The role of the critic in the modern theatre is one of heartache and the temptation of hatred. Only in the theatre can a single review kill a show.
The Greeks made a bold move and removed the question of morality from the secular world and replaced that mandate with the universal ideal of ethical behavior governed by laws. We became a people of rules and laws and ethics in the state — making us completely unique in the world — because no other competing species for our time and space is able to cognitively think, make value judgments and create a standard, equitable, criteria for living as citizens that requires we help each other instead of trying to kill each other. We are ruled by our minds and not our emotional instincts. We have patterns of written expectation we agree to adhere to in order to get along with each other — and the role of the historic Church in antiquity was to mediate the meticulous, and sometimes tenuous, dyad between a people and their state — and to help regulate an effervescent values system and to negotiate a context for living a moral life in a shapeshifting world.
As an ASL instructor at HardcoreASL.com, and as co-author of books on American Sign Language and as co-sponsor of the sosASL.com emergency communication website and, most importantly — as the Hearing husband of a Deaf Wife — I was shocked to learn a major hospital interpreter teaching program in the New York City area is instructing its students that the role of an interpreter in the patient/doctor dyad is one of a “clarifier.”
What is the role of the Artist in society?
Many of my Arts and Literature friends are out on the street in these hard economic times and I am curious if you think the Arts are even necessary today. Are our times too dire for the Artist mentality and only hard work and labor matters?
The role of the writer in society is one of a questioning dissent.
It is not enough for the writer to merely go along with the status quo or to live in the mainstream meme.
The nature of the director in any form — movies, television, stage, radio — is to serve the spirit of the script.
A director is not the master of the script — the director must be a slave to the written word in order to understand the greater purpose of the writing.
Many directors believe they are co-authors of a work and that is wrong.
Weak authors create strong directors and that wrongful power dyad is always terrible for the script.
A script is not a blueprint or an architectural dream.
A script is the bones, sinew, muscle, heart and being of any project.
For anyone other than the author to change the work in situ or to re-arrange established ideas on the page is to threaten the very core of the project that risks creating the common and the ordinary failure that reeks in the marketplace and is immediately forgotten by those in the audience who writhe and yearn for meaning in their escape into entertainment.