Even Further Off Broadway than Usual
Yesterday’s New York Times featured this article on theatre director Arin Arbus’s work with prisoners at the Woodbourne Correctional Facility, through an organization called Rehabilitation Through the Arts:
Because some inmates had been released or transferred, she was rehearsing new actors in the play about family relationships, called “Starting Over,” which Rehabilitation Through the Arts hopes to turn into an educational movie for prisoners. She started with a scene in which an inmate is getting ready to go “on a trailer,” a semiannual visit that allows a prisoner to spend roughly 72 hours with his family privately in a trailer on prison property. After a first run-through she started working on the emotions of the scene.
“How does a person feel when they’re about to go on a trailer?” she asked.
“Nervous!” one man shouted. “Excited!” said another. “In love!” After more discussion Ms. Arbus told them to do the scene again and offered one final note. “Do it better. How’s that?” she said cheerfully. (And they did.)