Well here we are. Another Thursday, another roundup of headlines we had to cut for time from Stage Door Live – Episode 23. I hope you, dear reader, have enjoyed reading these posts as much as I’ve enjoyed writing them. If you were tuned in last night to Stage Door Live you’ll know that we’re taking a little break for ourselves, so this blog might change shape a little over the coming weeks. We shall see. In any case, I’m glad to have you all along for the ride. Let’s crack on, shall we?
Take 20 minutes out of your day today to peruse this gorgeous exhibition. Ireland in Frame is, according to the website, ‘a street photography exhibition trail presented to you by The Embassy of Ireland, Berlin’. In case you’re not located in Berlin, you can view the exhibition at https://irelandinframe.com/.
The mastermind behind the project is Candice Gordon, Ireland’s first full-time cultural officer for the Department of Foreign Affairs; she’s also kind of a rock star (literally).
The project brings together six photographers and is curated ‘to showcase a broad spectrum of real Irish life as seen from the eyes of a variety of talented artists’. There’s a brilliant cross-section of Irish life on display here, but it’s only available until October 2 so go look now!
If you’re not familiar with Stever Carter (like me), add his work to your reading list immediately because it sounds spectacular. His play Nevis Mountain Dew deals with euthanasia; Pecong is a retelling of the Medea myth set on a fictional Caribbean island; Shoot Me While I’m Happy is about Black vaudeville performers. If those descriptions aren’t enough to make you want to get stuck in, I don’t know what to tell you.
Carter worked with the Negro Ensemble Company and was in charge of their literary department and playwriting workshop before he went on to become Playwright in Residence at Victory Gardens Theatre in Chicago.
Steve Carter passed away last week at age 90 in Tomball, Texas.
I have…mixed feelings about this. Which, I feel like I’ve said before in this blog, and I feel like I’ve said it before about other theatre-online stuff. According to The Stage, the platform is selling itself as an ‘online venue’ that will ‘act as both the host site for digital productions as well as offering organisations a ticketing service, and acting as the video partner to capture and produce it’.
There will be both live-streamed and on-demand shows and will be available for once-off events or for repeated use. And I guess…overall, it’s a good thing? I think? At least it’s monetizing the plethora of work that artists have more or less been giving away for free for the last six months.
But in the wake of Ireland’s new framework for Living With Covid-19, I’m just really struggling. Here in Dublin, it’s safe enough to have tourists flying in and bopping all over the country but it’s not safe enough to have 50 people sitting in a strictly controlled theatre, facing the same direction, not speaking/eating/drinking, watching a show for 2 hours.
Why does it feel like the vast majority of people are fully willing to consume what we artists make with a voracious appetite, but as soon as we ask to be recognised as valid, integral working members of society, we’re shoved in a corner. Told to adapt or die. Just switch careers for a year while we ride this thing out. Have a backup plan, and a backup to your backup plan. Figure it out, the show must go on (for free, and online, please).
I’m so tired.
I’m gonna end this week on a positive note: The National Theatre in London is coming back! And they’re getting a big makeover. The Olivier Theatre is being remodeled to be an in-the-round playing space with socially distanced seating and a reduced capacity of 500.
Kicking things off, Giles Terera stars in one-man show The Death of England: Delroy by Roy Williams and Clint Dyer, directed by Ned Bennet; and later in the year, pantomime returns to the national stage with Dick Whittington adapted by Jude Christian and Cariad Lloyd.
National Theatre Director Rufus Norris said: “We’re both delighted and relieved to be reopening the National Theatre with the Olivier in-the-round season, which will allow us to present live work to as many people as possible while social distancing remains in place.”
So there you have it, folks: a little taste of the news that didn’t make it into this week’s Stage Door Live. If you think I’ve overlooked anything major, send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Have a lovely weekend.
Hedgepig Ensemble Theatre – Where are all the classics by women? – Go on. Challenge yourself. Read a play by someone with a very different viewpoint from your own. Broaden your perspective. Something on this list might change your life.
Patreon | Emma Dabiri – First, check out this article on Emma Dabiri’s new book, What White People Can Do Next. Then, check out Dabiri’s Patreon page and support her incredible work.