Friday, June 13, 2008

Sustainability - Program Notes:

It started with a great discussion of Mike Daisey's outstanding "How Theatre Failed America." Daisey has raised important issues, and I was glad to hear him willing to stand up for actors. I became angry about a comment one attendee made that implied -- no, that actually stated -- that it reflected a sense of entitlement to insist that theatre artists be allowed to lead a reasonably stable life. In my opinion, the idea that "nobody asked you to go into the theatre, and so don't expect anything but the most marginal existence" is destructive, and resembles the same words used against coal miners and auto workers when they would go on strike for better pay or working conditions. To commit your life to theatre does not involve a vow of poverty, to my knowledge, and to regard it as entitlement to expect a living wage devalues artists.

2:02 PM