Sunday, July 14, 2024

Escape the Overwhelming Present for 80 minutes! See HICK @ 5pm!

 

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July 14, 2024


Last HICK 5pm Today!

Escape the Overwhelming Present for 80 minutes!

(Links & Info @ bottom of blog)



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My last performance for HICK: A LOVE STORY will be 5pm today at The Marsh. I've grown so much over the last six weeks as an actress. (I like "actress" more than "actor." It's more glamorous.) I'll be sorry to leave these two wonderful women. I don't know when I'll see them again.


I'm having a Q&A with the audience after, in honor of it being the last show. And then we (at least Joyce and I) will put in an appearance at the very good Indian restaurant, Aslam Rasoi, across the street. Please join us, if you wish.


Terry

When FDR became

President

in 1932,

his wife had a lesbian lover...


BEST OF 2019 SAN FRANCISCO FRINGE

"Valiant, valuable & vivid." -- Baltimore Sun


FINAL SHOW!

Sunday, July 14, 2024

@ 5pm

THE MARSH

1062 Valencia St., San Francisco

(near 24th St. BART)

Tickets

Parking Info


Friday, July 12, 2024

HICK Meets AI!

 

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July 10, 2024


HICK Meets AI!

+

This Sunday is the LAST Show!

(Links & Info @ bottom of blog)



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I checked out Evite to see if that was a way to publicize my performances. It turned out it wasn't. They charge a hefty service fee for every ticket sold. But in the process of engaging with the website, I was offered the services of AI to help me come up with publicity content. I declined but that didn't matter. AI decided to participate on its own, and came up with this:


Get ready for a down-home,

country-fried love story

with

HICK: A Love Story

It's gonna be a hootenanny y'all won't wanna miss!


I laughed so hard. AI, you sure went down the wrong wormhole with this one!


I hope some of you will make it to my very last outing. I'm getting better and better. Last Sunday, I felt very loose, in a good way. I felt like I wasn't just playing the part, I was playing WITH the part. Joyce, my stage manager, is the ultimate connoisseur of my performance, having seen it so many times. She said it was my best ever. That might be true. My friend Susan sent a bunch of her friends to the show, and two of them texted their appreciation to her and used the word "phenomenal." I don't think anyone has ever described the show with that word.


I don't take the good reviews personally. Contrary to getting a swelled head, I always have the feeling that they're talking about someone standing right next to me. But "phenomenal" is a pretty nice word.


And now, the same old info about the show, with links for tickets at the bottom:



THE MARSH PRESENTS

Terry Baum in

HICK: A LOVE Story

Based on Eleanor Roosevelt's 2336 Letters to Lorena Hickok


When FDR became

President

in 1932,

his wife had a lesbian lover...


BEST OF 2019 SAN FRANCISCO FRINGE

"Valiant, valuable & vivid." -- Baltimore Sun


FINAL SHOW!

Sunday, July 14, 2024

@ 5pm



THE MARSH

1062 Valencia St., San Francisco

(near 24th St. BART)


Tickets

Parking Info


Friday, July 5, 2024

BIDEN'S PERFORMANCE & MINE

 

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JULY 6 2024


Biden's Performance... and Mine


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BIDEN'S PERFORMANCE


"The Presidency is a performance." That was the last thing that Lawrence O'Donnell, the MSNBC host, said months ago when there started to be talk of finding another Democratic Presidential nominee. O'Donnell spent a whole program piling up evidence to convince his viewers that replacing Biden as the nominee would be a catastrophe. It seemed strange to me that he ended on that note, because President Biden has never been a consistently good performer.


The Presidency is a performance. This seems to me an important and profound statement. Any position of leadership has an aspect of performance to it. Franklin Delano Roosevelt was the quintessential performer. He'd give a rousing speech that filled the audience with optimism and strength at moments when all looked grim. Then he'd roll back into the White House drained, exhausted by his effort. FDR's upbeat cheerfulness was an important aspect of his leadership. He gave people hope.


Joe Biden has done good things. He has been a far better President than I expected. I'm grateful for the landmark environmental bill, for support for Ukraine. The economy is doing well. All the statistics say that, despite the inflation.


But Biden has not been able to CONVINCE the majority of people that the economy is doing well.


