Vincent's Yellow

a[n] [auto]biography and a love story.

The Dive

photography by Shannon O'Neil

I jumped — high and far, and twirling.

Vincent’s Yellow opened in Chicago, IL last Thursday, on the 120th anniversary of Vincent van Gogh’s death.

I performed — my cast and I performed — this thing that has been so intimately tucked between my blood vessels, that has been continuously beating quietly alongside my heart for three years, whether or not anyone heard it. This project, this man who saved me from beyond the grave, who changed my life so significantly I turned my own life upside down for him, for whom I made personal and financial sacrifices… but who has always guided me truly, and rightly. (That is, right back to doing what I was meant to do, and thus myself.)

photography by Shannon O'Neil

Performing in this work is as natural as breathing… or perhaps climbing a mountain is a better metaphor (or I suppose a high dive was the original metaphor I chose). It is not easy, it is exhausting and utterly challenging; it is two hours filled with wonder and vitality. It is a constant, driven force, focused by fierce passion and precision. I have used (I believe) every talent I have to make this show what it is, and I have demanded no less than real Truth, real Beauty, and total commitment.

photography by Shannon O'Neil

The piece is also highly demanding of my actors. Yet my wonderful, amazing ensemble meets the challenges I set them with incredible grace and perseverance. They impress me constantly, bringing 19th century words to vibrating life, becoming paint through dance, and making sweet music and even sweeter love for those that have come to visit.

Opening weekend was a waterfall. I will be chewing over the past week for a long time to come. A critic came opening night and told me she was dazzled. I’ll leave the rest of what she told me for her to put in her review, but needless to say, I was very, very pleased. I have gotten a few responses to my show that were overflowing with gratitude.

I, for one, feel most grateful to have this opportunity, to truly show what I have to give, and to sing and dance and breathe and speak to Vincent for the rest of this month. Last year at this time, I was packing my bags for my YellowEurope trip, for Amsterdam, and for all the rest that would await me (all I could never have imagined). I would spend a month tracking you, Vincent. Now I get to spend a month loving you. Completely and utterly.

This is all I can truly grasp right now. Until soon, readers…

Don’t forget to buy your tickets if you can attend; I have a feeling once the review comes out tickets may begin disappearing quickly…

I will end with a quote of his to which I keep returning:

Thus about my work, thus about my person.
— Vincent van Gogh, August 18, 1885

I couldn’t agree more.

Tue, August 3 2010 » Personal

2 Responses

  1. Judy Veramendi August 4 2010 @ 06:49

    Beautiful and deeply moving!

  2. Teresa September 10 2010 @ 17:44


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