How do you live, when the focus is survival?

The sun shone today in Vancouver. Lovely

Today was a magnificent day, primarily because of a talk Peter Hinton (AD of the National Arts Centre) gave with Rwandan theatre artist, Odile Gakire Katese, about theatre in Rwanda, and the re-development of a culture after a massive genocide. There was some fascinating questions raised surrounding how the culture is being developed, and how so much of the money is being put into work about “genocide” and “aids”. Work that is about the celebration of culture and new-forms of story-telling that is not stereo-typically “topical” is having a more difficult time finding funding. It really made me think about funding and how/why we fund work–and what are the keys to the strengthening an environment’s cultural roots through theatre. That’s why we’re all doing this, right, because our cultural relationship to the world shifted through theatre, enabling or inspiring us to join the the theatrical revolution. Or is it? Why are we doing this, anyways?

What IS the role of theatre anyways?

***

AN INTRODUCTION to KEN CAMERON, AD of the Magnetic North Theatre Festival:

Look for Ken at SummerWorks this year. Introduce yourself. Ask him questions about the festival. He also has a lot of great ideas about the business of theatre. He’s a Networking master. Ask him about it.

The next festival is in Ottawa, 2009, and they recently announced that in 2010, it will be in Kitchener, Waterloo. My first response to that news was “KITCHENER? SERIOUSLY? KITCHENER?” My second response was “KITCHENER? Huh. WHY?” and now I’m just left with wonder. What will it be like? Will it work? Will my relationship to Kitchener change? Is Kitchener not what I think it is? Does this make sense afterall?

Already my perception of Kitchener, Waterloo is changing because of Magnetic North being there 2 years from now. And perhaps, already, the choice to having it in Kitchener is making a whole lotta sense.

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