I think, then, as I wrap this monster up, that the thing to remember is that we are all of us aspiring towards the extraordinary.
This is not an easy, or necessarily “friendly”, field. Neither is the theater industry is a snake-pit either. (Hello Hollywood!) But the journey of the creative spirit continues to ask of us an incredible balance: making art for art’s sake is one thing, commercializing it quite another.
If a theater company is interested in diverse theater, or if a theatre company generally produces plays about/by men, and if I am a white female playwright, do I keep writing the way I have, or do I write more characters of color/or/male? How do we maintain our integrity in our strides to get ahead, be we author, producer, or artistic director, while we also strive to maintain cultural “fairness”?
Or is thinking about it too much a danger of another sort?
As a literary manager, I must remember to value balance – I would not want to see a whole season of plays written by “privileged white men” anymore than I would like to see a whole season of just about anything else. The key is to create a balance within the designated aesthetic of any given theater company… And the theatre company itself has every right to decide what that aesthetic is.
My job as playwright then is to try to find theater companies who’s aesthetic matches my own… or even (perhaps) those theatre companies who look to be open for a feminine revolution.
The struggle then continues to be both global and internal; to engage in the community we so want to conquer, but to do so as best we, the individual theatre artist, can. We will continue to juggle our own perspectives of what makes a play “good” and what makes it “necessary” and we will continue to fight for those that stir our convictions.
Meanwhile, there will continue to be conversations among those at the top and between those on the bottom, about how in the world to manage things better…
I guess, what I’m saying is, I can’t wait to be one of those people at the “top” – where the discussion is less about surviving as it is about setting the trends.