Feb 1, 2010

Roadmaps and Sports

Kamal Angelo Bolden in The Elaborate Entrance of Chad Deity, by Kristoffer Diaz, at Victory Gardens Theater. Photo Credit: Liz Lauren.

I don't have any stories in the new issue of American Theatre, but it's a favorite of mine for the way its various stories resonate off each other: profiles of three great ensemble companies (Nature Theater of Oklahoma, Neo-Futurists, and Pig Iron) somehow belong in the same issue as a look at SF's sophisticated Cutting Ball Theatre, a survey of museums programming more "live art" (including some Nature Theater), and a piece on Victory Gardens' Ignition festival for young playwrights of color. There's also the script for Melissa James Gibson's This and a first-person account of an American actor, Kermit Dunkelberg, playing Milosevic in a new play--in Serbia. (Maybe because I don't have a piece in it, I've been able to step back and see it clearly as a larger text. In any case, it's a good issue.)

In particular I loved the following quotes so much they've been sitting in a draft of this post waiting to publish since I first proofread them many weeks ago. From Pig Iron's Dan Rothenberg:
Scripts are like a roadmap. You can't just wave a roadmap in the air and say, "We went somewhere." They might give you a shape of something, but not the thing itself. Theatre is not a reproducible product.
And from Nature Theater's Pavol Liska:
Ultimately, every show is the invention of a new sport, a new game...Would you rather watch an exhibition game or a real game between two really strong teams? We’re interested in real games, the Championship World Cup—two best teams up against each other.
Good, good stuff.

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