Friday, October 30, 2015

Macbeth of the What, Now?

The question of why our show was called Macbeth of the Oppressed has come up several times, from several different quarters.  There was no evident reference to the work of Augusto Boal, and the idea of a near-future setting/forces of political correctness that showed up in some of the initial advertising flavor/promotion materials had fairly well evaporated by the time we got to rehearsals.

Now, I was simply an actor in this show, and the question was not addressed at length in the rehearsal room, at least not in my presence, but my thoughts on our arguably oblique title boil down to race, gender, and sexuality as they are presented/performed in civic and military life.

We live in a time and place where there is at least some kind of appetite for diversity in the world of creating theater. And while this impulse does intersect with the population in general, there is a decided lag in the public sphere.  We are still waiting for a female head of state in this country, and there are precious few out queer leaders of governments or military branches anywhere in the world.

Note that those links refer to positions held within the last single-digit number of years.  Note at the same time that some of the forms of oppression inherent in that fact would seem to have been absent, in some important ways, in the ancient world.  I contend that the title of our show asks what that might tell us about the concepts of 'progress,' 'power,' and, not least, 'oppression.'

And that's what I have to say about that.

Also, since we're on the subject of witches, Happy Halloween!