Friday, February 24, 2012
Research and Respect
Directing allows me to continue working on old material and new material. There are themes that call me back, to re-examine, re-explore, and ideally, to mine deeper. I find this rewarding, as I develop a stronger understanding of the world and my own character within it. One of the aspects I also love about theatre work is the built-in string of opportunities to investigate new topics. I love directing plays that delve deeply into some subject that was previously unfamiliar to me. I enjoy the research, and the journey can feel like digging up buried treasures (although I have to acknowledge to myself that this work I'm learning about is no buried loot, but the daily effort and expertise of others). Accurately depicting someone else's profession or passion is a challenge. In a few weeks or months I can't expect to learn an entire new field. What I can do is respect the lives depicted, devote time to diligent research, and trust in the playwright's work as well. Showing another's life onstage with specificity can help us understand one another better. Within the specifics, the commonalities, the universals, can help us feel connected with one another.