Monday, May 12, 2008

Theatre Ideas On the Road

The date I will be participating in the post-show discussion following Mike Daisey's How Theatre Failed America has been set: June 15th. Details of other panelists still to follow, but here is the basic info on Mike's website:
Each Sunday, a roundtable forum with theater artists and administrators will follow the performance. Slated guest include: Eric Bogosian (Talk Radio), Robert Brustein (Founder of Yale Repertory Theatre and American Repertory Theatre), James Bundy (Dean, Yale School of Drama), Jim Nicola (Artistic Director, New York Theatre Workshop), Richard Nelson (Conversations in Tusculum), Lisa Kron (2.5 Minute Ride, Well), Maria Dizzia (Eurydice), Gideon Lester (Artistic Director, American Repertory Theatre), Maria Goyanes (Producer, 13P), Paige Evans (Lincoln Center) and others in direct conversation with working actors, technicians, designers and independent producers of the American theater. The audience is invited to stay for the roundtable forums that will immediately follow Sunday evening performances.
I'll be in NYC through June 17th, and leave the morning of the 18th.

I'll also be in Denver for the National Performing Arts Conference from June 11 - 14. Let me know if we should try to get together!


Dennis Baker said...

Put it in my calendar. I will try and make it. I have been trying to see the show and I would love to meet and talk with you.

Jeffrey Sweet said...

Of course, part of the joke of the night is that this very strong panel line-up is going to discuss at the same time the Tony Awards are on.

I saw the show last Sunday. There were passages a little too close to Lewis Black-style rants, but I enjoyed the evening for the most part. Except I thought it had a split personality. Some of it was about the crises that face theatre in this country -- not a lot new but phrased with a nice sense of irony that locked some ideas into place vividly. And some of it was stories of his personal experiences in American theatre, which didn't seem to have much to do with whether American theatre is healthy or not. He tells an extended story about doing THE BALCONY in a garage theatre in Seattle, but he doesn't go into the reasons why the garage theatre scene flourished and then began to peter out. His personal story was funny, but the larger question of why theatre flourishes in which communities at which times is largely unaddressed.

Mind you, this is the stuff that interests me. A general audience might well enjoy the diversions from the central question.