You’re walking home at night from frat row. It’s dark. It’s unreasonably late. And there are footsteps behind you. Are they following you? Maybe? Wait… is that music? A year ago, there was really only one explanation. The Sun God dressed in black. Wearing a mask. Wielding a light saber. And carrying a boombox.
COURTESY OF JOHNATHAN RECOR
If you were on campus last year, you probably saw him crashing President Jim Yong Kim’s inauguration, lurking in the graveyard, performing near last year’s Winter Carnival sculpture or leading his Love March. Stories about and perspectives of the Sun God range from the positive to negative. Regardless, the Sun God was a campus icon. So, you may be wondering, where is he now?
(Watch his interview with WPTZ here)
For those who are not so familiar with him, The Sun God was the head of “Theater-On-The-Walk” — an organization that expresses humanity through theatrical enactments based on personal suffering.
Jonathan Recor MALS ’10 is not only the man behind the mask of the Sun God, but also a toymaker, martial artist, peace activist and a former Dartmouth graduate student. His journey as the Sun God began when he decided to create a character that “[was] an amalgamative form of what [he] thought monsters should have looked like during his childhood years.”
As this cloaked figure, he had numerous adventures around campus during his two years at Dartmouth, including appearing in the background of JYK’s inauguration. Recor relates his experiences to our school motto, Vox Clamantis in Deserto:
“[It] originates prior to my Dartmouth experience, set from the burden of an unfulfilled youth. As the younger of two rival brothers beset by our petty differences, I have been forever haunted by the regret of what could have been, of what should have been. And to this day, I feel in my heart, a profound love for my brother —Christopher, our family musician — and wonder when the chords of our discontent will ever again tune to harmony.”
COURTESY OF JOHNATHAN RECOR
“Stealing away the night of its darkness as I role-played about the Dartmouth campus as my unruly brother, I can recall several memorable occurrences as further outlined in my 2011 graduate thesis ‘Theater-On-The-Walk:’ the irony I felt when encountering a wandering priest from the Aquinas House who professed to explain to me that ‘love is sacrifice;’ or the weight of personal sadness resurrected as tears fell to the boulder-stone surface alongside the sitting-statue of my bronze-grinning friend Robert Frost; or even that stormy [night] on the golf course [when] I dangerously raced my baton across the sky like a child conducting the nearing falls of wild lightning. Indeed my Dartmouth experiences were truly different. And in confusing those inner-boundaries of Heaven and Hell with the mental anguish of feeling like God’s lonely man, I carried on and continued my brother’s grand symphony.”
His adventuring has moved on from Dartmouth, but it continues to this day.
“Currently working ‘suit and tie’ in the Greater New York area as a business consultant for one of the largest leading financial firms in the world, I can only express quite plainly, that I am a Superman in disguise,” Recor says.
Though he is now a business consultant for PricewaterhouseCoopers, Recor states that he has never lost the sense of responsibility he feels toward humanity. To this day, he considers himself “first and foremost, an artist.”
“I am also proud to say that my personal life has also met with a new shimmer of brilliance from a very special young lady whom I consider to be ‘the gem of Staten Island,’ both for her physical and moral toughness and her equally gentle ways and may very well prove to be the honest-to-goodness love of my life!” Recor said.
It seems that his Love Marches helped Recor on the path to finding that special someone he genuinely cares about.
“I like to think that there is a Sun God residing in each of us — one that secretly yearns for nothing more than to simply jump out and play — and it is my sincere hope that one day this story will help compel others to express themselves so that they too may discover the pleasure of living their own greatest adventure.”
Recor’s MALS 2011 graduate thesis Theatre-On-The-Walk can be found in the Rauner Special Collections Library.