Showing posts from October 21, 2007

On Isaac's Discussion of "Apathy"

Isaac over at Parabasis has written a few posts that are resonating with me personally right now. It began with "A Conversation We Should Get In On," and was followed up with "More On Apathy and Our Generation of Theatremakers." It should be clear by now that I am not a member of Isaac's, or most of the blogosphere's, generation. I am 49 years old in an established career with security and job satisfaction. However, I confront in my students every day the same sense of frustration and fear that Isaac is talking about. And perhaps archetypally, as I near my 50th birthday, I am questioning myself and how I approach my own ideas.

In response to Isaac's first post, I wrote:

Are you asking why theatre people don't "do something" about the current theatrical malaise? If that's the question (is it?), I guess I'd say that doing something requires a level of courage that is difficult for most people to consider. It means confronting the pow…

Thousand Kites Blog

Some amazing things have been happening with this production of Thousand Kites, Donna Porterfield's and Appalshop's wonderful play about the effects of the prison system on inmates, guards, their families, and communities. I just sent out the following email to the university campus, and I'd like to extend to my readers as well the invitation to follow the rehearsal process through opening night.

On November 14th, the Drama Department will open the world premiere production of "Thousand Kites," a drama about the effects of prison on inmates, guards, their families, and the community (a "kite," in prison lingo, is a letter or message). The multi-disciplinary arts and education center Appalshop, who created the play to accompany their award-winning documentary "Up the Ridge" about the Wallens Ridge supermax prison just outside of their Whitesburg KY community in Big Stone Gap Va, have been filming rehearsals to make a documentary about our…

Welcome, Asheville Readers

Today, the Asheville Citizen-Times posted a guest commentary I wrote concerning a proposed performing arts center being planned for downtown. I was opposed. Not because I don't think we need venues for the performing arts in Asheville -- we do. What I oppose is the creation of yet another generic arts palace "anchored" (in the sense of sunk) by a 2400-seat auditorium that will house the symphony, but for most of the year will be filled with second- and third-tier touring shows from New York. Here is the text of my letter:
I have been involved in the arts for more than 40 years. I care deeply about the arts, and think they are crucial to creating a vibrant community. So I find it painful to find myself in opposition to the proposal for the new $80 million performing arts center (PAC) proposed for downtown Asheville. But I am, and here is why.Unlike other creatively vibrant local and regional arts organizations like, for instance, Handmade in America…