Thursday, September 02, 2010
The prospect of a madman obtaining the power that this potent metal can confer has led this country into at least one war, and that same prospect threatens to involve us in another. As theater artists, we see ourselves as the custodians of spiritual uranium: through our command of our empathic and critical faculties, we have the potential to unleash chain reactions of personal and social transformation. We acknowledge the awesome responsibility this entails, and set ourselves the task of creating work that honors and harnesses this potential.
Recognizing, at the same time, the poet's injunction that "much madness is divinest sense", we see the theater as a place for madness; that is, for passionate vitality, radical freedom from constraint, and the willingness to see what others cannot or will not. We see the actor as one who is ready to surrender her whole being to the passions, cares and extreme circumstances of another, effectively inducing a kind of madness in herself, a radioactive madness. Having entered this altered state, the actor lures her audience into temporarily abandoning their immediate personal concerns and following her into the space between habits, a centrifuge wherein new forms of life can be glimpsed. We further celebrate the destabilizing power of laughter, which can expose the rigid postures that a debased culture offers as models of fulfillment.
THEREFORE: we see both the world and the theater as a URANIUM MADHOUSE, and seek to make a home for ourselves in both. To that end, we produce plays, both contemporary and classical, that attest to the challenge and difficulty of living in such a world. We produce plays that dramatize the bombardment of the fragile, unstable isotope that is human well-being and belonging by relentless rapaciousness, aggression and cruelty. In short, we produce plays that manifest the virtue of spiritual ambition, especially in the defense of the promise of civilization.