Here I am in the park, waiting for the Classical Theatre of Harlem’s production of The Bakchai to start. Shortly after I slipped into a state of entheos that did not lift until well after we got home.
No matter how familiar you are with this play there is nothing quite like seeing it performed live. The leads were phenomenal, especially the aftermath of the interrogation scene where a tarted up Pentheus, with breaking voice, begs Dionysos to make him beautiful; they touch foreheads for a pregnant moment and the God responds, “You are.” Fuck, man. I’m tearing up just typing this, many hours later – that’s how good it was.
But don’t take my word for it – here’s my wife’s account, from a letter she wrote to the company. Our household made a sizable donation to these sacred artisans of Dionysos and will definitely be attending future productions, though I think it’ll be tough for them to top this one.