School is back and after a crazy summer of parties and road trips it's good to get back into a routine. But wait! Your entertainment scene doesn't have to be as mundane as your classes--mix it up with some live entertainment courtesy of Alberta Theatre Projects.
This month atp is putting on the award winning play, Proof, written by David Auburn, about a revolutionary mathematical proof that is found after a brilliant mathematician's death. Since the author of the proof neglected to put his/her name on it, uncertainty and mistrust about the origins of the work begin to erode the relationships between the mathematician's family and friends. Auburn weaves this plot brilliantly to reveal how intriguing the uncommon subject of math can be. The appeal of the play according to Meg Roe (who plays the lead role of Catherine) lies in the passion mathematicians have for their craft,
"People are really intruiged by the idea of the birlliant mathematician, harboured away in some deep dark corner that finally emerges as hero," says Roe. " I think we find math really romantic because it's untouchable for most of us, and yet people who can do it are so incredibly driven by their passion for it. It's accessable in the sense that we all would like to be passionately driven by something we're exceptionally good at."
Although the play highlights the relatively obscure subculture of mathematicians, don't let that scare you away. Proof is not about math, instead it focuses on some very universal themes.
"I think how families relate, communicate and get along; the acceptance of one's ability and acknowlegement of one's talent; self-esteem the idea of owning your own ability are all issues that all the characters in the play have to deal with," says Roe. "Also, the inability to accept who you are can keep you from being with the people that you really want to be with."
Accepting one's ability and talent is something Roe has had to deal with herself. It's one way Roe has found a connection between herself and her character, Catherine.
"There are similatities between Catherine and I, although not on the surface. I think Catherine is conflicted about what she does and whether or not she's good at it, and I can definately connect with that. Self doubt is something that can keep you from doing your best work and that is something Catherine and I have had to deal with."
If you need further evidence that Proof is worth checking out, it might interest you to know that it was awarded the 2001 Pulitzer Prize for drama. With such a solid script and talented cast including Meg Roe, Barbara Gates Wilson, Duval Lang and Ryan Wilkie, this play is sure to entertain you even if your days of arithmatic are over.