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Talking TV with the Indigo Girls' Amy Ray

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Sarah Terez Rosenblum (@SarahTerez) is an MFA-holding writer, teacher and Spinning instructor. She's also the Theater Listings Editor for Centerstage Chicago. Look for her posts twice a week.

So you don’t like The Indigo Girls, and you couldn’t care less about “Six Feet Under.” Say you prefer Insane Clown Posse and “Jem and the Holograms,” or maybe Shakira and “Diff’rent Strokes” are your thing. The point isn’t my vastly superior taste in music and television, but rather, the idea that all of us are passionate about something.

Now, what if you had the chance to discuss one of your passions with another? Like, you’re hanging with the Posse, playing croquet (‘cause you know they’re big into that) and you lean over to one of them, the guy with all that makeup, and you say, “Excuse me, Mr. Posse, how do you feel about ‘Jem and the Holograms?’” and he says, “Why, it’s the most exquisite animated show about shape-changing rock stars ever. But I always wondered, wasn’t Rio technically cheating on Jerrica when he was with her alter-ego, Jem?” Or you and Shakira are sharing a ham sandwich and the She-Wolf herself confides, “You know, I’m what Willis was talking about.”

I offer these totally plausible examples so you’ll understand my delight when I found myself in conversation with Indigo Girl Amy Ray about the transformative power of Alan Ball’s fantastic TV show, “Six Feet Under.” For more universally relevant Indigo Girls info, including details on Emily Salier’s long-awaited solo project and the inspiration behind the duo’s upcoming holiday album, sashay on over to the full length interview, but for those of you who appreciate the thrill of discussing one of your obsessions with another, behold:

Our Town: Amy, you’ve talked about your fear of death, has it lessoned as you’ve gotten older?
Amy Ray: I still go through moments where I feel pretty paralyzed by it, but it’s changed for the better. I used to be totally obsessed. Around 10 years ago, I went through a short period where three significant friends died. I did some work with different spiritual instructors, some sweats. We do a lot in native communities [which] I would never exploit, because I don’t believe in co-opting people’s spirituality, but I was taken in and it changed me, made me able to accept the grieving process. Since then I’ve had a different relationship to death. You know what else helped is “Six Feet Under.”
OT: How did it help you?
AR: For some reason it gave me peace around it, I don’t know why, it made it feel like part of the process of life and it kind of diluted it for me, and when I get really scared I can think about it, think about those characters and it comforts me for some reason, I don’t know why.
OT: I can see that, except, I still miss them.
AR: Oh, my God the last episode it was so sad because it just felt like
we were losing all of our friends. … It was the greatest series ever.
OT: Alan Ball is amazing.
AR: I love Alan ball. He writes “True Blood” too.
OT: Do you like that show?
AR: I don’t love it, but I like it.
OT: It’s no Six Feet, nothing is.
AR: Not even close. But I really like “Dexter.”
OT: Me too.
AR: I find that it’s almost as rich as “Six Feet.”
OT: Yes, but don't say anything else, because I'm a season behind.
AR: (laughs) I will not say anything

Fanatics and casual fans can catch Indigo Girls Saturday at Morton Arboretum. The duo hits the stage at 7 p.m. as part of the 2010 In Tune with Trees Concert Series. Tickets are a reasonable $35-$45, so bring your friends, the Insane Clown Posse. We hear they love sipping red wine under the stars. And be sure to check out our full interview with the girls.

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This page contains a single entry by Matt Wood published on July 20, 2010 11:36 AM.

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