Mies Julie at ArtsEmerson

Watching Mies Julie at Arts Emerson, I was surprised by how, well, surprised I was. The story strayed so far from the original that, by the end, I had nearly convinced myself that the play would end on a positive note. Well played, cast and company, well played. The most striking element of the production […]

The Theatre of Failing: A Manifesto

I wrote this manifesto last night in about 10 minutes. If it is ill-formed, or incomplete, I welcome criticism and open communication. Discussion needs to happen, and it needs to happen now. I demand a theatre that denies the existence of fear. A theatre that stands with its toes over the edge and leaps, trusting […]

Equal Pay: A Tentative Cost-Benefit Analysis

This month’s American Theatre magazine had an interesting article by Eliza Bent entitled “Equal Pay, Equal Play.”  Bent talks about one of the topics a lot of people think about, but in the art world, often pretend not to care about: getting paid. The equal-pay, or parital pay, structure is one in which for every […]

You Good-For-Nothin’ Know-It-All

This post is for all those who are not the ‘official’ dramaturg in the room:             As I’ve embarked on dramaturgy on my own, I’ve come to a frightening realization: there is a mistaken, albeit very flattering, assumption by many people in the room that the dramaturg is the source of all knowledge on the […]

On Point: Art, Academics, and Checks and Balances

A friend of mine who loves ballet and dance sent me an incredibly interesting video about 2 weeks ago. The video, En Puntas, is by Javier Pérez, a Spanish artist, and features ballerina Amelie Segarra dancing on the razor sharp points of two knives on top of a piano. The images alone are visceral and […]

Get In My Belly

As a young dramaturg, still learning what it is that I actually do (which seems to change on a daily basis), the book The Process of Dramaturgy was an interesting approach to what we’ve been talking about, and a resource I will cherish for a long time. As I finished reading it, I also felt […]

Why The Hell Are You Laughing: Humor, Satire, and Cunning in Egypt

On Tuesday from 4-5:30pm, I had the privilege to listen to guest lecturer Dr. Hazem Azmy, a dramaturg from Egypt. He talked about drama in Egypt before and after the ‘Arab Spring,’ and I soon noticed that humor played a significant role in the revolution. From satirical posters criticizing President Muhammad Morsi, to Bassem Yousef’s […]

Sitting Down with ART Dramaturg for “All The Way,” Leslie Gehring: Part 2

The second half of my interview with Leslie Gehring. We talk more about her process, the validity of big names to draw audiences to regional theaters, and ways to keep the audience immersed in the world of the play before and after they take their seats. [Ed. Note: Missed Part One? Check it out HERE.] […]

Sitting Down with ART Dramaturg for “All The Way,” Leslie Gehring: Part 1

I was able to sit down with Leslie Gehring, the ART’s production dramaturg for All The Way. We talked, and here is the first section of the transcript, only lightly abridged: Z: Where does your process begin? Where do you start when you first get a text? L: It kind of depends on what shape […]

I Hate This Damn Book (Until)

As I sit at my desk, helplessly watching as sheafs of paper cascade onto the floor, furiously taking notes on a pile of books tall enough to make an excellent nightstand, and audibly moaning as I turn the 250th page of the day, I begin to resent the things I am forced to read. It […]

Mo’ Money, Less Art: A Response to “The Arts Can’t Rely On Money”

First let me say that I firmly believe great theatre and great art comes out of the worst circumstances. Langston Hughes at one point had a female patron who paid for his bills and the like, but he eventually turned away from her because he felt that the comfortable life, the life where his art […]

Multiculturalism: What does it mean (for us)?

I saw and read the article “Egypt: Correspondence Between Adrienne Kennedy and Nadia Maher” on Howlround, and once I finished it I immediately scrapped what I was going to write about for a single quote from the correspondence. While it was primarily about Ms. Maher’s thesis and it’s reception, with references to the events happening […]

Why The Middle East Should Take Center Stage

It’s no secret that the Middle East, for a plethora of reasons on social, political, and economic fronts that are too innumerable to write about here, is in the midst of a vast period of change. The number of revolutions, springs, coups, and uprisings in the past decade should very well fill us with sympathy […]