Friday, February 6, 2009

AN ANTHOLOGY OF OPTIMISM


While the USA is in the grips of the extremly urgent debate whether or not presidents should be allowed to work in shirtsleeves while in the Oval Office, Europe is -- uh -- hopeful.

Or in need of hope, rather, one would think.

We over here dragged you Europe-folk down with us, this century isn't exactly shaping up the way we envisioned it, and if looking back at the 20th century is any indication of what is to come, a world war will break out in the next decade or so.

Time, then, for an Anthology of Optimism!

The Flemish theater group Campo thought so too, and they are traveling a small part of the world (Linz, Vienna, Copenhagen, Brussels, and perhaps next year NYC) with exactly such a thing. It's a snowball of a piece, picking up new texts as it rolls across the continent. Yours truly donated Awake to the performance -- a piece now so obviously entrenched in the dark damp days of the Bush regime that rereading it only shows how far we've traveled [politically and societally, if not economically] in the past few weeks. Pieter, 1/2 of Campo, emailed me to tell me that the premiere in Linz went exceedingly well: People were 'moved' and 'intrigued'. Move you, intrigue you, by chance make you shake a little in your boots -- that's what we artists are after.

I hope to see the performance when/if it travels across the Atlantic, but some of you might live closer by the action and be able to witness it all sooner.

Optimism! It's the new naivite.

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