In keeping with tradition, longtime Commonweal resident ensemble member David Hennessey pens a paean in honor of the year’s work, referencing each of the plays we produced in the season. This year was certainly full of challenges, but “the show must go on!” Here is David’s poem for 2021:

A Return in Stages

At season’s start, with so few vaccine shots,
We limited seats and laid out floor dots.
To shrink COVID odds,
We used patron pods
When staging Eat. Our opening night brought

Long-waited return of folks through our doors!
(Online shows reached those more cautious at core.)
With Dancing, two souls
At contrary poles
Bridged a wide chasm to strike a rapport.

In June, state rules allowed more people in.
So, by Complete Works, we broke into grins,
Thinking we could see
Tunnel’s end, mask-free,
But ’twas not to be. Come Back took a spin

On the road to find the best resting place
For a dear friend’s remains, kept in a vase.
Then, blazing new trails,
At last we unveiled
A Carol with female roles long erased.

As bookends, two bright notes of hope adorned
The year. Stela kicked off with Clear Blue Morn,
And then in the fall
We welcomed this call:
Josiah and Rachel saw Franny born!

—David Hennessey