Monday, August 9, 2010

Hedwig and the Happy Meal

Had a wonderful blogger meet-up this weekend: Hux and I went to a play with Irrelephant, Mrs. Phant, Dancehall and Tolstoy. Sans kids! Went to see a very good production of Hedwig and the Angry Inch. I won't say great, as I had a few quibbles with the production - the music is kinda forgettable - but the brilliant long monologue that weaves between the songs and the pure theatrical power of the guy doing the monologue (Nick Sugar) more than made up for it. Good dinner beforehand, conversation and laughs and cigars in the backyard afterward (I was only a spectator during the cigar bit, fearful the tobacco would reawaken my long dormant cigarette habit).

I love theater. It's hand-made, not focus group tested and mass-produced, with merchandising tie-ins at McDonald's (though if they threw little Hedwig action figures into Happy Meals I'd buy one). It's intimate; you're right there in the room with them, you can look each other in the eye. Each production is different, and each night within an individual production is unique as well. No two shows are exactly alike.

If all the movie theaters burned down tomorrow, people would come together in garages and living rooms and act out stories. And sure, they'd churn out a few Diehards and Pretty Womans - hey, I liked Diehard too - but I'm guessing it's far more likely people would tell stories of their lives, the lives of the people they loved, stories of the world around them, the sky above.

5 comments:

Laurita said...

Wow. This was a great post. I completely agree with you about theatre. And I loved your description of people getting together to tell their stories. Reminds me of the story telling sessions my grandfather used to have with us. Old stories from his youth that had new details each time they were told.

This is the first thing I read this morning and it has really given me something to think about. Thanks.

Clowncar said...

thank you laurita. I think it would make a nice post-apocalypse novel: folks acting out stories from their lives for the community.

Fresca said...

I agree with Laurita: great post. Except the cigar smoke makes my throat close up.

"people would tell stories of their lives"...
and also reenact old Star Trek episodes!

(Hm. What a great theme for a short story:
100s of years after the apocalypse (not total, obviously), roaming theater troupes act out ST. I never write fiction, but maybe this time...)

Are you involved with theater-making anymore yourself? (Besides, of course, the theater of life?)

Clowncar said...

or how 100s of years later all the narratives from tv and movies would change and morph together. a mash-up of ST and Shakespeare, Diehard and Walt Whitman, Beckett and the Bible and American Idol.

not that I'm gonna write the book, but in my mind it'd alternate the 3rd person narrative of the post-apocalypse survivors with the narratives they act out to each other.

no theater anymore. other than puppets in the living room. I may in the future, though. there's precious little of it in Pueblo.

Margaret said...

"or how 100s of years later all the narratives from tv and movies would change and morph together. a mash-up of ST and Shakespeare, Diehard and Walt Whitman, Beckett and the Bible and American Idol."

FIC PLEASE.

(Stands for "fiction, please" - as in "write this!")