I caught a preview performance yesterday of Noah Haidle’s poignant play Saturn Returns at Lincoln Center’s Mitzi E. Newhouse Theater yesterday. I didn’t bring any Kleenex, but I should have.
Directed by Nicholas Martin, Saturn Returns is a triptych of the life of Gustin, a Grand Rapids, Mich., radiologist in 1948, 1978, and 2008, as he experiences his first, second, and third Saturn returns.
Astrology is never mentioned, but the playwright, who appears to be experiencing his own Saturn return, has a keen understanding of the language of loss and loneliness that the planet of restriction speaks so eloquently.
As befitting a play called Saturn Returns, it’s a sparse production, with Gustin at age 88, 58, and 28 played by three actors — John McMartin, James Rebhorn, and Robert Eli, respectively. The women in Gustin’s life are portrayed by the same thespian — the beautiful, versatile Rosie Benton. No other players are on stage and there are no intermissions.
Film buffs may know Rebhorn from his numerous screen and TV roles, including The Talented Mr. Ripley, My Cousin Vinny, and The Scent of a Woman. Throughout his career, Rebhorn has often appeared as the nerd or expert, a guy with a plastic pen holder in the pocket of his starched white shirt. Sure enough, he’s a Virgo born Sept. 1.
I like the fact that Gustin is a radiologist because that embodies the current opposition of Uranus in Pisces and Saturn in Virgo.
I’m no drama critic, but if Saturn Returns is representative of what Haidle is doing at 28, I can only imagine what his future holds. Is he the next Edward Albee? I took a friend who is an accomplished actress, Anney Giobbe, with me and she was also blown away by Haidle’s talent. Like Saturn, Haidle’s not going away.
Hey, this gives me an excuse to reprint my poll, “What Happened During Your Saturn Return?”
Just in case you don’t know, your first Saturn return typically occurs around 29, the second around 58, and the third around 87.
As Saturn in Virgo moves to an opposition with Uranus in Pisces that is exact on Election Day, I think using the Web (Uranus) to talk about Saturn returns is a good way to channel the energy of this challenging aspect.
If you don’t see what happened to you in the poll or you’d like to share your Saturn return story, please use the comment form. Thanks, and many happy Saturn returns!
Back in the Sixties, Timothy Leary encouraged his followers to “Turn on, tune in, drop out.” That was when Saturn in Pisces opposed Uranus in Virgo, which was also moving to a conjunction with revolutionary Pluto.
This time around, Saturn is in Virgo and opposing Uranus in Pisces. I say we’ve got to “Turn off (the computer, the TV, the iPod, the BlackBerry), tune out (the noise and hype), drop in (to our true selves).”
I don’t want to stop blogging, but I know that I can’t be online 24/7. It’s not good to be cut off from nature in this way. You can’t smell the roses if you’re constantly checking your BlackBerry.
I took a road trip with my niece and nephew this summer. As we drove across country, my nephew was constantly instant-messaging his friends on his Sidekick, while my niece was listening to music on her iPod. In the morning, the first thing they would do was turn on the Disney Channel. Of course, they both have Neptune/Uranus in Capricorn opposing my Sun so they were bound to bring an electrical charge into my orbit.
The only time I saw them “unplugged” was in the swimming pool or at the dinner table.
I think that when Neptune moves into Pisces, we’re going to have a backlash against technology. Maybe everyone will escape by going fishing (Pisces).
My radio collaborator Pamela Cucinell has a great post about Paris Hilton’s response to the McCain camp’s diss of her in ad designed to make Barack Obama look like just another celebrity. Pamela’s at the top of her game and Paris is fabulous in the video, which is embedded in Pamela’s post.
Ray Merriman’s prediction that the upcoming Saturn/Uranus opposition, exact on Election Day, will bring back the generation gap, appears to be coming true, if Paris making fun of Old Man McCain is any evidence.