We live in a fractured society; few know their neighbors; people are clamoring for community. I look toward a theatre that explores how stories and the art of storytelling can cross cultures, heal old wounds, reconnect peoples, create communal experiences and forge new paths forward. A healthy theatre should be a gathering place, like the town-squares of old; one that provokes and entertains, wounds and heals, challenges and affirms.
Instead of the institution dominating the stage, the meeting of actor and audience sharing a story should dominate the institution. All should be paid what they earn together, equally—while sharing an equal burden for operating the theatre. All involved need to actively work at getting people in to see the show. We need to work as hard, if not harder, at this than at making a show. If one refuses to help earn revenue, they should not share in it.
We need to open the closed-loop of theatre folk primarily/solely doing theatre for other theatre folk. The image of the lone artist needs to give way to the image of an artist communicating with his/her community.
If theatre can truly peer into our collective consciousness, our nightmares and ecstasies, the tragic and comic—it must be done collectively. Art and entertainment should find their way back to another in the stories that give rise to both. We must see past the veneer of entitlement--if we expect people to see our work, we have to give them something worth seeing.
Now that there is some great writing!