly diverse fields -- after the show there was the most wonderful conversation between Josh and this intimate group of friends about the motivations, the creation, the adaption ... this great work of art and the ribbon of influence that it had from it's inception to it's myriad interpretations, ending up in our living room.

I realize not everyone's got a Josh Hitchen's in their city with a one man version of Dracula -- but I think everybody's got somebody ... someone who plays the guitar or writes poetry or something and you should consider asking them to perform whatever it is they do in a space where you can share whatever it is with friends. Seriously. Be the person who's the person who introduces people to the things and people that they should meet and see.

I've said long ago that if you're doing things right, eventually all your idols will gravitate to your living room and it's true.

* * *

"Well," I said, after everyone had left and we'd settled down onto the sofa, "I feel like I'm Gertrude Stein, & you're Alice B. Toklas."

"No," said trillian_stars, "you're Frog and I'm Toad."

And she put her head on my shoulder and I knew that's exactly what it was, and nothing in the universe could possibly make me happier.

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