Perseverance Theatre Comes Home to Fun Home to Close our 43rd Season!
It is with great joy that we welcome you to our production of Fun Home adapted by the Tony-Award-Winning playwright and composing team, Lisa Kron and Jeanine Tessori!
Fun fact: Fun Home is adapted from Alison Bechdel’s 2006 graphic memoir of the same name.
We were clear that when the Covid-19 pandemic shuttered our production of Fun Home in March of 2020, we would bring this important work back to our stage and here we are! This season represents our staff’s wholehearted perseverance.
More Fun Facts: Fun Home is the first Broadway musical with a Lesbian protagonist and our stage director, Hannah Wolf, is one of very few Lesbian female directors to direct this musical in the American Theatre. This production also marks the first time that Perseverance Theatre is centering an LGBTQ+ story and its Alaska LGBTQ+ artists and communities on its mainstage. After being closed and working remotely/virtually, we had to come home for Fun Home.
Even more Fun Facts: Again, I proudly lift-up the leadership of born and raised Juneau-ite, Hannah Wolf, who celebrates a twenty-year relationship with Perseverance! I also proudly lift-up the LGBTQ+ cast, crew, musicians, and staff who are also supported by the leadership of Gary Busby, Maestro/Musical Director, Joseph Biagini, Associate Producer, ErinMarie Suscheck, Stage Manager, and Sarah Brownstein, Assistant Stage Manager.
During rehearsals, I had the honor of witnessing Hannah’s “joy practice,” where the company took turns to invite each other to play and engage in what brings them joy—from dance parties to meditation to sharing their art to playing hide ‘n seek and more. This practice brought laughter and creative freedom that illuminated even more the dark humor and the pain of Fun Home’s characters’ unconscious/conscious unfulfillment. Experiencing the vulnerabilities and deep revelations of these complex characters, we witness the societal repression that a mainstream heteronormative stipulates of LGBTQ+ Peoples. Lisa Kron and Jeanine Tessori profoundly reveal this depth of loss and the high cost of internalized homophobia at this time when legislation and the dominant culture continues to threaten lives and take away the human rights of our LGBTQ+ communities.
So, I must ask myself these questions: In my heart, where am I repressed because I’m afraid of being vulnerable? How does this unconsciously/consciously dehumanize the LGBTQ+ community because what was/is normal is changing? Does this make me unconsciously/consciously complicit with expecting all to live in a binary world—in the rigid rules of bygone heteronormativity because it’s “normal and how we’ve always done?”
More Questions: How can I use my privilege for good to foster a culture where myself and others can be their full selves—fully human 100% of the time? I can start with deepening my listening and respect for how my family members, neighbors, classmates, colleagues identify. I also pledge to use the pronouns they have shared for me to respectfully refer to them.
As you have done by engaging in our production of Fun Home, we must continue our learning about the challenges, heartbreaks, and triumphs of the LGBTQ+ Community. We must keep learning together and support each other’s vulnerabilities for greater actions and accountability towards the needed changes that the LGBTQ+ Communities aspire to accomplish.
Perseverance looks forward to continuing to use our stage and platforms to center the stories of our most underrepresented, our most marginalized. Join us as we evolve our learning and joy practice with updated terminology and effective advocacy, so we produce theatre to engage and experience each other as fully human 100% of the time.
My heartfelt gratitude to you, our audience, and all of our donors and supporters, as a voyager with us through this season and through this unprecedented time as we are paranormally haunted by all that is pressing globally and at home. Your tremendous support has kept us alive and continuing to recover through this pandemic!
For sharing your brilliant artistry and vulnerabilities, my deepest Japanese bow to all of the creative teams, casts, crew, musicians, and the Alaska Native/Indigenous, Black and Thai Communities, the LGBTQ+ Community and our mighty staff of this season. Your vulnerability helps each of us to grow our trust in one another that sows transformative societal change. We keep making theatre because it can and will free us collectively.
What an important note to end on this season!
Enjoy the journey that is Fun Home!
P.S. Stay tuned for details about our STAR Program this summer!
We can’t wait to welcome you back in the Fall—and please stay safe with LOVE and JOY!