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Good Theater (Virtual or Otherwise) is About Good Storytelling

Actors from the Jewish Women’s Theatre are collaborating with the Women’s Theatre Festival on a performance this week to make the isolation of the coronavirus pandemic feel a little less lonely.

Through a series of eight different vignettes, Inside Our Time: Stories From the Sheltering, which is being presented as part of the Women’s Theatre Festival’s Fringe program, casts a spotlight on the struggles, frustrations and unexpected joys of living under quarantine.

Some of the stories are familiar global pandemic common threads, like not being able to visit family members in nursing homes or worrying about elderly parents or family members. But there is a newness in listening to the cast read each writer’s story. The first-person accounts create a feeling of intimacy. The virtual audience is transported into each writer’s home and given detailed insights into family histories, dynamics and routines.

For example, in the story “Dear Dad,” Jennifer Roth Krieger mourns the recent death of her mother by detailing why daily visits with her father are so important. Kimberly Anton compares her travel adventures to quarantining with her family in her story “Staying,” and reveals why quarantining together is still memorable.

Good theater is simply good storytelling, and each solo performance in this production plays to the strengths of the virtual theater format, giving the audience a chance to connect directly to the actors through the fourth wall. Many of the stories presented as part of Inside Our Time: Stories From the Sheltering convey the sentiment that simply living is something that has been getting harder and harder since January. But in the end, each story  looks forward to coming out of this shared crisis with more strength, wisdom, hope and love than before.

Inside our Time: Stories From the Sheltering will be presented again this Saturday, July 25th. For more information or to purchase tickets, visit https://wtvirtualf2020.sched.com/overview/type/WTFringe.

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