He convinced the leaders of Western Europe to support the Ukraine. But he has not convinced Americans that the economy has recovered.


Part of being President is convincing the people that you have done good things. Biden has not been able to do this.


The Presidency is a performance.


Early in the Democratic primaries in 2020, Biden repeatedly came in last. It wasn't that he didn't win. He was last. I never understood why the Democratic power structure continued to support the worst performer. The seeds of that disastrous "debate" with Trump, which we just witnessed, were planted then. There were many good candidates in the primaries. The Big Dems didn't have to switch their weight to Bernie, who was certainly the best performer. They could have switched to someone milder, more compliant. But no, the Big Dems remained committed to one of their own. I'm looking at you, Rep. Pelosi.


In the end of the 2020 primaries, the Big Dems succeeded in shoving Biden down our throats. That's how I felt about it. I did everything I could, from my bluest of blue states, to elect him. I have been surprisingly satisfied with him -- except of course for his shameful failure to stand up to Netanyahu and stop delivering Israel the means to slaughter innocent Gazans.


But even so, I was completely willing to throw myself into the Biden campaign, because Trump would be horrific on the issue of Gaza. No question he would happily give Israel the means to slaughter all Palestinians in Gaza AND the West Bank. Genocide of shithole people? That's Trump's kind of foreign policy!


But Biden's performance in the special debate that he himself requested was unforgivable. I cannot forgive him.


Biden gave 82 a bad name.


Hey, I'm 77. I'm only five years younger than Biden. I have friends who are 82. Even older! I have a friend who's 90 who's completely on the ball. Biden's performance was inexcusable.


It's not a matter of how good a President Biden has been.


It's not a matter of how much better even a senile Biden would be, compared to Trump.


It's a matter of his ability to get himself elected,

when his opponent is the quintessential performer.

And I don't believe that's a possibility.

Even if Biden never fails again,

video clips of this debate will be shown

incessantly by the Trump campaign.


So now all the Democrats are in despair. We all fear the certainty of losing to Trump. Some of us fear the certainty of losing if Biden is the candidate. Some of us fear the certainty of losing if Biden is NOT the candidate. But we all see the Doom of Trump barreling towards us and we are terrified.



MY PERFORMANCE


I perform at 5pm on Sunday. I woke up Sunday in despair, as did many people. But I knew I could not perform from the place of despair. I had a job to do. I had to become Lorena Hickok at 5pm and tell her story, in the deepest, most vivid way possible, to whoever showed up to hear it.


I struggled to push away my despair. In the end, I performed the entire play in my living room, as a way to build my concentration. That helped a lot.


Once I got to the theater and was in the dressing room, I felt fine. Theaters and dressing rooms are rarely lovely places. By definition, they have no windows or sunlight. But if you are a theater person, you are always at home in this (usually black) space. You are happy to be doing your work.


The audience that night was... how can I describe it? Disjointed, scattered in its response. "Audience" is singular. And indeed the audience somehow forms a unit during the performance. Two weeks ago, it was a totally silent unit -- but still a unit. This audience was not a unit. There would be a laugh here, a laugh there, a rustling in the back. I think these people, like me, were trying to concentrate, to turn away from the despair they also felt during the day.


When the play ended, many stood to applaud me. I felt good that we had joined together to contemplate Hick's world, Hick's story for an hour and a half.


And then a bunch of audience members and my stage manager and I went across the street to Aslam Rasoi and ate delicious Indian food and had a damn good time. And I went home to bed, feeling the satisfaction of doing a good job and the warmth of companionship and told myself I would probably feel despair again but not now, not that night. That night I was happy and satiated and I went to sleep.


All for now, Bloggellinnis. Below is info on HICK: A Love Story. ONLY TWO MORE WEEKS! Terry



THE MARSH PRESENTS

Terry Baum in

HICK: A LOVE Story

Based on Eleanor Roosevelt's 2336 Letters to Lorena Hickok

SUNDAYS THROUGH JULY 14



BEST OF 

SAN FRANCISCO FRINGE


"Valiant, valuable & vivid." -- Baltimore Sun


"A solo performance full of love, pain and eloquence. Baum is mesmerizing."

