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Home at University Theater, New Haven, CT

What does it take to add a theater piece to this site? How about a performance that is unlike any theater you’ve ever seen. The best reason to call it theater is that it’s performed in a theater. On the other hand, stripping this performance of a “theater” classification would significantly minimize its achievement in that field. 

Imagine a scripted improv. It’s the jumbo shrimp of acting. Tightly timed beats and blocking but with people who didn’t know they’d be participating. You’ve seen audience participation before and I’ve been that person before but never like this. Imagine a show that had 15 members of the audience on stage. Imagine being there, being directed in real time, seeing the cast, the set, backstage, the crew, and the audience from stage but you didn’t feel you missed the show. Seeing a full performance without being on stage would be interesting too and so of course I want to see it again. Then I want to see it again but have a different role on stage. 

You’re coming into this backwards and it’s okay if you feel a bit lost. Maybe this won’t help; while on stage, I brought a bottle of wine to a party then got married and cleared a clogged toilet. We celebrated a graduation, a funeral, and mourned the loss of a house infused with a life lived. Not just mine but a stack of lives infused the space. All previous and future tenants at once. Each with their own story, lifestyle, agendas, and concerns.

Home was written by Geoff Sobelle and produced by Beth Morrison Projects. It has been on tour around the world racking up duly received awards and accolades at every stop. I’ve been hoping for this chance to see it and even braved the NJ to CT traffic to do so… bonus points for getting to say I went to Yale (to see a play). 

I don’t want to spoil the experience, you just have to see it. I really want to tell you everything though. What I can say is that if you think you don’t like theater, try it. If you think you know theater well, try it. Also, check out other music by the composer/ performer Elvis Perkins. Find out where the closest performance is and fly there if you have too. Pay attention to the Beth Morrison Projects as well. See anything they do, they’re amazing!

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