Quote of the day: BOREDOM

May 14, 2020


A long rehearsal is like a long marriage or relationship, or a long therapy, right? You reach places where you literally get bored, and you think that there’s nothing else that can happen. “I should get out of therapy,” or, “I should get out of this marriage.” Boredom, to me, is generally a sign that there’s a big shark swimming under the water, and if you’re patient, the shark will rise to the surface. So if you can have the courage to see your way through the boredom until the new thing appears, you’ll have amazing surprises.
–Andre Gregory, interviewed in American Theatre magazine by Rob Weinert-Kendt


From the Deep Archives: Mabou Mines’s HAJJ

May 7, 2020

In this time when live theater is not happening, the veteran downtown troupe Mabou Mines has been posting online treasures from its archives — clips and documentation and full-length videos from its long illustrious career. This week the focus is on a 1993 piece called Hajj, written and directed by Lee Breuer, performed by Ruth Maleczech, with set and lighting by Julie Archer and video by Craig Jones. Because I wrote an article about the production and its cutting-edge use of video technology for American Film magazine, the company asked if I would talk about what it was like seeing the show in person back in the day. My comments were posted on the company’s Facebook page, which you can view here. And you can check out the history of the production on the Mabou Mines website here. There’s a link on the website to watch the show on Vimeo, which is necessarily a rudimentary document that is no substitute for the magical live performance, but it will give you a sense of the work.



Quote of the day: ELECTION YEAR

April 28, 2020


As somebody who has observed elections and paid close attention to democratic processes in other countries, do you have concerns about what the pandemic might mean for our election in November if we’re still far from any sort of “normal?” We’re going to have the election. It’s the law to have the election. We need to understand, without the president taking it personally, that something went wrong in the last election. We need to understand that the states have a lot of control in this. We need to decide that America’s going to prove our democracy by making sure that we’re going to have a free and fair election where people are encouraged to vote and supported in their desire to vote. But I’m not sure we fully have grasped some of the issues — and how quickly things can change.

–Madeline Albright, interviewed in the New York Times Magazine

Quote of the day: SOCIAL CONTRACT

April 15, 2020


Society is indeed a contract….It is a partnership in all science; a partnership in all art; a partnership in every virtue, and in all perfection. As the ends of such a partnership cannot be obtained in many generations, it becomes a partnership not only between those who are living, but between those who are living, those who are dead, and those who are to be born.

–Edmund Burke

edmund burke

Quote of the day: KINDNESS

April 11, 2020


Before you know what kindness really is
you must lose things,
feel the future dissolve in a moment
like salt in a weakened broth.
What you held in your hand,
what you counted and carefully saved,
all this must go so you know
how desolate the landscape can be
between the regions of kindness.
How you ride and ride
thinking the bus will never stop,
the passengers eating maize and chicken
will stare out the window forever.

Before you learn the tender gravity of kindness
you must travel where the Indian in a white poncho
lies dead by the side of the road.
You must see how this could be you,
how he too was someone
who journeyed through the night with plans
and the simple breath that kept him alive.

Before you know kindness as the deepest thing inside,
you must know sorrow as the other deepest thing.
You must wake up with sorrow.
You must speak to it till your voice
catches the thread of all sorrows
and you see the size of the cloth.
Then it is only kindness that makes sense anymore,
only kindness that ties your shoes
and sends you out into the day to gaze at bread,
only kindness that raises its head
from the crowd of the world to say
It is I you have been looking for,
and then goes with you everywhere
like a shadow or a friend.

–Naomi Shihab Nye

naomi shihab nye

(photo by Ha Lam)

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