Friday, November 25, 2016

The Story of Roebling

I love live theater. 

The only thing better than seeing a play, is going to a post-show talk back. I often can't think of a question I want to ask, but I love listening to all of the questions, and the responses given by those involved.

Last weekend I finally saw Mark Violi's play "Roebling: The Story of the Brooklyn Bridge" at Kelsey Theatre. I say finally because I missed the other two times the show was performed I missed their short runs. The first performance was at the New Jersey State Museum -- literally steps away from where the Roebling mansion once stood. The other time it was also at Kelsey.

I have been to the Roebling Museum, and to the Brooklyn Bridge, and have heard Emily Roebling's story directly from "herself" (also created by Mark Violi and excellently performed by Carol), but I really wanted to see the play. I was able to usher for the nearly sold out show.

The show reminded me a lot of the first person re-enactor I have heard, which is why i wasn't surprised to read on the website they were both created by the same person. 

The talk back featured the actors, the playwright, and Clifford Zink (Roebling historian). In the lobby they sold Zink's book, and souvenirs from the company. People asked excellent questions during the talk back, and I meant to note them sooner. One was about the villain -- Mr. Dickey. He was a conglomeration of different people who tried to thwart the Roeblings. Violi gave him a son to better emphasize the father/son dynamics between the Dickeys vs. the Roeblings.

The two actresses had familial ties to Roebling -- each had a relative who worked for them.

One of the characters was killed off in the play (E.F.), but in real life lived to see the bridge completed.

This is why whenever the opportunity arises, I aim to get the inside scoop.

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