And They Dance Real Slow in Jackson

cast photo from Hesston College production of And They Dance Real Slow in Jackson

Director’s note

This has been a tough show to direct and tougher to watch. It shows me things I don’t wish to see and it makes me uncomfortable.

Elizabeth sits in her wheelchair in complete darkness. We hear her sing a child’s tune, despite her age of 24. Out of the darkness, we hear voices that seem kind, but quickly turn to taunting. These are the voices in Elizabeth’s head, the voices of the town that have left negative marks on her. As the lights brighten, the audience witnesses various events in Elizabeth’s life, leading us to learn, through an ugly event, why she has become so very isolated.

The story is a familiar struggle, but we still can’t seem to get it right. This show wrestles with how we treat those we don’t fully understand and the consequences for one young woman when that understanding isn’t offered.

Why did I choose this play? I figure, if I’m uncomfortable with the plot, maybe I should ask those who are at the heart of it and hurting, how I can help to change it.