DL: Coming back to the question of what can provoke action or engagement … how close to home does the material need to be? Let’s try something a little more local.
[Violetta as the bond trader …]
DL: You know … let’s being it Even Closer …
[Violetta as literary manger …]
DL: Let’s bring it EVEN CLOSER … does anyone want a beer?
DL: I’m not acting! And we don’t have styrofoam beer – who wants one?
[beer is distributed]
DL: what about the recent trend – at least at ps122 – of handing out beer. “Beer is the only thing that makes it bearable …” but if we are conceding that theatre’s audience is so small that its effect is small, are we also conceding that the mechanisms of theatre are too complicated?
MD: I have a problem with the whole design of these scenes. these scenes start with a woman who’s been raped, and then you’re using the same frame to show these next scenes makes them seem impossibly more petty and I don’t agree with that strategy at all.
DL: I think it’ s more about the strategy of documentary theatre
MD: but I think decision to stage them the same way skews things
DL: what about this kind of theatre where the actual making of the play that presents social injustice is founded on social injustice
MD: there’s a huge difference between theatre as an art form and actual institutions – political theatre can still happen, even if a given institution might be problematic
CW: but what institutions are dedicated to fighting injustice?
DL: but they do present these works, like nickled and dimed –
W9: what is your mission statement and what did you do – on SW’s 100 anniversary – to get funding for this?
DL: yeah, but compromise gets me hot
W9: well, why is that okay for you instead of these institutions?
DL: but if ps122 or I are acting in bad faith that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t talk about the instutitions
MD: these institutions also chose to sell out their core beliefs and adopt a corporate model
W9: as long as you admit your own complicity
JH: admitting it is the first step
PL: in this conversation we keep talking about the political as if it were change, as if it were revolution – but it seems like it’s more commonly characterized as recognition, which is a different exchange, with different results
M3: sometimes preaching to the choir is necessary – to be reminded that the struggle is worth it, to sustain engagement and action
MD: there’s also political theatre of the stastus quo – works that are about keeping things as they are, that you’ll be moved, but not too much, and you’ll stay a subscriber and go home happy
M4: I don’t believe the Illinois Gov was changed by the exonerated so much as he detected in it the evidence of a social curve, a momentum that allowed him to make a statement or a public stand – precisely because it’s being backed up in public.