Things Seen in Utah

Things Seen in Utah August 26, 2017


Tuacahn, without people
This photograph of the Tuacahn stage actually doesn’t do justice to the red sandstone cliff out of the picture to the left.
(Wikimedia Commons public domain)


We’re just back from a superb performance of Mamma Mia! at the spectacular outdoor Tuacahn Amphitheater.


I haven’t been to Tuacahn in several years, so I was impressed all over again by the magnificent setting, which is surely one of the finest in the world.


And the production was excellent.  As good as any I can imagine anywhere.  Moreover, they really used the unique capacities of Tuacahn’s setting.


Once you get past the sheer amoral dysfunctionality of the Sheridan “family” situation — Donna can’t tell, between three men, who the father of her twenty-year-old daughter, Sophie, might be; Sophie has never had a father, which she has long lamented, and, though she has two “aunts” who have shown up briefly in her life on rare occasions, she seems to have no real, functioning, aunts or uncles or grandparents — it’s a fun story, with wonderful music.


The audience was wildly enthusiastic.  At the end, people plainly much more familiar with the music and the play than I am were standing, cheering loudly, singing, and doing the moves along with the stage cast.


Anyway, a great performance in a breathtaking location.




Here’s an article that appeared in the student newspaper at Brigham Young University – Idaho:


“Elder Holland speaks on testimony at Book of Mormon Chiasmus Conference”


And the flimsy pretext of that article now allows me to post three photographs that my friend Kirk Magleby, of Book of Mormon Central, sent me earlier tonight.  I include them here for the historical record:


DCP speaking at BYU (16 Aug 2017)
Here I am speaking at the Chiasmus Jubilee at BYU on 16 August 2017  (Photo by Jaren Wilkey/BYU)


DCP and JWW at "Chiasmus Jubilee"
In this photo, I’m presenting the festschrift volume “‘To Seek the Law of the Lord’: Essays in Honor of John W. Welch” to Jack Welch    (Photo by Jaren Wilkey/BYU)


Elder Clark and Elder Holland and I
Elder Jeffrey R. Holland greets an attendee at the 16 August 2017 “Chiasmus Jubilee.” Behind him, to the left, Elder Kim B. Clark, a member of the First Quorum of the Seventy and the Church Commissioner of Education — he’s a former president of BYU-Idaho and a former dean of Harvard Business School — and I are engaged in conversation.  (Photo by Jaren Wilkey/BYU)




Finally, I read a hilarious entry on an apostate (and mostly atheist) message board this evening.  It seems that some poor ex-Mormon toured the new buildings at the Provo Missionary Training Center (MTC) with his parents a day or two ago.  He was appalled by what he described as the glum and depressed looks of the missionaries there, and by what he characterized as their arrogant demeanor.  There’s no arguing such perceptions.  I’ve also taken the tour, though, and I saw no such things.


However, this person also called attention to the dark hallways and the dark, windowless classrooms of the MTC.  But, on this, point no reasonable person could possibly agree.  I mean, really.  Check out any photograph of the new MTC buildings.  (Look at this article from back in early June, for example.)  They’re virtually nothing but windows.


I’m strongly reminded of a mystery novel that I looked at many years ago, and that I really, really wish I’d bought at the time.  It’s part of a series featuring, I think, a female geologist who ends up solving murders.  (I can remember neither the author’s name nor the title.)  Anyway, this one opened with her having just arrived in Salt Lake City.  She goes to Temple Square, and cannot figure out why the Salt Lake Temple gives her the creeps.  Then, suddenly, it dawns on her: It’s because it has absolutely no windows!  It’s just a solid, featureless block of granite!


SL Temple w/flag, from southwest
The amazingly windowless Salt Lake City Utah Temple  (Wikimedia Commons)


Posted from St. George, Utah



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