Nimbus Theater's latest work, A Life of Days written by Liz Neerland and directed by Josh Cragun is a quiet, contemplative and beautiful story. The show, which explores the idea of solitude, family, and relationships between people starts when Callie and David, two park rangers scouting newly designated wilderness area stumble upon the camp of Vera, a woman who has spent her entire life living in the wilderness and has lived in solitude for 16 years since the death of her brother. Her family had fled into the woods in 1962, expecting an imminent nuclear war. Vera was born after they fled civilization and is the last remaining member of her family. She is living in solitude believing that the country was destroyed in a great nuclear war in the early 60s, and if there are people outside the forests, there is a high chance they are Soviets. Throughout the play we get to see both present day Vera interacting with the new visitors, both parties sharing stories of their worlds, and the Vera of the past when she shared the camp with her brother, and told stories remembering the significant days from their past.
The play is one of the more quieter shows that I have attended. The dialogue is filled with silences and there are many pauses. These felt intentional and useful, allowing the dialogue to set the pace of the life portrayed in A Life of Days. The set filled with wood and timely props designed by Brian Hesser was beautiful and was very effective in bringing the audience into the location. The multiple leveled set also allowed for a good amount of movement in the show and different set ups that led to very smooth transitions between the present and the past.
The five member cast made up a strong ensemble that set the mood and effectively told the story. The cast comprised of Delta Rae Giordano, Brid Henry, Cate Jackson, Nicholas Nelson and Gregory Yang was filled with actors that I had seen on a Nimbus stage before and some faces that were new to me, but all of which I hope to see more of in the future.
A Life of Days is playing at the Crane Theater through November 26th. It is a great show for anyone who is a fan of a long walk in the woods or spending some time alone with their thoughts. Click here for more information about the show and how to get tickets.
*Photo by Emmett Kowler