following up on the controversy surrounding Theater J/Forum’s presentation of Seven Jewish Children, Theater J has been posting all sides of the reaction on their blog. I really do admire Ari’s tendency to just put it all out there in the open, the good and the bad. It’s a difficult thing to do and it’s his interest in that which explains his approach to controversial work as well. His job is a hard one and it is impossible to please all Jews at once. I’m glad that he continues to challenge his audience, I only wish that all of the audience were up for the challenge.
Speaking of the multiplicity of Jews. This website contains photos and stories about Jewish communities all over the world. I particularly found the African communities fascinating.
I found this interview with Moises Kaufman interesting. The thing that is the most successful, I feel, about 33 Variations (which I like but don’t love) is the interweaving of all of the design elements and the theatricality which it creates. Here’s a quote I found inspirational:
The simple idea is that the theater is a medium. We know how to speak through film so well, so it feels like we’re never really going to learn to speak through theater. We need new theatrical forms, we need new ways of expressing our ideas. We still have so much work to do in trying to freely figure out how theater speaks, so, to me, this play is an exercise in that. It’s a play with music, it’s a play with dancing, it’s a play with singing, it’s a play with video… It really tries to redefine how the theatrical space is used. The audience seems to be very taken with it. I think people are hungry to have intelligent conversations in the theater.
Speaking of inspirational playwrights, I don’t know if any of you have been following the controversy over a high school in Oregon that banned a production of Steve Martin’s Picasso at the Lapin Agile. I was extremely moved by his response and his offer to produce the play outside of the high school.
Someday if I have time I may try to make this curried cauliflower soup. It looks super easy and tasty.
On my bus ride back to New York from DC I spent some time watching The Divine Comedy music videos on my iphone. It made me happy. Here are a couple to maybe make you happy too: