Glass arciTEXTure

On arciTEXT 2014, from Artistic Director Mark Boergers….

Sitting around a dining room table, reading aloud all of our submissions for arciTEXT 2014, I became amazed at thearciTEXT2014logo5.0 power of theatrical interpretation to both create, challenge and expand dialogue on any number of topics.  In a world where most of our “conversation” comes in the form of one and two sentence long text messages or comments on a webpage, its less and less common to experience a topical real-time exchange of ideas.  Once artistic interpretation is added to the mix- including imagery, nuance, allusion and metaphor- this exchange of ideas becomes so colorful, so full of interest that it almost seems unrecognizable.  And at first, almost uncomfortable.  At this particular dining room table, the discussion was fast-paced, disparate, impassioned and meandering… sometimes bordering on a debate, sometimes a sharing circle of pertinent information, and sometimes an education forum based on personal experience or learning.  …..Sometimes my head felt like it was going to explode. An outcome, it turns out, that is one of the reasons arciTEXT was created in the first place.

My company members and I spent hours reading, conversing and sharing ideas with the only parameter of discussion being this idea of “The Glass Ceiling.”  Each mind involved in this discussion- both those physically at the table and also the talented playwrights who were represented only by their work on the page- brought personal perceptions, histories and opinions about this tiny little phrase.  As a company, the genesis of The Arc is the concept of archetypes- which loosely defined are concepts, characters, stories, etc that apply to the entire human audience regardless of age, race, time period and indeed, gender.  Which is why “The Glass Ceiling” is such an interesting starting off point.  As a colloquial phrase, it most definitely refers to something gender-based.  However, as an archetypal concept, it describes a feeling or a situation that any person can be placed in.  As an adjective matched with a noun, it simply denotes a see-through panel above our heads.  Which is why our playwrights are given only the inspirational phrase and then asked to write a piece “taking any and all liberties.”

What you will see on March 23rd and March 24th is a group of very talented and very creative minds asked to create theatre based simply on whatever inspiration can be garnered from those three words.  The resulting work is meant to inspire a multi-faceted and colorful dialogue on any number of topics as we bring an objective audience, complete with all your history, experience and opinions, into our theatrical think-tank.  This dialogue may be meandering or perhaps disparate and impassioned- but always a real-time and topical exchange of ideas.  Maybe your head will explode- but that’s just the chance you’ll have to take.

Can’t wait to be a part of the discussion.

Mark Boergers
Artistic Director, The Arc Theatre