Thursday, June 26, 2008

Silver Linings?

Many bloggers have commented on the spooky way that the demise of the famous Theatre de la Jeune Lune follows the arc of Mike Daisey's arch theory in his latest monologue, How Theater Failed America. In the monologue, Daisey talks about how regional theatre started investing in larger facilities at the expense of actually supporting, well, theatre.

It would appear that Jeune Lune had followed this script to a tee. I have not seen Daisey's monologue, (it is closed now,) but from what I have read of it there is another theme Daisey brings up, and it hasn't received as much play in the discussion of the Lune's shuttering.

Thomas Garvey at the Hubreview sees a silver lining in the closing of Theatre de la Jeune Lune, and it seems to align with a theory Daisey illustrates when talking about how he had to simulate masturbation on stage during a very weird production of a Genet play.

Here is Garvey responding to a commenter on his post about the closing:

No, I was not a fan of Jeune Lune. From what I saw of three or four
productions, I found them cold, derivative, and overbearingly brandishing a politics that graded rather obviously into narcissism. Their style seemed to be a superannuated variation on what Peter Brook was doing forty years ago, which was itself a variation on what Brecht had been doing twenty years before that. And I simply can't agree that our culture should be replicating the stances of
half a century ago; that would be like becoming a member of the D'Oyly Carte Opera Company, or the ART (which at least has as its excuse that it's promulgating the ossified theories of the academy). So, yes, I'm glad to see it admitted that the Jeune Lune didn't really have that much of a following; it doesn't mean, I don't think, that our local academic avatars will re-align their missions; but it does mean that they've been painted into an ever so slightly smaller theoretical corner. And that's still something.

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