Today is Veterans Day, a day that’s always been special to me because my father was not only a U.S. military veteran; he was born on Veterans Day, which was originally called Armistice Day, a day set aside to celebrate the end of World War I; the armistice was signed on the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month in 1918. Congress named it Veterans Day in 1954, intended to honor all U.S. military veterans.
There is a strong connection between theater and the military, as actor and U.S. Marine veteran Adam Driver pointed out last year (and I put in my Veterans Day post last year):
“The birth of theater was from a military environment. The Greeks — Aeschylus, Euripides, all these elected generals…wrote plays for a culture that was at war.”
It’s why the theater artist and Greek scholar Bryan Doerries began performing the Greek tragedies for modern military audiences, out of which he created a theater company, now called The Theater of War, and a book with the same title.
Also see terrific series on Howlround by Stephan Wolfert, Shakespeare Through The Lens of a Military Veteran
Non-profit groups that help veterans pursue the arts either as a vocation or an avocation, for healing and for sustenance:
United States Veterans’ Artists Alliance (USVAA)
Society of Artistic Veterans (SocArtVets)