I had to write this for a class and I thought I’d share it.
I am a stage manager. I am a part of the world that makes art happen. I want to be in an area that promotes art. I will be treated as an artist. I will be seen as a vital member of the art making team.
In theater, I am there to make sure stories are told. Whether the story is about our hopes, dreams, failures, passions…our stories must be told. In dance, I will help show the beauty of our bodies and movement. I will make sure stories are told through movement and without words.
I will be a part of art that supports and promotes women in the arts. Women directors and writers are few and far between because they are not recognized. I will seek out plays that are written by women and make sure that their stories are told. I will seek out plays that are directed by women and make sure that their vision is seen. I will seek out plays that are about women’s issues and make sure that our stories are told.
I will be a part of art that continually thinks about sustainability. I will make sure stories are told in a way that makes our world better and more beautiful. I will continue to think how I can include sustainability into my job and encourage others to do the same.
Storytelling is one of the most powerful ways to understand ourselves and humanity. I will help voices be heard and seen. I will be someone who helps tell stories and tells them well.
So I’ll admit it. I take several of those stupid Facebook quizzes. They are a complete waist of time, but for some reason fun to take. They have no purpose except for fun. The most recent one I took was called “Which American Playwright are you?” I ended up being William Inge. I didn’t really think anything about it. He’s a great playwright so I was satisfied. However, Karen Barker, my former professor, commented on it: “I bet they don’t even have any women playwrights in that quiz, do they?” I knew she was probably right so I went and checked. She of course was. The playwrights on the quiz are: Neil Simon, Tennessee Williams, William Inge, Georg Cohan, and Arthur Miller. (It’s also interesting to point out that they are all white male playwrights.) All of these playwrights are great and important to theater history, and I think anyone who studies theater should know about these playwrights. However, it is sad that all the female playwrights get lost in those names.
This reminded me of one of my favorite days in “History of Theater”, which is a class I took in Undergrad with Dr. Bob. He had this tradition every year of proving a point that a certain group of playwrights were the most famous playwrights ever (except for Shakespeare). He had ever student in the class list their 5 favorite playwrights. Every year his point was proven without failure. Students would always say names such as Tennessee Williams, August Wilson, and Arthur Miller. However, one year (my year), his point was not proven. Only one student in the room said Tennessee Williams. Everyone else was saying names like Jenny Laird, Rebecca Gilman, Mary Zimmerman, Tina Howe, and many more. Dr. Bob said that was the first year that ever happened. This was a day I was so proud to be a part of Northwestern College. This is certainly a tribute to my mother and Karen Barker who made a point of introduction female playwrights to the students at Northwestern. If you asked me today who my favorite playwrights of all time are I would say: Suzan Lori Parks, Wendy Wasserstein, Adrienne Kennedy, Rebecca Gilman, and Tina Howe. Maybe it’s just as bad that all of my favorites are women. But at least I know about them.
I hope Dr. Bob is still having trouble with proving his point. 🙂