DIRECTOR'S NOTE | "Next to Normal"

Sometimes, the universe gives us an experience so full and authentic it cracks us open. Next to Normal has been in my heart and mind and soul for 7 years, since my son Zachary, in college on the East Coast, called at intermission in tears and said…”Mom…this show…” and I’ve wanted to work on it ever since.

There are three lyrics I’d like you to listen for please…because I think they hold the heartbeat of the story. These are the lessons we can cultivate enough courage to hear and act on so we can move forward and I think these are what make Next to Normal so important:

The doctor tells Diana at one point:

Admit what you’ve lost

And live with the cost

At times it does hurt to be healed

Natalie tells us:

Give me clouds, and rain, and gray.

Give me pain if that’s what’s real

It’s the price we pay to feel

And Diana shares with us:

And you find out you don’t have to be happy at all

To be happy you’re alive

There is great hope in this story but it’s only possible with the courage that comes from accepting this human life of ours in all its complexity and pain and beauty.

This cast, band, and creative team have worked some magic here, I have to thank Sheila Weindendorf who was the only one I knew could hold this, Verna Everitt who took away the fences, David Mackie who created this set and lighting and gave us a pallet to grow in, the WICA Board and Staff for all the support, and my boys, my family for letting me break open my heart…and not walking away.”

 Deana Duncan


Next to Normal | Apr 05-20, 2019