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Letter: Among the Best Productions Ever

To the Editor:

I hope Nicola Smith’s clinical yet oblivious review (“A Terminal Diagnosis: Now What?,” Nov. 14) does not discourage people from attending the Parish Players’ production of The Shadow Box. I’m no drama critic and have no vested interest in the Parish Players but am certain I’m not alone in experiencing this work as among, if not the, best Upper Valley productions I’ve attended — so smoothly executed, poignant and humorous that the audience almost didn’t stop clapping.

Dying’s not new, true. But it’s not going away, either. Each individual who “suddenly” (it always seems sudden, no matter how long we’ve known we’re mortal) faces his own or a loved one’s imminent death finds it new and uniquely challenging. I was privileged to meet and hear Elizabeth Kubler-Ross years ago when her concept of the five stages of grief was “new.” Turns out those stages are ancient and apply to all forms of loss that occur throughout life, as well as when death comes. Having worked as an oncology social worker for 20-plus years, I could see my clients — people who made me weep and laugh, puzzle, love and grieve — in the people of The Shadow Box, and feel all of them in me.

Connie Snyder

Thetford

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Theater Review: A Terminal Diagnosis; Now What?

Thursday, November 14, 2013

The impulse toward life is so powerful that we’ll make any bargain, make any promise, fight almost any battle to live even one more day. But what happens when you’ve been given a terminal diagnosis and think you know, more or less, when you’re going to die? How do you confront it, and how do you help the people around …