Historical theater is something very near and dear to my heart. I was spurred to read Mark Twain as a kid thanks to a TV broadcast of Hal Holbrook's seminal, long-running show dramatizing the life and wit of Mr. Clemens. One of my favorite local productions was Swift Creek Mill's production of "Diary of Anne Frank" starring my lovely wife and Paul Deiss. I spent a semester studying 19th century theater, finding out how vital it was to the building of American culture and how instrumental it was in spurring the Civil War (via stage adaptations of Uncle Tom's Cabin). Scott Wichmann's astounding work in "I Am My Own Wife" remains one of most riveting performances I've ever seen.
Starting tonight, the JCC will be running a production of 'Golda's Balcony' starring one of Richmond's finest actresses, Jackie Jones in the story of Israel's Golda Meir. The weather might get in the way this weekend but you should try to find a chance to see it. Beyond what will undoubtedly be a bravura performance by Ms. Jones, it's a great opportunity to take in some fascinating history in an easy-to-digest and entertaining format. History lives via this kind of theater and theater lives by making this kind of history vital and relevant.