Posts Tagged A.R.T.

Getting Lively, Lush & Local With: Steve Smith

Who are you? Steve Smith

What do you do? I am the co-founder and administrative czar of CBACT, the Consortium of Boston-Area Children’s Theatres

Where are you from originally? Philadelphia

How long have you been working in Boston? 21 years

Why do you stay? Exciting city, great culture, the Sox…oh, and close to both ocean and mountains

What’s your earliest theatre memory? Falling asleep while watching the original Broadway production of Camelot….

What’s your first theatre memory in Boston? Seeing Shakespeare at the ART.

What was your first job in theatre? Techie-stage crew

What kind of theater excites you? Anything original and thought-provoking.

The Boston Theatre Conference is focusing on the lively, lush and local aspects of our theatre community. What do you think? I think it’s great. I’m looking forward to hearing from all of the many voices in the Boston theatre community.

YOUR TURN! Write to us here!

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Getting Lively, Lush & Local With: Joan Lancourt

Who are you? Joan Lancourt

What do you do? I’m an executive coach and consultant to non-profit organizations

Where are you from originally? New York City

How long have you been working in Boston? since 1972

Why do you stay? It’s got theater, art, dance and music, history, intellectual stimulation, variety, good restaurants, universities, etc. etc.

What’s your earliest theatre memory? Being back stage on the original set of Harvey and being given a big stuffed white rabbit by Dorothy McFadden who I believe was one of the producers

What’s your first theatre memory in Boston? Something Commedia dell’arte-ish at ART

What was your first job in theatre? have not had a paid job in the theater

If you could change one thing about theater, what would it be? Make it part of every school’s curriculum

What kind of theater excites you? Theater that is thought provoking

The Boston Theatre Conference is focusing on the lively, lush and local aspects of our theatre community. What do you think? I think we need to use the theater as a forum for engaging audiences in dialogues raised by each play, where the theater becomes a kind of civic space in a community and enables people to hear different points of view and have constructive conversations about those differences – where people can learn about and gain a larger context in which to consider the issues.

YOUR TURN! Write to us here!

 

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Why Theatre Matters

By Tyler York

Theatre stimulates the mind and spirit. Theatre gives back to those who participate in the process. It also gives to those who engage on other levels: audiences, supporters, and advocates.

The short video, Stage Matters, presented by Theatre Communications Group, a national organization devoted to promoting professional not-for-profit theatre, challenged me to consider if and why theatre matters.

As in any art form, theatre matters for a variety of reasons that depend on your perspective and experience. For me, theatre matters for emotional and intellectual reasons. As both an audience member and a theatre professional, I yearn to be challenged; I seek theatre that expands my understanding of the world and makes me question my personal point of view.

Theatre serves me, as an individual, in an emotional and intellectual way. Equally important, theatre also serves the greater community. Theatre has the ability to have a profound impact on the community that surrounds it.
Locally, when I consider the work being done in Boston and the surrounding communities, I naturally turn first to the major players, such as The Huntington Theatre Company, which must be commended for its breadth of additional programming designed to explore the context of the works being presented on stage, and to the American Repertory Theatre, who has a reputation for pushing its audience to step beyond their comfort zone and experience theatre in new ways. As an example, think of the A.R.T.’s production of the Punchdrunk theater company’s, Sleep No More, which was a multi-sensory adventure that went far beyond the typical theatre experience.

When thinking local, I also consider the smaller players. While by no means a small organization, the Citi Center’s education program, City Spotlights, jumps to mind as a shining example of how theatre is being used in Boston neighborhoods to build community. The program utilizes performance workshops, neighborhood ensembles consisting of intergenerational participants, and internships for high school students to explore important themes like violence and cultural identity. Another example, a favorite of mine, is Girl Talk Theatre. Girl Talk uses theatre to nurture and empower homeless, poor, and marginalized women.

These organizations and countless others are enriching the cultural dialogue of our community. Theatre does matter.

About the author:

A mid-western transplant to Boston, Tyler graduated from the BFA Stage/Production Management program at Emerson College, where he is now on staff as the Assistant to the General Manager of Emerson Stage . Tyler is also a consultant for Boston Lyric Opera’s BLO Bunch, a ticketing and social networking program for students interested in opera.

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