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The Velocity of Autumn

Estelle Pasons

By Susan Rushton

This work by the young playwright Eric Coble swirls around Alexandra, a colorful 79-year-old artist in a showdown with her family over where she’ll spend her twilight years. To make her position perfectly clear, Alexandra has barricaded herself in her Brooklyn brownstone with enough homemade explosives (mostly made of wine bottles) to take out the entire neighborhood. Into this tense situation comes her long-lost son Chris, crawling through her apartment window to becomes the family’s unlikely mediator.

The Velocity of Autumn
Wed, Nov 18 and
Thu, Nov 19, 7:30pm
St Paul’s Parish Hall
Cardo 6
20 pesos donation

On Broadway they advertised it this way: “She’s going out with a bang: one mother, one son, 100 Molotov cocktails.”

On a serious level, The Velocity of Autumn is fundamentally a study of a woman of intelligence and will wrestling with the inevitable diminishments that come with age. Alexandra’s real enemies are not the officious family pressuring her to leave her home … or the police. No, the real foes are harder to vanquish: the small daily humiliations that age brings, the legs that no longer work, the mind and memory that cloud up. “Proper nouns are the first thing to leave the body,” Alexandra complains. However, she hasn’t yet lost her sense of humor: now she can reread her favorite mysteries without remembering whodunit!

The Velocity of Autumn is both a wickedly funny and wonderfully touching revelation of the ferocity and fragility of life. Although the play deals with sad issues concerning the indignities of aging, as Alexandra refuses to go gentle into that good night, she entertains us with profound insights into the beauty and transitory nature of human existence.

Two of San Miguel’s most talented and seasoned actors bring this delectable script to life.

Lola Smith plays the irascible Alexandra. John Wharton takes the role of her truant son, Chris.

Lou Barranti is the technical consultant. I direct.


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