Monday, August 30, 2010


BAC has of late been using a nicely bracing strapline. It is, it says, “inventing the future of theatre”. This implies that by showing up there, perhaps for a Scratch performance, and giving some feedback on what you see, you can play a role in that process of invention: and that’s a good thing for audiences to feel. My construction of that sentiment is somewhat differently wired. As I said in my tiny contribution to Programme Notes a couple of years ago, “theatre is the place where people gather together to invent their future”. Not the future of theatre, but their future. The implication, which I stand by but won’t in this format try to justify, is that theatre is uniquely well placed to be the medium in which we re-engineer our social relationships and our way of being together communally as well as culturally. Faced with the inevitable but excruciatingly slow death of capitalism and a looming environmental crisis some of the consequences of which we might be quietly looking forward to, theatre could be the most productive technology at our disposal for thinking together about what comes next; about who we want to be to each other.

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