Monday, June 19, 2006

Describing a New Model

A good and brilliant friend of mine, Brian Santana, who sometimes reads this blog, emailed me:

I was thinking about this question the other day: you often talk about the problems with the current theatrical system and the corrective measures that should or could be embraced to combat these ills. However, in all of this discussion, I have never been able to form a clear picture of what the theatre that you describe would look like. Perhaps this is because theatre would be concentrated towards particular communities, and therefore, theatre would be slightly different in each community.


Brian then goes on to use the opening of Robert Brustein's masterful Theatre of Revolt and Rachel Carson's Silent Spring as examples of writers who have painted a picture of the future as a way of defining the present, and illustrating the changes that should be made. While I am not capable of rising to the heights of a Brustein or a Carson, I do see the wisdom of his request.

So in the days that follow, I will attempt to describe what the theatre I envision might look like. Having said that, a disclaimer is in order: I'll only be able to describe a few of the manifold possibilities. I will present a broad sketch only, in the hope that somebody might be willing to embroider on my ideas, and extend them much further than I can myself.

Disclaimer 2: I don't have much hope that my ideas will be in the least bit original. I suspect that many, many theatres across the country and throughout the world have been using most of" my ideas" for decades, and it is simply my own ignorance that leads me to claim them. In fact, I hope that this is so, so that it won't be necessary to recreate the wheel. And I sincerely hope that others will not feel the need to ridicule my ignorance -- as a college professor, I am a big target.

Disclaimer 3: What I describe won't be for everyone, nor is it my claim that these should be the single way that theatre should be done. An art form is best when it is being done in many different ways. Diversity is richness.

I will also cannibalize from my previous posts, which in this new context might gain new perspective.

I welcome into my comments anyone who might want to build on my ideas, or tinker with them in some way. It is my hope that those who don't like the ideas won't feel compelled to condemn them here, since one's own blog is really the best place to put forward your individual vision.

Having written this, I'd better start thinking of things to write!

2 comments:

Kim said...

"It is my hope that those who don't like the ideas won't feel compelled to condemn them here, since one's own blog is really the best place to put forward your individual vision."

What if one doesn't have a blog?

Scott Walters said...

Good point -- then comment away!