Somatic psychologists study the science of trauma getting stuck in our bodies. As we head into our third year of this pandemic, you must have secret caverns of mourning. Perhaps you store plump pockets of self-soothing. You have places deep inside you’ve retreated / walls you’ve constructed to fortify yourself in these destabilizing times.

There is a reduction of resilience in us all. Like Samuel Beckett opined, “You must go on; I can’t go on; I’ll go on”, and you do.

Attending a live performance can light up your shadowy parts so the bats can empty. Oh, I see, you like your bats? For you dear reader, attending a live performance reminds you how to love your cavernous self. To acknowledge the way you move, breathe, and blink outside a safe, dark theater. To honor that you are going on. You take up space.

Artistic Affiliate Jim Ortlieb sent us this fantastic script as we grappled with our return. We couldn’t think of a better way to ease into this new reality of living with our collective trauma.

We’re thrilled to present the Chicago premiere of John Kolvenbach’s Stand Up If You’re Here Tonight and work with such exceptional artists.

May your grief loosen.

May you feel a little less stuck.

– Gwendolyn Whiteside

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