13 November 2021

Open Letter to Steve Martin and Edie Brickell

Mr. Martin and Ms. Brickell,

For the past several weeks I have had the pleasure of attempting to decipher Daddy Murphy for Elkhart Civic Theatre's production of Bright Star. Our production process has been fraught with unexpected difficulties, yet also a delight due in no small part to the way your script draws people into a story that matters.

Thank you for writing a musical with complicated characters who entrench and resist and regret and change and adapt, sometimes all at once. Thank you for writing a sweeping tale of pain and redemption (ahem) that never veers so far toward either that it becomes easy to watch or perform—a story that remains ambiguous and challenging throughout. Thank you for a story that prompts performers to leave the stage sometimes weeping openly at the sheer beauty and kindness and smallness and ridiculousness of humanity.

Thank you.

Brent Graber

PS: We opened our two weekend run on November 12, 2021. Tickets are still available for our performances on November 13, 14, 19, 20, and 21. You know, in case you want to remind yourselves how good you are.