I have been thinking a lot about Ritorno lately. Last Friday, I was interviewed about my experience at Hampshire College, and for the first time in a long time, was made to talk a lot about my Division III. I talk about my show all the time with prospective students and families, since I’ve been working in Admissions all summer, but there’s only so much detail you can get into while walking backwards and trying to give everyone a good idea of what Hampshire is like as a college.
As I’ve mentioned before, my committee chair really encouraged me to continue work on Ritorno after the fact; he said I had a lot of good ideas here that could really become something great with more time and work. I wholeheartedly agreed with him, and still do. But for a while, I needed a break. I had been too close to the project, and I wanted to branch out and try different things. And I still want to be doing lots of different things.
But at lunch today, I decided to listen to my Italian music on shuffle, and I heard a couple of the songs that I had used in my show. And I started thinking again. About ways to make it longer, better, more involved. About ways to get some of my old cast/crew in on the show with me. About whether or not conducting this show outside of the safety of a Div III project is feasible or even wise.
I don’t know when it’s going to happen. I’m not entirely sure how, either. But I know that I love this show. After 3-ish months of separation and a lot of time to think about it, I can fully realize how proud I am of the work I did, and how cool some of my themes are. I want to continue sharing this with an audience. I want to share new stories with audiences, too.
I want to explore the very thin line between being Italian and being American – and when those lines intersect (because they most certainly do). I want to reach out to people who grew up in families where what was done in the house was very different than what society projected as the typical American home life. I want to speak to the Italian experience; I want to speak to the experience of 1st and 2nd generation Americans who grew up in immigrant households.
I want to talk about war, and peace, and poverty, and family, and love, and the human condition. I want to talk about my ideas of womanhood and being a woman. I want to talk about mythology, and science, and faith.
I’m not done with Ritorno. I should have known when I named the show that I would never stop coming back to it, that I wouldn’t be able to leave it be. This show is too personal to be put on a shelf somewhere and forgotten about. This show is born of my experience and my knowledge, and those are two areas of my life that are ever-expanding.
So once again – I don’t know how long it will be until the show goes up again. But I know that I’ll be back here every now and then, with hopefully more regularity than before. As of right now, I am more officially re-opening Project: Ritorno.