Posted by Artistic Director Robert Falls
I have been a fan of Alan Gross’ work since my early days in the Chicago theater. In the late 1970s he established himself as one of our city’s truly original voices with such plays as Lunching and The Man in 605, using his mordant wit and expansive humanity to examine in loving, sometimes savage detail the vagaries of human relationships. Although he continued writing plays for both the stage and screen, he has also explored other literary forms, where his finely observed musings on human actions and emotions have brought him particular success,
not surprisingly, in the world of poetry.
When Alan returned from a stint in Hollywood several years ago, I encouraged him to write what would eventually become High Holidays. I think it is his best work to date, containing both the subversive humor and passionate characterizations that distinguished his earlier plays, but with a newly forged maturity and command. Drawing from memories of his Chicago boyhood, Alan has captured the tensions, the celebrations and the uncertainties that are familiar to all of us. He examines the complexities of the relationships—between husband and wife, parent and son, brother and brother—that are echoed in every family. In his own words, Alan notes that “what emerged was a story about growing up—all of its joys, challenges and disappointments—and ultimately, what it takes to become a man.”
The distinctive humor and humanity of Alan Gross have been missing from our stages for far too long. It is a great pleasure to welcome him back.
We’d love to know what you thought about High Holidays! Please share your comments about the play with us, below!