We’ll Do the Best We Know

I left my camera in the theatre, it’s Monday morning already, and I’m too tired to go back and fetch it. So thanks to CameraMan for this wonderful post-perf photo of our Pangloss, Cunegonde and Candide.

So many creative and generous people made this evening’s Candide a magnetic night at the theatre. I couldn’t possibly thank them all, so I can only hope that the music was its own reward.

This piece contradicts itself at every turn. Simultaneously bawdy and noble, trite and genuine, guarded and naked. So I suppose it’s appropriate that this exhausting weekend has left me wistful, angry, proud, and sad – all at the same time.

“Make Our Garden Grow” can be a cloying parody of itself when approached with too much indulgence. But our peerless maestro was determined not to allow the finale to descend into sentimentality. He understands that its power lies in a clear-headed understanding that embracing all of the ambiguities of life is really our only option. So those last few minutes of Candide were delivered with determination and clarity. And as always, in the face of such courage, I cried.

We are not what we were, nor do we wish to be.

We’re neither pure, nor wise, nor good.
We’ll do the best we know.

And we did indeed.

One Comment

Northern Virginia Music Lover

Kim the Candide was fabulous in every way. I am in love with Ann Carolyn and Dominic. I didn’t miss at all your originally announced Old Lady, Ms. Van Eyck was terrific, as was the rest of the cast. The orchestra was fantastic. What a luxury to have that symphonic sound. But the best part was at the end, when the orchestra drops out, and you are left with eight-part a capella vocal writing, the pure beauty of the massed human voice, louder and more beautiful than I’ve ever heard. I cried from the sheer beauty and humaneness of it. I am about to lose it, just thinking about it.
I know Lenny would be (maybe even is) loving it. He couldn’t have a better birthday present.

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