I’ll Have A Merlot With My Derangement This Evening

I caught this on MPR last week; arts reporter Marianne Combs’s piece on the new season at the Guthrie, featuring the new “Trump Derangement” theme:

This fall, the Guthrie will stage Lillian Hellman’s “Watch on the Rhine.” The show deals with the rise of fascism on American soil at the start of World War II, but Haj says it feels startlingly relevant today.

“There’s a line in the play that says something like, ‘We don’t send people back — we’re Americans. That’s not what we do.’ And that line was written in 1941,” Haj said. “The reason we do the classics is not to look at plays or stories under glass; it’s to understand that many of these classic texts have absolute resonances to our current times.”

The Guthrie follows “Watch on the Rhine” with Noel Coward’s “Blithe Spirit,” which at first might seem like a non sequitur. But Haj explained that Noel Coward, a contemporary of Hellman, wrote the play at the onset of World War II.

The message – “we, the Guthrie’s artistic directors, believe we’re living in times just like 11933 Germany; we believe our audience is like the British of 1940, who need something to take their mind off being firebombed every night”.

But don’t dare accuse anyone of Trump derangement!

5 thoughts on “I’ll Have A Merlot With My Derangement This Evening

  1. <I“There’s a line in the play that says something like, ‘We don’t send people back — we’re Americans.

    MS St. Louis. These elites are historical illiterates hang up on alternative talking points universe.

  2. It used to be that theologians helped us define the moral code. Now, we’ve relinquished this to artistic directors? We might be in trouble.

  3. DMA, I have the same question, can’t find current taxpayer contribution info although I know they’re a non-profit. I think the state did some bonding stuff to the tune of ~$250M back in 2003 but not sure of all the facts

  4. JPA, these elite doesn’t mean you actually know anything, it merely means that you have the “correct” set of opinions on the topic du jour.

    It was the great “liberal icon” FDR who turned away the Jews and set up the Holocaust. If we were to learn from history we’d be welcoming Christians and other non-Muslims from the Middle East, but for some reason today’s “liberals” are unwilling to allow religion to color any policies.

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