It’s been a while since I mentioned here on my blog that I have been commissioned to create a 90-minute storytelling piece on Abraham Lincoln to help celebrate the 200th anniversary of his birth in 2009. However, last night I turned in the title for it:
(drum roll, please)
“Of the People: Stories and Images of Abraham Lincoln.”
As I told my contacts at the Indiana History Center and Storytelling Arts of Indiana, this title makes me think of Lincoln being the first president of whom there were lots of photographs and other visual images for people to cherish (or curse) and therefore (I imagine) people felt a sense of ownership of him that they had never felt before for a president.
It makes me think of Lincoln growing up poor in a cabin without the chance to go to school, but devouring books on his own…and eventually becoming president. Which, theoretically, means that anyone could do it.
It makes me think of Lincoln dealing with things that we all have to deal with at one point or another in our lives, everything from the loneliness of unpopularity to the grief of losing a family member.
And, of course, it makes me think of his famous Gettysburg Address. Say it with me, if you want: “Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent a new nation, conceived in liberty….”
Actually, that pithy little speech is a mouthful to memorize. But the ending still packs a wallop: “…that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain – that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom – and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.”
This storytelling piece will premiere at the Indiana History Center at 4:00 on Sunday, January 18, 2009.
Coming much sooner: a review of a very fun evening upstairs at the Milano Inn participating in the Mystery Cafe’s production of “Pizza Driver,” by Nita Hardy.
Hope Baugh – www.IndyTheatreHabit.com