Just finished figuring out my schedule for classes till I graduate. As it stands right now I am going to finish off my last semester senior year with a major in Educational Theatre and a minor in Dramatic Literature as a part time student with only 7 whole credits. Student teaching a few times a week and Drama in Education II. Talk about saving money and getting a start on your life.
About three weeks ago I went to go see In the House of Bernarda Alba set in Iran. I was excited to see the show because, if anyone knows the story line, I thought the issues were relevant to Iranian culture. Instead, I was offended as it was a bunch of white girls making such a bold statement about not only Iran, but Islamic culture. Every actor, except the lead, was white and wearing the hijab and making the culture seem unstable and the show really depicted the culture as crazy. Instead of it being a statement of Islamic women crying for change, I felt it made the audience walk away with a vindication of their hatred for Islam.
Last night I went to go see Can We Talk About This? A physical theatre production by DV8 about multiculturalism. A man walked out on stage and the house lights came up on the audience. “How many of you would say your are morally superior to the Taliban?” No one raised your hand. “Let me repeat: how many of you would say you are morally superior to the Taliban?” I look around a few people awkwardly raise their hands. “It looks like about 10%. Let’s investigate why.” The show began promisingly. I thought their attempts were going to do what I had hoped for In the House of Bernarda Alba- this company beautifully put interview theatre with dance to show some of the darker sides the Taliban. I was thinking the show was going to balance it with embracing multiculturalism but I was very wrong. Each piece of dance was evidence after evidence of why Islamic people are evil. At one point of the show they even praised people that are Islamaphoic. I started to get angry. Very angry. The point of their show was to say that we don’t talk about issues of women’s rights or gay rights in the Muslim religion because we are afraid of being called ‘racist.’ Something, I have to say is a bit of truth. However, this show continued to break out pieces of the Qur’an showing that in their religion its okay to beat women. Suddenly the show changed from let’s work together to fight for rights to “us vs. them.” In the middle of the show, as I’m slowly getting more and more offended someone stood up, threw something at the stage and shouted “this is some Islamaphoic shit!!”
He was right. I mean, isn’t it crazy that there is something about theatre that it is the only real place for freedom of speech? There is something about the actors being lit on stage and us, as an audience, being in the dark. For some reason, as angry as I and I knew some of my friends were getting, we let the performance keep going. No one speaks. As mad as the show made me last night, I realized just how powerful theatre is. If you make a show short enough, people will listen regardless of what you have to say and if they agree or not. This was a potent example, but theatre really could be used to change people’s views and, essentially, change the world.
Still, to the show. At the end the audience clapped the loudest I’ve heard clapping since coming here. It was sad to me. They weren’t clapping because someone was finally trying to help women from the Taliban. The audience was clapping because they felt justified in their hatred against Muslim people. A professional show at The National Theatre just told them “it’s okay to be Islamaphobic. In fact, you should.” Again. It made me cry for humanity.
And I have three books out from the library on how to direct Shakespeare, Brecht’s Brecht on Theatre, and a whole book of critical essays on Midsummer Night’s Dream. And I’m actually not dreading it at all like I have for any other essay this semester. Things I need to incorporate into my future: acting, directing, Shakespeare/ Elizabethan history.
“Don’t you wanna own a piece of tomorrow?
I’m gonna be the one who shows you
cause I’m the one the vision flows through
& though you may not see what I see,
I’m a Boy with Dreams.”—Boy with Dreams, Edges, Pasek and Paul
I can’t give much away, but… One of my professors works with Punchdrunk Theatre (the creators of Sleep No More) and they are trying out a new project. They were looking for volunteers to try it out so naturally I had to go. Basically, they gave me an iPhone and you run around a landscape for 6 or more hours to find clues. Every time you find a clue it leads you to another station in the show. But the clues weren’t easy scavanger hunt things. I was, chasing actors for a half a mile in the woods, building a cross, digging the dirt with my bare hands, trudging through the mud in the pouring rain. Like the story was intense I and I was pulled into a closet by myself and someone smashed an egg on me. It was insane. I’m obsessed with the company and am so proud that theatre like this is forming.
According to a new study from Middlesex University, not many participants could distinguish correctly between quotes from British “Lad mags” and quotes from interviews with convicted rapists. This is really disturbing. If you think that rape culture and violent attitudes toward women don’t exist, read this now.
