Each sister has found a role that insulates her in some way from the pain in life. But disoriented by their loss, they all gradually come unglued, undergoing subtle and complex changes in the course of the play. When Hope goes over the edge, Meghan is thrust into a caretaker role that enables her, for the first time, to take responsibility for herself. Hope begins to experience unexpected joy, and even Sharon softens noticeably. Paradoxically, the sisters thrive in coming to terms with the pain and suffering they have long striven to avoid.
All this is well done on stage; the actors are engulfed in their roles. The sisters respond to their loss each in her own way: they hurt each other, they protect each other, square-dancing through life, switching roles, evolving as individuals and as a family.
The Stillness between Breaths keeps it real, offering no pat answers or smarmy solutions. It's an in-depth character study of life the way we all live it one breath at time.
[Originally published in April, 2005.]