Wednesday, December 14, 2011

This must be me being ignorant, but when people make nice comments on this blog I want to be able to write to them, and say thank you.

Their addresses are hidden from me, so all I can do is put them up again, here, and write back here too.

Jo, I loved your play - it was just so brilliant. it was hard to hear the mocking of my faith but I realised that there was a purpose - to challenge, in the end, those doing the mocking but not in vindictively as is so often the way in our "got to be right all the time" culture, but in a rediscovery from experience. Hilary and I talked about the play for ages - and now I am off to read it again to grapple with the bits I missed.

Thank you

Hi Jo. I am the person whose partner asked you if you had anything to do with the play, and I was glad to shake your hand last night. We talked and talked about the play all evening, and sitting next to you meant such a lot to Merlin, he was very moved by your reaction to seeing the play realised, and has talked all weekend about what a privilege that was. He studied philosophy at university, so was fascinated by the re-imagined Hume and Smith, and I work for a violence against women charity, so Eve's story really resonated with me. We're so so glad we were able to see this fantastic play and so glad you were happy with the first night. Wishing you all the best for the rest of the run and all else that lies ahead!

I went to see Tree of Knowledge last night, a packed house. As I got up the stranger next to me turned to me and asked me spontaneously if I had enjoyed it, and I told her yes (I had been sitting between her and her teenage daughter and teenage daughter's friends, who had started restless and ended enthralled), and we shared mutual appreciation of how wonderful it had been - she said "It gives you hope, doesn't it?" and I said yes, but more than that - I hadn't seen a play in years that made me think as I watched it - think, laugh, feel sad - it's brilliant. In the middle of a fairly miserable week, it made me not forget my problems, but reconsider them. I bought three copies of the script as I left, quelling a slightly mad impulse to buy 50 and give a copy to everyone I know.

Thank you, all of you, for these. I am trying to write something that moves people deeply, in a variety of ways, that stimulates people to think about the world we all live in.

And think about it in a hopeful, empowering way.

I do intend it to be a political play - but not in the sense that it denounces or despairs.

I am angry with the established churches - I hate the way they have been behaving over gay marriage. I hate the way they selectively use scripture to support their prejudices. I hate the way they are so unchristian.

When Hume denounces them, he sometimes speaks with my voice. But even when he denounces the "canting Christians" he behaves in a truly Christian way.

It’s lovely if people feel at the end that yes, there is hope, and that small gestures count as well as large ones.

But I must remind myself, once again, that beyond satisfying myself I have done all I can, I have no business judging this play.

It’s up to everyone who watches it.
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