I was extremely lucky to get tickets to see the new production of Porgy and Bess starring Audra McDonald, Norm Lewis, and David Alan Grier. One of my friends from church choir is in the chorus, so I got tickets a few months ago before the show started getting such great reviews. If you are anywhere near NYC, have any appreciation for the human voice and/or jazz, and appreciate beauty in any way, you should see this show. The staging and direction were perfect, but it was the casting and the performances that make this show so magical. I sat silently sobbing through almost the entire thing. When Bryonha Marie Parham sang Serena’s “My Man’s Gone Now” it felt like she was channeling all the hurts of the world into that lament, like everything sad that ever existed was coming through her voice. The brilliance of the show is that we all feel like Porgy (“Born crippled. Born to be lonely”) but we all feel like Bess, too. It’s going to take a long time for the performance to leave me.
It’s been strange to be in my old city and realize how much it changes but how much it’s the same, too. New stores going in, old stores closing, but I went for a run around Gramercy Park this morning and still had to dodge puddles of dog pee and listen to too many conversations about real estate as I ran past groups of people.
I’ve seen so many friends, and that’s made it feel like home here. But I still can’t wait to get back home to Michigan later today. And I’m really, really ready to have my kids back, but that’s still a few more days away.