Saturday, April 30, 2011

The Best We Can Do?

Tonight I was duly disappointed...
in my generation.
In our society.
In my passion.
And in my college.

The college I am attending put on three One Acts this weekend. Each act was directed by a theatre student.
I almost auditioned. I didn't, because I was afraid I wouldn't have the margin for rehearsals every night.
Now, for a different reason, I'm glad I didn't.
The first act of the play consisted of, as best as I can remember,
  • At least three uses of the middle finger (once was two hands at once)
  • four uses of the 'F' word
  • two uses of the 'S' word
In the FIRST ACT alone-- which was about a thirty minute production!! The second act, thankfully, was actually not insulting. The third act started out as a bit questionable, but when the discussion quickly turned to a man doing lewd sexual act with a woman and his desire to hurt her with fingernails... along with the 'A' word and another naughty word... my friend and I had to get up and leave. 

I wish I had asked for my five dollars back.

I was, when I was three years younger, seriously naive, and overly optimistic about our society, an aspiring theatre major. 'Was' is the operative word. Now, I realize that if this is the best a community college in the heartland of America (and the Bible Belt) can do, then I have no hopes of ever going to New York or L.A. and finding any form of media I would ever want to be a part of.

I thought the Arts was all about expressing yourself in a creative way. Forgive me, but I do not consider the use of the 'F' word or the middle finger as expressive. I consider it just the opposite-- an uneducated, offensive, and obtrusive way of expressing yourself. It's what one resorts to when he or she has such a small vocabulary that he or she is unable to find a word to describe such strong feelings he or she is experiencing! If you are a talented enough writer, actor, or director, you shouldn't ever have to stoop to such a low level to express what you are feeling with the middle finger or the F bomb!!! You shouldn't want to!  Aren't there facial expressions, other words, other (non-offensive) gestures to get across what you are wanting to say?!?! Isn't that what you go to a college acting class to learn?? Do we have to resort to using a high schooler's expressions of disgust on a college stage?? Aren't we better educated than that?

I am ashamed to say that a portion of my college tuition went to support the creation of that production. And, better yet, my college tuition has hiked all in the name of building a bigger, better theatre to host more of these such productions!

That isn't art. That is a lewd, disgusting, uninspired, uneducated use of theatre. Directors have captured the attention of fellow human beings who want to be drawn in by the stage, not turned off by it. If this had been my first theatrical production to attend, I would never go back to a play ever again.

 Just for the record, the people in the audience weren't entertained by these little immature obscenities. I could tell by their reactions--they were shocked and not appreciating or enjoying what they were seeing. I'm afraid this is only a small glimpse of our culture's new norm: a steady decline of morals and a steady rise of immoral and offensive gestures/words to get our points across. 

Wake up, people. We can do better than this.

No comments:

Post a Comment