If so, do I have a recommendation for you! Last night, I saw a moving meditation on the experience of soldiers and their families in times of war (including the Iraq war). It is called Elliot, A Soldier's Fugue
, and it is playing at 45 Below @ The Culture Project (45 Bleecker Street):
At 18, Lance Corporal Elliot Oritz crossed over to Iraq. At 19, he received the Purple Heart. Now, back from active duty, Elliot is anointed a hometown hero. As he comes to terms with his memories of war, he uncovers the military experiences of both his father and grandfather, discovering the delicate link that unites the Ruiz men across time.
While ostensibly about soldiers at war, the play is also about families of soldiers at war:
Driven by their passions and memories, with consciences shaped by guilt and hope, these three men mine the black holes of war. As Elliot's tale moves back in time, the stories of his father, mother and grandfather move forward until past and present inevitably collide, wringing love and beauty from devastation. Melding poetic dreamscape with stream-of-consciousness narrative, 'Elliot, A Soldier's Fugue' explores unspoken connections between individuals, across time and generations.
The soldiers in this play (three generations -- a son in Iraq, a father and mother in Vietnam, and a grandfather in Korea), all experience deaths of friends, grievous injuries, and the trauma of killing others. These experiences shape who they are, and, equally importantly, shape their families' lives irrevocably.
While this is a truly great play worth seeing for the quality of the drama, I should also point out that, after some of the performances, members of Veterans for Peace will be speaking on panel discussions, to add a discussion of real experiences to the superb work of the playright. This is an added bonus that should not be missed by anyone interested in this subject matter.
I highly recommend that anyone who is able go and see this play.