By Meredith Deliso
Talk about a run woman show.
In “Endure,” Melanie Jones brings you through the hills and paths of Prospect Park, an immersive play inspired by that curious hobby incomprehensible to anyone who hasn’t felt the urge to do the New York City Marathon — long-distance running.
Jones, who’s finished four marathons herself, is a running junkie, doing a loop around Prospect Park daily. Being out on the road for hours at a time training for these grueling races inspired her to document the experience.
“When I was out there for a long time, I started to notice that almost every human experience under the sun came up while I was running,” said Jones. “There would be moments of complete bliss and utter perfect happiness, followed by rage the likes of which I’ve never heard of.”
With such rich, dramatic ground to draw from, Jones wrote “Endure,” a stream-of-consciousness narrative that documents one woman’s ups and downs while running 26.2 miles, from start to finish — in a play that lasts only 45 minutes.
In the show’s two runs — on July 9 and 16 — Jones will lead audience members through Prospect Park as they listen along to an audio file, downloaded to an iPod in advance of the show.
“It’s an adventure,” said Jones. “We go off the grid, I’ll tell you that much.”
For those who may pale at the thought of running, fear not. The show only covers about three miles, and Jones herself does the majority of the exercise.
“I didn’t want to exclude people who might be intimidated by running,” said Jones. “You do not have to run. And nobody gets left behind.”
Of course, to fully experience “Endure,” it can’t hurt to work up a sweat.
“Endure” meets at the Old Stone House in Washington Park [Fourth Avenue between Third and Fourth streets in Park Slope, (718) 768-3195], July 9 and 16 at 11 am. Free. You must RSVP in advance to download the audio file. For info, visit www.runwomanshow.com.