Some quick thoughts while David Rothenberg finishes up this week's radio offering.
As usual, there has been lots of music/film/theater-going. The Mike Daisey Yes This Man show at Joe's Pub was a standout, as was Casa Valentina. Daisey has been at the center of quite a little storm on ye olde internets, stemming from the fact that his original title for this piece co-opted the #yesallwomen hashtag (which itself of course was a response to the misguided, not to say asinine, #notallmen hashtag that sprung up as a defensive backlash to the anger stemming from the Santa Barbara murders) Some of the fiercest opinions came from people who seem [in my opinion] to have been blinded by the old Apple flap [missing the point and, at this point, boring] and/or driven to distraction by the notion of a white man weighing in on Women's Issues [completely understandable, necessary, and to a great extent the point of the show - and this is where it gets interesting: where does he get off doing this? Can anyone speaking from a place of privilege have something valid to contribute to the discussion? Where are the female, trans, queer, not-white-male monologists and performance artists taking on this topic at Joe's Pub? Or anywhere that gathers the kind of media attention that 1) goes along with the Public Theater or similar venues; or 2) seems to pop up when a famous, or semi-famous, man has something to say. Is he just a self-absorbed performer who needs to be loved?] Yes, I get the irony that I am a white dude making this commentary. My opinions on this topic are extremely humble.
And, it seems that some people are developing some strong opinions without actually seeing or hearing the work, which in my view is riveting, multi-faceted, and significantly more nuanced than some of the critical reaction would suggest. If you want to go to the crux of it, audio downloads of this and a whole bunch of Daisey's other work is free for the asking.
Another worthwhile link is this old interview with the late, great Eli Wallach, departed a few days ago, who was a hero on a bunch of levels, and not just because he took time out of the goodness of his heart to talk to a friend of mine who was doing a Tennessee Williams role in Boston that Wallach had originated in New York about 50 years earlier.
Much happening these days. Houseguest next weekend. More to come...