UP FOR DISCUSSION " BEFORE THE PLAY What does it mean to have struggles? How do human beings relate to each others’ struggles?

Think of another piece of art (theatre, movie, television show) in which you related to a character’s conflict, but that conflict was something you’d never experienced. Why did you connect to that character? Why do you think you felt a connection to that character’s conflict without experiencing the conflict yourself?


I think doubt is maybe one of the greatest gifts we have, because it makes us keep searching, evolving.”—Billy

Of all the characters in 72 Miles to Go…, to whom did you relate most? What qualities of that character do you see in yourself?

What theatrical devices (set design, lighting design, costume design) helped you determine how time was passing from scene to scene? Describe how what you saw was used to help reflect the passage of time.

Recall a moment from the show in which you felt the dialogue reflected the intensity of the moment. How do you think the actors' interpretation of the dialogue helped to portray the gravity of an intense moment?

A friend is interested in seeing this production; how would you describe it to them without giving anything away?

EMPATHY is an important component of social cognition that contributes to our ability to understand and respond actively to others’ emotions, succeed in emotional communication, and promote prosocial behavior. The term “empathy” is derived from the translation of the German word Einfühlung, meaning “feeling into.” Generally speaking, it refers to the consequences of perceiving the feeling state of another as well as the capacity to do accurately. 72 Miles to Go... tells the story of one family dealing with a very real and contemporary issue that won’t necessarily affect every human being who experiences this story. This play might spark feelings of empathy towards the family and their situation. On the next page, complete the EMPATHY QUESTIONNAIRE to highlight your empathetic persona.


Our struggles may be different, but I know many of you have been through hard things, too. And many more of us will face hard things in the future. We all have struggles. This, I think, is what it means to be human.”—Eva

Recall a time in which a friend came to you with a problem they were dealing with. How did you handle the situation? What did the friend’s struggle make you feel?

Think of a time that you went to a friend to discuss a struggle that you were dealing with. How did your friend handle the situation? What similarities arose in the way you handled a friend’s problem compared to how a friend handled yours?

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