On her character: Vivian’s singular scholarly pursuit and intellectual focus of understanding of irony and all it’s complexities makes her out-standing, but that same drive and trait also keeps her standing out-side of any real social or emotional connections with others. She discovers that the walls you put up to keep you safe can in fact isolate you and what is a life with out true connections?
I was humbled by Margret Edson’s mind when the night before rehearsal started I realized that her main character was non-randomly named.
Vivian= from the Latin root of ‘vivus” meaning life.
- the manner in which one conducts oneself
- the period of bringing something forth
- something that is produced
- the capacity to endure
- to hold up
- to remain firm under a burden
and of course the animal – bear.
On the show: I had a fair understanding of the medicine, specifically cancer treatment, before the play because of my own personal experiences with the disease. It was interesting to hear about diagnosis, treatment and bedside manner from Jason’s perspective though. I’ve never thought of cancer as a puzzle that needs solving — or a mental challenge. I’m trying to understand how to take the emotion out of what’s happening in the world right now and focus on thinking critically about how to move forward in America. Jason has been a helpful reminder that taking the emotion out can help move progressive forward, help us problem solve. It hasn’t been an easy adjustment. I’m way more Susie than Jason.
Besides the play being an incredible work of art, I love Marti Lyons — she’s definitely one of my favorite directors (and one of my favorite people) and I’ve been a fan of the Hypocrites for some time. Those were my main reasons for working on the production. That said, staging this play in the round(ish) was an awesome challenge and this cast — they are the best. I feel really lucky that I got to be with this group of people during this time. It’s been really helpful and healing.