Some Notes from Michael Khashmanian
George Fields had emergency heart surgery a few months earlier. The surgery was uneventful except for one minor glitch – George died on the operating table. He was dead for one minute and twenty-three seconds until they revived him. The play opens with George coming home after his last physiotherapy session with a bottle of champaign and a gag death certificate given to him by his doctor. Little did George know that his surgery had kept his wife Kate from leaving him. Now that he has a clean bill of health she can proceed with the divorce. During their “discussion” Kate observes that she doesn’t need a divorce because their marriage vows said, “Till death do us part.” Kate is now free and clear, but George has a few plans of his own.
I wrote the play after a friend told me that he had once died on the operating table. My mind starting exploring all the possibilities this might hold. Is a marriage over in this circumstance? The vow states ‘till death do us part but it doesn’t specify exactly how long one has to be dead to make this vow valid. How about life insurance? Do one have to be dead for a certain length of time before there’s a payout? What exactly is the definition of dead? I also wanted to explore how fragile communication can sometimes be in a marriage. Do we really understand how our partner feels? Do we really know their likes and dislikes? How well does anyone know anybody?
The entire play takes place in the living room of the Fields’ home. Since we are performing in two different locations we are trying to show that the scene takes place in one room or two rooms separated by an arch. We are also exploring ways to show the characters having some brief physical contact in handing props to each other.