Tinkling the Ivories

My husband is a piano teacher. Ninety percent of his students are children, and while I trust that playwright Rod Hayward has created a sincere portrait of the student-teacher relationship in his Living in the Spaces, I can tell you this: While Hubby has occasionally marveled over the arpeggios of one or another of his students, he has managed never once to admire more than that. If you know what I mean.

Such is not the case for William, the piano teacher in Hayward’s new play, which is enjoying a trio of staged readings this weekend. In Living in the Spaces, part of Phoenix Theatre’s annual Hormel New Works Festival, the bond that develops between William and nine-year-old Midge deepens and, a few years down the road, becomes something else altogether. Which I hope doesn’t give parents any weird ideas about piano teachers in general, because Hubby and I have a crapload of bills to pay. If you follow me.

Fri., July 16, 7:30 p.m.; Sat., July 17, 3 & 7:30 p.m., 2010
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Robrt L. Pela has been a weekly contributor to Phoenix New Times since 1991, primarily as a cultural critic. His radio essays air on National Public Radio affiliate KJZZ's Morning Edition.
Contact: Robrt L. Pela