Wilderness

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It’s amazing how you can live in New York your whole life, know the name of an institution and know nothing about it until a chance brush with one of its programs. Last night, Dale bought tickets to “Wilderness,” which is a production of En Garde Arts and is being performed at the Abrons Arts Center on Grand Street, which is part of the Henry Street Settlement.

We took a quick taxi ride down the FDR Drive to Grand Street, then a short ride west to the rather lovely and comfortable theater, which reminded me somehow of the auditorium at PS-187. The crowd was a mix of the same kind of people you see at the more well-known theatre clubs with a large dollop of student types — a reminder of the number of undergraduate and graduate schools in the southern part of Manhattan.

“Wilderness” was written by Ann Hamburger and Seth Bockley, both of whom have terrific credentials. It’s performed by a cast of talented young people, most newly graduated from Pace University. Hamburger writes, “Life takes unexpected turns and we can never prepare ourselves for what lies ahead as parents, as humans. When an intervention became necessary with my own child, I began to explore the struggles of other families. I embraced the process of discovery around the complexities of parenting and acted upon my need – as a mother, artist and producer – to help lift the veil of secrecy and shame around the issues of mental health.” Among other things in her busy life, Hamburger is an adjunct professor at Columbia’s Graduate School of the Arts.

Please see the New York Times review.

Doug Anderson

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