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Alone With Theatre

I spend a lot of time by myself. I would say I prefer to be alone during most parts of my day which is incredibly inconvenient as an extrovert. But, even when I do get a chance to be by myself, I rarely am alone. The digital age has made it increasingly difficult for people to actually experience moments of being truly alone.

This was discussed in an article by Tracey Moore, who spoke about an age where actors do not understand being alone, flirting, or boredom… or at least the sense of boredom we understand. This is highlighted by stories of students not knowing how to sit on a bench alone, jumping straight to sex when told to flirt, etc…

I am lucky enough to be on the threshold generation of technology that grew up without (or at least partially without) the internet, instead growing with the internet. Its why us early 20s are pretty good at navigating both the digital and actual worlds. We understand what its like to be in a room alone without the impending text. We didn’t always have an algorithm that would tell us what the best rap album for us to listen to would be. We didn’t always rely on Buzzfeed for… well in some cases everything….

I digress… Theatre is an art that demands a counter to the digital world… Now Im not saying there cannot be mixed media, but it seems theatre pulls people off the cloud for a moment and makes them be with eachother in the moment. Its an energy like none other, and one that teaches important lessons. There is immediate result to actions and a sense that your presence matters. This is solely noting the audience at this moment…

When we get to actors it goes deeper. Acting teaches us. When I have had to sit alone in a room full of people… really act as though I am alone and try and discover what it means to be alone while people watch, I learn. I become more aware of myself as an individual, disconnected from the cloud and it scares me that a generation might not know what that is.

Theatre is our chance to disconnect. It is a place where we can teach others how to disconnect as well…. Perhaps by disconnecting from the internet we can connect a bit more with eachother.

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