Month: March 2009

Internet Helps Earn Its Keep

When I came across this video, I was fascinated with the potential that it shows. Give it a watch, and then come right back.

Iran: A Nation Of Bloggers

(in case you didn’t watch: the throughline is that the young and alternative of Iran are using blogs as a way to communicate and share things that their current social and political structures don’t approve.)

The Internet is already a dominant method of communication for many. Between Facebook, Twitter, or the host of other social networking or instant messaging systems, the strengthening of bonds between the people you (probably) already know has been cemented. Other information-based industries, like newsgathering or entertainment, are starting to embrace the concept of what digital distribution can mean.

But the dream of communicating with people across the world? More like sending a message through the internet to someone across the hall, scheduling the time to go see a movie. In a large part, we talk to people we already know, or who we know are ‘like’ us. Politically, ideologically, or even in terms of preference for entertainment. Most of the arguments and flamewars on messageboards and web groups are friction within a group of people already under one banner.

This ‘nation of bloggers’, speaking to each other and the world, is a glimmering of the ability to reach beyond. As we start interconnecting across the world, we are forced to start considering that problems affecting people somewhere else can affect us, too. It also shows that the hardest thing to control is thought. Despire the violence and restrictions placed on them, these bloggers communicate in an act of bravery and liberation. In the current global economic crisis, the worst thing we could do is ignore the voices of others.

What kinds of decisions would we make if we knew someone in the midst of a war zone or a riot, someone whose life we’d been following and sharing? How would we feel if suddenly they stopped appearing in your Facebook?

(Ultimately, all of this idealism is undermined by the fact that the video doesn’t actually provide any links to prominent Iranian blogs. But I’ll trust your powers of Google to track a few down.)

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Robo-Hamlet Takes The Stage

Having just finished working on a show, this seemed like a fitting link to share.

BBC NEWS | Asia-Pacific | Actor robots take Japanese stage

Starving actors can now also worry about losing their jobs to automation, too.

Robots on stage isn’t entirely new; Karel Čapek’s play, R.U.R. (Rossum’s Universal Robots), premiered in 1921. It’s interesting that we are almost a century away from then, yet the whole android servant future still hasn’t taken place. On different scales, the story is the same; indentured robo-servants learn to yearn for the freedom of their masters.

I’m intrigued with some of the possibilities this can raise. Instead of making the story about robots, imagine what other forms of theatre you could develop using them as performers. I can see it especially fitting for them to play Beckett: when they’re done the show, they’ll reboot and keep waiting for Godot, not even realizing they’ve done it all before…

Self-Promotion

It may have been presumptuous for me to have blogged about getting back into the blogging saddle, just as I started working on a show.

Oh well. At least I’ve got some content to share: the details of the show. If you’re in Calgary and have the chance, come check it out!

Theatre BSMT presents…

The Woods
by David Mamet

March 12th – 21st, 2009
Pay What You Can/Preview Night March 11th

performances at EPCOR Centre’s Motel
(2nd Floor across from the Big Secret Theatre)

Tickets $15
Show starts at 8pm
for tickets call 403-690-2693
http://www.theatrebsmt.com

Director:   Jason Mehmel
Mentor:    Karen Johnson-Diamond
Starring:   Jeremy Mason and Truus Verkley
Set Design:  Cassandra Christie
Light and Sound Design:  Amy Dettling

Theatre BSMT is proud to bring you one of David Mamet’s hidden treasures The Woods.  Two young lovers Nick and Ruth escape for a romantic vacation to Nick’s family cabin.  As they discover more about themselves and their relationship dark feelings erupt into violence.  The Woods explores our need to love, be loved and our struggle to communicate that in our relationships.

Don’t miss this exciting opportunity to discover David Mamet’s most misunderstood play.  Mamet himself banned New York productions of the play in 1985 and it took over 10 years for him to allow the play to be produced again. Theatre BSMT is excited to take on the challenge of producing such an edgy piece of work.  Come see what all the talk is about!

Amy Dettling

The Woods, by David Mamet
The Woods, by David Mamet

Artistic Director
Theatre BSMT
403-690-2693