A way to survive the empty nest and a "cracked "relationship with a fun daily challenge of new experiences, reflections, sources, and some biblical guidance. I hope this blog which offers a fun journey to survive by trying something new, either vicariously or by doing, will result in a survival tool kit to replace the past familiar doing, giving, and/or incorporating the interest of your child or your long gone love interest, with some new self interest(s).
310 Sweat-Pittsburgh Public Theater-Riveting, Powerful, so Real
Sweat is a 2017 Pulitzer Prize winning play about the
struggles of the Olstead’s Steel Tubing workers in Reading, Pennsylvania. This
play dives into the lives of close friends from 2000 to 2008 as they face
the consequences of a changing economy. It’s a powerful story on how our
livelihood is the thread that holds together identities, relationships and survival.
Sweat is a riveting experience that
exposes what happens when that thread is cut.
This drama opens a realistic window into the lives of seven hardworking middle class steel workers. The play begins at the local
bar where three long time girlfriends, Tracy (Amy Landis), Cythia (Tracey Conyer
Lee) and Jessie (Michelle Duffy) congregate following their shifts on the plant line. This is the meeting place where they, and the others,
laugh, unwind, celebrate and share dreams. The dialogue is honest and sometimes
raw as the play intimately plunges into their lives.
Kevin Mambo (Brucie) and Tracey Conyer Lee (Cythia)
Everyone has a
connection with Olstead’s Steel Tubing. Cythia’s and Tracy’s sons, Chris
(Ananias J. Dixon) and Jason (Patrick Cannon), are part of the multiple generations of plant workers. It
is their expected life path. The
steel plant binds the residents of Reading and later tears them apart.
historical. The music emanating from the jukebox and the news feed from the bar televisions give authentic flash backs of the time and events
leading to America’s de-industrialization . The play moves years forward when outsourcing
of work and rumors of plant layoffs begin.
These events lead to fear that replaces the characters' anticipated security in
working hard, saving some money, and enjoying a retirement with a pension.
Patrick Cannon (Jason) and Ananias J. Dixon(Chris)
The strength of this play is the potency of the characters that are superbly acted. Their lives are tangible and so real: Tracey's and Cynthia's long-standing friendship deteriorates when Cynthia is promoted to management; Cynthia and her son, Chris, struggle with their
love/hate relationship with ex-husband/father, Brucie’s (Kevin Mambo) drug
dependence; Jessie gravitates to the
bottle after the dissolution of her marriage; and Jason feels abandoned when his childhood
friend, Chris, desires to leave the production line and pursue college.
As Ananias Dixon (Chris) explained, “this is a play
where the entire cast have equally strong parts. Everyone has a moment”.
Everyone did have a moment as I laughed, cried and gasped at the compelling ending.
Patrick Cannon (Jason) back home to Pgh
This Pittsburgh Public Theater production is one not
to miss. Sweat gives a voice to the communities that unraveled during the de-industrialization
of the early 2000’s. Although still relevant today, Sweat gives a riveting
intimate glimpse into the world of human fear and desperation when your
livelihood and "all that you know" evaporates.
(This powerful drama, runs from Nov 8 through Dec 9th at the O’Rielly Theater. For tickets and more on the PPT season go to ppt.org. )