San Diego outdoors: Aida, animal tracks, rugby, SUP with dogs, 1800s Old Town, waterski and wakeboard
Indoors: WWI San Diego, complete history of theater, Christopher Plummer, pickles, Van Gogh-Gaughin, Martina McBride
11:50 a.m., June 28
According to Howard Korder's comedy-drama Santa Fe, New Mexico, has replaced California as the place, if not to find, heal, or reinvent oneself, then at least the site for major depressurization. Everyone - a Whitman's sampler of various neurotics - has toxic underpinnings (even a house). Reactions to their burdens range from allergies to murder. A relocated family counselor (and demoted psychiatrist) wants to do good but -- physician heal thyself - finds that his meddling magnifies peoples' troubles. Korder raises some fundamental questions: Can people change? Are our emotions, as psychobiologists aver and antidepressants corroborate, just chemically induced? Are spells, curses, and charms for real? Korder's written a funnier and much deeper play than the one currently at the Old Globe. As if reticent to face its implications, director Michael Bloom has staged Tranquility just this side of sitcom, his actors chipper-mannered and wavy-gestural and clinging to a "type." The result is a consistently strange tone that, when in doubt, encourages easy laughs over more upsetting matters. David Kay Mickelsen's costumes run the New Age gambit. Scott Bradley's set, a 70-year-old rough wooden plank house with cracking adobe walls, is a gem. And Robert Wierzel's expert lighting has a creamy, high-desert feel.