By Danielle Crean
Using music to mark specific events in one’s life is a lovely and creative way to tell a story. In “Moonage Daydream,” Mary Monahan shows us how David Bowie’s lyrics and melodies played a powerful role in her life from the 1980s to 2016. Many of us have a favorite singer or band that inspired us and got us through dark and heavy moments. We feel comfort and relief when we hear a specific song, and it takes us away from the present and transports us to our own bubble for a little while.
Through David Bowie’s songs, Ms. Monahan remembers incidents and keeps moments alive, no matter whether they were pleasant or upsetting. She discovered Bowie on the day her family first obtained cable television. When she changed channels to find MTV in her parents’ bedroom, a music video appeared. Mary became instantly captivated by the singer and his beautiful eyes.
Some years later, Mary and her best friend were heartbroken when their Bowie tickets were stolen, and they were unable to attend his concert. But soon, she met Nathaniel, an initially off‑putting friend of a friend who became a romantic interest after they bonded over their shared love of Bowie. Charmingly, she challenged him to guess her favorite song, and he answered correctly.
After each scene in the forty‑five‑minute performance, Ms. Monahan added a garment or layer of clothing, an effective metaphor. As Mary’s life became heavier, so did her outfit.
At long last, we saw our leading lady wandering through the East Village in the pouring rain. “I was content in this discomfort,” she said. At this moment of peace and acceptance, it finally happened ‑ she spotted him. There was no contact or words spoken, but there was no need for that. Mary admired from afar the man whose talent saw her through nearly three decades, and helped her find content in the discomfort.
Written and Performed by Mary Monahan
September 21st at 7:30 PM
2019 United Solo Theater Festival
410 West 42nd Street
New York City
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DANIELLE CREAN is an aspiring writer and editor living in Brooklyn, New York. She is a graduate of Marymount Manhattan College with a degree in Communication Arts and Journalism. During her college career she was a writer and editor-in-chief for the Odyssey Online. She is also currently writing a novel based on her own personal experiences with mental health.