Monday, March 03, 2008

Karl Miller's Ruminations of Zack Mannheimer

The sporadically-posting Karl Miller offers these and other comments on Zachary Mannheimer's project in Des Moines. If this is how Miller writes, I wish he'd write more!

Insofar as we are concerned about the health and integrity of "American Theatre," we must explore our own nation. I don't see this as a mere corrective to the self-defeating NY-centric model that currently dominates. And I'm not just gushing because it happens to involve my boyhood home -- Zach chronicles a tour through the country that leaves open the possibility for similar developments in Indianapolis, Pittsburgh, Omaha, and Missoula.

I haven't read his entire blog yet (it's as much a drinking tour of the heartland as a cultural survey), but here's what I admire most about the whole enterprise. We compare theatre to religion. We compare it to music. We compare it to a gallery. A gymnasium. A hospital. I believe that the raw ingredients of theatre are time, space, and people. Any project that takes the time to enter new spaces and connect with different people is good for theatre. So while we theatre folk often feel a kindred calling with priests, musicians, painters, athletes and doctors ... it must be said that we are also, at heart, a brotherhood of explorers.

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

Thanks Karl. You should come back home and work with us!

There's a lot to discuss through this amazingly long Daisy/Jacobs deal (Jacobs and I go way back, so I get to be extra snarky with him, he loves that...)

Things here are moving quick - we may have the building in less than 2 months.

-ZMannheimer

The New York Theater Review comes out this month - my essay there is my response mostly...

Thanks again for your support - and I'm serious - if you ever find yourself in your home land, let's at least meet for a drink, or several.

Karl Miller said...

Hey Scott,

Yeah I've been more of a reader than a blogger this past year or so. I need a voyage or a project to get the muscles working again, so I'll be writing more. But I've been keeping up on your developments here -- nice to see your thoughts coalescing into a declaration of principles. Keep it up!

Zach,

You're on, dude. Have you been out to see Riverside theatre or No Shame Theatre in Iowa City? It's a good hour away, but the student population hails from all over. Nice recruiting ground, I'm sure ... I'll be out there this summer, actually, so I'll look you up -- been telling my fam/friends who still live out there to check it out. Best of luck with everything!

Paul Rekk said...

All this Iowa talk -- I'm getting nostalgic. I spent a bit of time at Riverside, met some of my best friends to this day there. Iowa City's one of the best things about the state, in this born and raised native's opinion.

I'll have to swing by the Social Club next time I'm home, Zach. I'm one of those oddballs who's actually happy in Nylachi, but hearing good news from IA always puts a smile on my face. Good stuff, sir.