Below is the Artistic Director's note from the program for Tuesdays with Morrie. In it he discusses why ISTC chose to do this show, and what it means for the age of corona.
"The hardest thing I’ve ever done"
We were shooting some video promotional for Tuesdays With Morrie. Benjamin Sheridan, playing Mitch, and Tom Geraty, playing Morrie, each spoke about working on the show, and Tom popped out a quote that surprised me.
“This is the hardest thing I’ve done in 36 years of theater.”
The pandemic has forced changes across the globe, and the arts are some of the most heavily impacted. Iowa Stage Theatre alone lost 40% of our season and we have no idea when it will be safe to return to in-person performance. ISTC has turned to virtual performances to continue to connect with our audiences.
But the struggles of a theater company pale in comparison to the struggles of those dealing with illness, loss, and loneliness in a quarantine. There are some 24,000 Iowans in nursing homes, often unable to be with their families. Those who have died during covid have often been alone.
Tuesdays With Morrie is the heartwarming and heartbreaking story of a young man, Mitch Albom, who reconnects with his college mentor 16 years later. Professor Morrie Schwartz is dying of ALS, Lou Gehrig’s disease, and in the Tuesdays he has left teaches Mitch that dying can show us how to live.
We have re-set this story of life, love, and loss as a series of Zoom calls, to capture the way we live now. We find ways to be together even while we are forced apart. Though times are hard, we are here for one another. Even amidst so much loss, there is love.