we are continuoUs


Photo Credit: Jackson Miles


I was diagnosed with HIV in 2018 and I knew, maybe even as the words “you are HIV positive” were coming out of the doctor’s mouth, that I would write about it.

I write to process, to understand the world and my place in it, and I needed to process my diagnosis and its impact on my life. And so, in a way, the play was inevitable.

we are continuous was written for many people
For myself, obviously
And for my mother (who is one of the most fantastic humans I know)

I wrote it for anyone who has or has ever had a mother (or a maternal figure)
I wrote it for Black and brown queer folx
And HIV positive folx
And for you
The Williamstown Theater Festival community
For each and every person reading this note right now.

I believe it was Malcolm X who said:
“I’m going to tell it like it is.
I hope you can take it like it is.”

I’m going to tell it like it is.
I hope you can take it like it is.

we are continuous
Music and lyrics by Mykal Kilgore

I’ll never stop loving you
I never will
I never could
Through the bad and through the good
I’ll never stop loving you

It’s something I’ll never do
Run you away
Not see you through
Even if you tell me to
I’ll never stop loving you

You and I are meant to be together
can’t you see
There will never be another
Who’ll love you as
Much as me

I’ll never stop loving you
Cause you are mine
I promise to
Always do my best to prove
I’ll never stop loving you

Photo Credit: Emilio Madrid


WTF’s Artistic Team Lianna Rada-Hung, James Montaño, and Evan King asked playwright Harrison David Rivers and husband Christopher Bineham about their life together in and out of the theater and portraying real life on the stage. 

WTF: "we are continuous" reads as a semi-autobiographical work. How did you choose which elements of your relationship to adapt for this play?

Harrison David Rivers: I’m chuckling as I answer this question because I can’t help but wonder what the line is between “autobiographical” and “semi-autobiographical.”

Wherever it is—it is most certainly blurry.

My plays are ruled by a kind of gut dramaturgy, a dramaturgy of the heart. If it feels right – it stays. If it doesn’t – it goes. I’m always trying to lean into truth; asking myself – Is that true? Is that what actually happened? Is that how it really felt?

For Christopher: How does it feel to have pieces of your relationship portrayed onstage?

Christopher Bineham: I love it! His writing is one of the ways that I fell in love with Harrison, so it’s always felt natural to me that our relationship might find its way into his writing. Seeing both the “facts” that are depicted in his plays and the ways in which our lives get fictionalized in them offers an interesting perspective on our experiences. And it amuses me to hear people try to guess which bits occurred and which bits are made up (so often these are exactly opposite what people think!).


For Harrison: What considerations or rules do you give yourself when representing real-life familial relationships on-stage, even when they are only vaguely autobiographical?

 HDR: There are obviously things in this play that are pulled from my life. The tricky thing is that my life is lived in the company of many, many, others. My husband, for example. My parents. And so, while I may be putting MY truth on the page, that truth might bump up against someone else’s truth in a less than comfortable way.

 That friction can be difficult to navigate.

 At this point in my life/career, I try to be as open and honest about my process as possible. I try to be as transparent as possible about the content of my plays. In some cases, I ask permission.

 The hope is that even if someone doesn’t love the fact that I’ve written them (or a facsimile of them) into a play of mine, they KNOW unequivocally that they’ve been written with LOVE.


For Both: What has theatrical storytelling fed in your life together or apart?

HDR: Our relationship has found its way into two of my plays so far – we are continuous and This Bitter Earth, the latter of which has been produced all over the country. It’s been a joy to travel together to see our “relationship” played out on stages from Hartford and Philadelphia to Chicago to LA. And to witness the impact of our story on audiences of all sizes, shapes, colors and creeds.

CB: It’s been wonderful to see people respond to these plays with such warmth. And it’s gratifying that these stories resonate with people and reflect others’ truths or experiences.