Going HOME with Geoff Sobelle

They say you can’t go home again. But it turns out you can, if it’s a home that theater maker Geoff Sobelle built.

I recently plane-train-automobiled it (ok, I actually walked from the train station to my hotel and the theater) to see HOME at the Arts & Ideas Festival in New Haven, CT, so I could see for myself the magic behind this performance that CPA has been trying to bring to Chapel Hill for a couple of seasons now. The stars have aligned, and it will grace the Memorial Hall stage for two nights in March 2020.

A man walks up the stairs of a full set on stage during a play.

HOME has been described as “spellbinding” (even in our own marketing copy!) and that’s true. I’ll add more words to that one adjective: wit-filled, familiar, nostalgic, uplifting and heartbreaking all at once. Filled with characters but void of dialogue, this piece of theater evokes many emotions, as a house comes together onstage with inhabitants from many different periods in the home’s history existing alongside one another. They do so quite deftly thanks to the sharp, witty choreography of David Neumann, whom you might remember from I Understand Everything Better in CPA’s 18/19 season.

I watched, sometimes through tear-filled eyes, as my fellow audience members laughed, gasped, and murmured recognition at what unfolded before us. We even got involved—at one point making a sort of bucket brigade to hang party lights above the house (this time I’m referring to the audience section) in the theater. When we succeeded, everyone cheered, together.

Without spoiling everything that happens in this 90 minutes of theater, suffice it to say that HOME recalls what it’s like to love a home, leave a home, and love IN a home. When the lights came up, I didn’t want the spell to be broken. Luckily for me: I get to see it again next March.

Christina Rodriguez
CPA Associate Director of Marketing and Communications

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