Alexis Soloski begins her article ," The playwright Adrienne Kennedy never wanted to move to Virginia. She spent 30 years living on the fourth floor of a brownstone on West 89th Street — her “little Victorian palace,” she called it. But the rent went higher. Her breath on the stairs came shorter. Just before she turned 80, she traveled down to Williamsburg, Va., to visit her younger son, Adam Kennedy, and she stayed.
“Unfortunately, I’ve been here six years,” she said of her new city. “I hate it.”
She may hate it, but it hasn't stopped her from creating new work including, a poem, a memoir and a play, “He Brought Her Heart Back in a Box.” There is no sign of the playwright's age in this play, " a tender and violent love story set in the Jim Crow South and wrung from the memories of her mother and grandmothers." Soloski says, " Her mind is switchblade sharp".
“I wrote it quickly,” Ms. Kennedy said. “I was angry. Things are just boiling inside me. I keep a lot of notes and then suddenly it emerges. Every word.”
In Ms. Kennedy’s worlds, no one lives happily ever after.“I am 86 years old. It never once occurred to me that I would live to be 86,” she said. “It certainly never occurred to me that people would still be paying me any attention.”
Thankfully people are!
In the words of another playwright Arthur Miller " Attention must be paid" -
We all should know Adrienne Kennedy and her work at any age, but especially now.