Artistic Statement

Artistic Statement

To make theater is to participate, is to create and be part of something that is greater than the sum of its parts. I believe in the theater as the best cure for isolation and despair. That’s a belief I had when I was young and naïve about theater and it’s a belief I hold on to.

One of the most frustrating things about attending theater in New York is the homogeneity of the audiences. They tend to be of the same race, same political bent, same financial bracket; and the plays we give them tend to reaffirm who they are instead of challenging them. How do we change an audience’s reality? How do we stimulate a real desire for understanding? And how do we as theater artists contribute to our audience’s homogeneity? What are we doing to shake things up, and why are we striving to make theater at all?

For me, it’s all about community—that classical Greek idea of theater as an expression of democracy, a coming together of all of us to tell our community’s stories, not just an elite few. As artists in this often brutal city we tend to get to sucked into selfish notions of what it means to succeed. We forget the importance of making theater for and with our community.

The grand irony here is that what I really want to do is get back to theater basics. The first theater was some Neanderthal creating shadow creatures on the cave wall and doing all the voices. There’s no divide between audience and stage, just a bunch of people crowded around a fire all enjoying themselves immensely. That is the quintessential live, communal, storytelling experience. That’s why I still care about making theater.