What is it about theatre that draws us all in? Well, maybe not all of us, but it sure gets me and always has.
Growing up, my family wasn’t a very traditionally culturally active family, we more enjoyed sporting events and the gatherings of friends but we always went to at least one play a year. Usually, this play was performed by the local theatre troupe and was composed of people we knew from our town. The performances were amateurish but funny and we always had a great time. So much so that I joined my middle school theatre group for a year but as it turned out, I wasn’t that good and it took me away from what I loved most at the time, gymnastics. I am glad that I tried and I want to think that I could have been excellent at it … if I’d persisted 😉
Nowadays, I feel that theater is attracting more people and garnering more fans. Why is that? Is it that the storylines are better? Has the popularity of musicals engaged a different crowd that is now also addicted to regular performances? Is it that we need to be more “entertained”?
For me, the true magic of theatre is its limitations and also that it is one of a kind. Limitations in the sense of space and the fact that there are no special effects and everything happens in real-time. I tend to believe that thanks to these limitations, theatre brings out the best in creativity and gives you an experience that you can’t have in any other kind of media. One of a kind, that’s for sure. Have you ever seen two perfectly identical theatre performances? It’s just not possible with live performances and so they are unique every time.
This year, I decided to feed my passion for theatre and try to see as many shows as possible. Don’t ask me how I find the time because I still don’t know but I am doing it. I immersed myself by getting our family season tickets to the Vancouver Arts Club and by volunteering at the Cultch this year.
The productions are sometimes poignant like ‘Hold These Truths’ or unpredictable like ‘Kuroko’, sometimes audacious like ‘Gamète’ and even tragic like ‘A Thousand Splendid Suns’. My love for theatre is real and I am enjoying even the more unconventional styles of performance and to tell you the truth, I discovered that I even prefer them. I do still enjoy the big, fun and classic shows, but the productions that transport me, stir deep emotions and make me think about the world are simply more satisfying. Theater today is confirming that fresh, new and eccentric ideas can be expressed and that they make the best plays.
I even enjoyed the crudeness of last night’s play – ‘Infinity’ – as the performance integrated a lot of comedy and I found myself wrestling between admiration and annoyance. A feeling that I don’t believe I have experienced in any other play this year.
It’s mid-January though and as most of you know, I also like cinema. Since I have been in Canada, I am embracing the Oscars which means that I will take a few weeks “off” from theatre performances in order to watch the award-nominated movies before the big reveal on February 9, 2020. Would anyone be open to sharing their predictions?