I don’t mind clutter. I don’t. I just mind dirt. I don’t want to live in a space with bits of onion on the ground. So probably about four or five times a week I wind up doing every dish in the sink. Its not that I care if you leave your dish in the sink, but honestly people, just clean it up in an hour or so. What you don’t realize is that we only have one cutting board, one pan, one pot of each size, etc. So if you just leave your crap in the sink, I have to clean it up before cooking my food.
But that’s whatever. Its the fact that I have cleaned the entire sink of dishes before and people have sat at the bar as I clean their dishes and done nothing. Not even said thank you. Granted, I am slightly OCD when it comes to dirt, so I’m not asking you to clean the counter, the stove, the microwave, and the floor like I do. But just put your freakin’ dishes away. Or at least say “thank you.” I mean, if I saw someone doing my dishes, I would feel horrible. Because, yes, I’m human and sometimes I don’t always have time to clean up the mess I made. But I always say thanks if someone does them for me. But today got me cause as I’m cleaning, someone in my apartment comes over and puts his things in the sink and just mumbles something that sounds like “here, thanks.” Wait. So.. You are watching me wash all of everyone’s crap, I didn’t even eat dinner here last night, and you put your lunch plate in the sink, expect me to clean it and walk away.
Be humans, people. I’m OCD. I’m not asking you to clean obsessively. Just be freakin’ courteous or if you don’t have time to clean up at least say “thank you.”
Forgive this rant. This has just been going on for the past three weeks.
I’ve always had lucid dreams before, but last night was something new. I even started asking the people in my dreams if there were real or just in my imagination. One person, who I know well, told me that they weren’t sure if she was real or not and then proceeded to tell me what time she thought it was; “its 5:30am,” she said. I woke up immediately after and looked at my clock. It was 9:30am, the exact time difference between the UK and the East Coast. I still don’t know if I actually spoke with someone from back home or not but all I know is that I would have absolutely no idea what time it is here, never mind on the East Coast (especially because the time just changed from 5 hour difference to a 4 hour difference because of daylight savings time).
Apparently it costs £110 to change the name over on the ticket, which is ridiculous. I was looking into going to Ireland over spring break and could get roundtrip tickets and hostels for a full week for that price. So, I’ll just wait to go to Ireland over spring break.
I might be in Ireland this weekend. Let me say that again. I might go to Ireland this weekend! One of my friends was going with a bunch of people for St. Patty’s Day. One of them dropped out and they offered me the FREE FLIGHT. I don’t know if I’ll have to pay for the hostels or not but whatever. A free flight is a free flight. I’ll have to miss three classes, but I could care less. Its a 3% grade penalty for an unexcused absence. #sorryimnotsorry. This semester is more about experiencing the world than getting a 4.0 in my classes. If an opportunity presents itself, I have to take it.
I really appreciate that you emailed me. It feels great that you want me to perform with you again. You are great. I literally just can’t live in Rhode Island another summer. I’m so sorry. But then, back in NY, all the theatres only want me as a SM. There is something so so wrong with this. Its time to start making the name I made for myself back home in nyc.
then I woke up with the sorest arms I’ve ever had. I actually can’t extend them all the way. I just don’t understand why it took 48 hours for me to feel soreness. I work out on Wednesday, I can’t move on… Friday? On the plus, the swelling on my wisdom tooth has gone down and I no longer talk as if I have cotton balls in my mouth. I guess the pain had move somewhere else.
I am finding, more and more as I get older, that the morning is the most spectacular part of a day. Its not even noon yet and I have gone for a 3.5 mile run, made breakfast, cleaned my room and kitchen, showered, found some new recipes, and went grocery shopping for the week. It seems every morning is filled with possibility. Its the very beginning of a new day. Its like a mini New Year. You can choose to change your routine and start anew if you wish. I don’t know, there is just something amazing about rising with the sun.
“The problem, often not discovered until late in life, is that when you look for things in life like love, meaning, motivation, it implies they are sitting behind a tree or under a rock. The most successful people in life recognize, that in life they create their own love, they manufacture their own meaning, they generate their own motivation.For me, I am driven by two main philosophies, know more today about the world than I knew yesterday. And lessen the suffering of others. You’d be surprised how far that gets you.”—Neil Degrasse Tyson, in an AMA on reddit, responding to a young man who asked how to find motivation in life.