--DC Metro


Sundays, June 9-July 14 @ 5pm

(Masks Required on June 30)

THE MARSH San Francisco

1062 Valencia St., (near 24th St. BART)

$20-$35

Tickets

Parking Info











Thursday, July 4, 2024

The Joy of Suspension of Disbelief

 

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June 22 2024


HICK Blossoms!

Do Come!

Sundays 5pm thru July 14

(more info below)


PREVIOUS BLOGS: TERRYBAUM.BLOGSPOT.COM

PLEASE FORWARD THIS TO ANYONE WHO MIGHT BE INTERESTED.

PODCASTS, EVENTS, INFO, POSTERS: LilithTheater.com


Well, the first night wasn't exactly Theater Heaven, as I had hoped, but with the second performance, I hit my stride.


I mean, the only one dissatisfied after the first night was me (at least as far as I know). In the beginning I kept stumbling over my words. I call it bobbling. It's just a mental glitch, but if you fall into "Oh no! I'm bobbling!", you cannot get out of it. You have to somehow find the flow, but you can't say to the audience, "Folks, I need a couple of minutes here to focus," because then you've destroyed the illusion that you're Lorena Hickok. You become a human being PRETENDING you are Lorena Hickok. Which of course you are. Not only that, you're having a bit of trouble with the pretending business. So the audience starts worrying about you. About YOU, the human, not HICK, the character.


And there goes the suspension of disbelief. And that's the most wonderful thing about theater. The audience at some deep level forgets they're in a theater, forgets you're telling a story, forgets you're an actress playing a part. They leave their own world and enter the world you have created. I AM Hick. The empty space I'm talking to IS Eleanor Roosevelt. The invisible Eleanor and I HAVE just left the restaurant and are going to Hick's apartment to make love.


I just love that about theater. Suspension of disbelief doesn't really exist in other art forms. When you attend a ballet, you don't forget that the Black Swan and the White Swan are really dancers and not swans. When you listen to music, which is the art that most easily touches my emotions, I never forget I'm listening to people singing or playing instruments. And in movies, everything is done by the filmmaker to create the REALITY of the story, so that the audience doesn't have to imagine it. In a film, if Hick professes her love to Eleanor in the Russian Tea Room, you damn well rent the place so you can do the scene there!


But theater demands something different, and the audience glories in giving it (if you're not bobbling every few minutes and reminding them that you're an actress whose mouth can't seem to deliver the right words.)

Well, I finally righted the HICK ship, and was able to merge with Hick in the way I love. And I was rewarded in the last scene when Hick tears up one of Eleanor's letters. The whole audience gasped. Now, audience members had told me after a performance that they found Hick tearing up the letter shocking. But no one has ever audibly responded at the moment until June 9.


That gasp was very precious to me. I will never forget it. The audience had completely suspended its disbelief. At that moment, the piece of paper was not a prop. It was an actual letter from Eleanor to Hick, and they had witnessed its destruction.


In contrast, at the second performance, the audience was totally silent the whole time. I'd never experienced that before. I was used to being energized by the audience's laughte. There are many humorous moments in this very serious story. I started worrying -- was I doing something wrong? Were they refusing to get involved?


And then I righted myself. I said to myself, I'm here to tell Hick and Eleanor's amazing story, and it's alright if people don't laugh. I'm quite proud of myself for being able to adjust to the silence. And at the end, I was rewarded with the audience cheering what was perhaps my best performance ever.


Please do come see HICK: A LOVE STORY. My performance keeps changing -- enough so that people comment on the differences. I'm going much deeper emotionally, with the help of Sarah and Bill, my wonderful directors. All the info is below. Terry


THE MARSH PRESENTS


Terry Baum in

HICK: A LOVE Story

Based on Eleanor Roosevelt's 2336 Letters to Lorena Hickok


When FDR became

President

in 1932,

his wife had a lesbian lover...


BEST OF 2019 SAN FRANCISCO FRINGE

"Valiant, valuable & vivid." -- Baltimore Sun


June 9-July 14, 2024

Sundays @ 5pm

(Masks Required on June 30)


THE MARSH

1062 Valencia St., San Francisco

(near 24th St. BART)


Tickets

Parking Info