Theater and #MeToo: & # 39; There's new anger in women's stories & # 39; | step

Katie Arnstein tells the story of a day at a drama school when the tutor instructed her to do a graduation show as "Because it is a blonde with big breasts". Giving information to Arnstein's solo show Sexy Lamp, performed at the Edinburgh Fringe this month, is one of several experiences. The title comes from the writer Kelly Sue DeConnick's theory. If you replace the female character with a lamp and the story still works by default, you may need another draft.

Arnstein feels galvanized by the #MeToo movement, which has undergone numerous claims about rape and sexual assault in Harby Weinstein since 2017, so her play on shocking revelations about auditions and notifications of phone alerts Wrote "I was inspired by the power of those who have been abused in the acting industry," Arnstein said. "This is a challenge that continues to face because of my edition of the #MeToo story, the journey of becoming an actor, and the gender."

She did not commit abuse on stage. Some playwrights have taken directly the story of Weinstein and dealt with the charges in an imaginary and sometimes trivial way. At first there was David Mamet, famous for preconceived notions of power and abuse, often bent through carnivorous masculinities in the play. He announced in early 2019 that John Malkovich was working on a "dark clown," Bitter Wheat, starring the embarrassing movie tycoon Bain Fein.





Shocking Revelation ... … Katie Arnstein in a sexy lamp.



Shocking Revelation … … Katie Arnstein in a sexy lamp. Photo: Murdo MacLeod / The Guardian

Bitter Mill landed the wrong way in London this summer. But Steven Berkoff beat Mamet with a 45-minute monologue, Harvey, who still became a workshop when performing at the London Playground Theatre in February for the first unblocked play that embodies the story from a predator's perspective. In static performance, Berkoff sat in the middle of the stage, barely in a track suit bottoms and a t-shirt. Berkoff's narcissistic and illusory character sought to involve women who met him in a hotel room, providing partial confession, monologue, a partial justification for his actions. The monologue was interspersed with a violent summary of abusive encounters, from hotel room assaults to brutal masturbation episodes.

Mamet and Berkoff's drama preparations questioned timing and sensitivity. Did we want to be in the sex offender's head when the story of inaudible women and victims began to be dramatized?

Other directors and playwrights mobilized a plan of action for women's views. Royal art director Vicky Featherstone curated BBC4's monologue series Snatches in a former female lineup of writers, directors and actors. Among them is Compliance, a drama by Abi Morgan that meets a senior producer in a hotel bedroom and writes about a young female actor who “goes out of the scene”. Robin La Garai was one of the first women to talk about Vinestein, explaining the audition he participated in Savoy's hotel room when he opened the room in a bathrobe. Garai, then 18 years old, reflected how his feelings were “in violation”, but such behavior was accepted in an “very misunderstood” industry.

There were also indications of implications of silent women of the past, the most prominent of which was Emilia, co-produced by Nika Burns, and Morgan Lloyd Malcolm dramatized the life of poet and contemporary William Shakespeare's Emilia Bassano. Lloyd Malcolm claimed to have received unacknowledged inspiration for his play. Burns said that commissioning in 2016 was written after the Weinstein case created a headline. “Emilia could not publish in her time because she is a woman. Is that you want to hear a female voice. "





Unrecognized Inspiration… Emilia by Morgan Lloyd Malcolm.



Unrecognized Inspiration… Emilia by Morgan Lloyd Malcolm. Tristram Kenton / The Guardian

Rose McGowan, who claims to have been raped by Weinstein, held a woman show this month in Edinburgh and involved the audience in a "healing journey of discovery." #MeToo plays by more female writers are in the pipeline. Emily McLaughlin, new director of the National Theatre, talks about the outstanding development of the writer who “found a great device to see sexual abuse and harassment in the film industry”.

In the United States, there are a variety of dramas related to #MeToo, including The Pussy Grabber Plays, inspired by the stories of women accused of Donald Trump being sexually assaulted or harassed. Co-creators Kate Pines and Sharyn Rothstein dramatized their testimonies. “I thought Trump's women were the pioneers of women with Wine Stein,” Pines said. "The story about Trump was largely ignored and relegated to the footnotes of the election."

Natasha Stoynoff, a journalist who dramatized the story at The Pussy Grabber Plays, thought it was important to preserve his account in a more complex way than his account appeared in a news clip. “Kate and Sharin wanted to go deep into the women's story. We all wanted to look like a flashing face on the TV screen, like a victim of a serial killer. . "If a man is better aware of his behavior with respect to women, it's progress," she says.





'Change happened and the wine stein collapsed ..... Vicky Featherstone.



'Change happened and the wine stein collapsed ….. Vicky Featherstone. Graeme Robertson / The Guardian

Pines booked through Bitter Wheat. “I'm not interested in his perspective. Playwright Mathilde Dratwa composed a play about David Mamet. I'm writing a play about Harvey Weinstein. And between them I want to see it. ”Do men have to tell a woman's #MeToo story at all? Of course, Featherstone says. "We can't start censoring the artist," he added. "The only two plays that face the predator are by two middle-aged men."

Rothstein thinks this is a symptom of an imbalance in the industry. “The first major West End production of the #MeToo story is delivered by a white American male. This fact alone represents a much deeper problem and how the system is organized. Mamet should not write about this amazing topic. His play should not be the only play in the West End. A vision of everyone, including survivors of abuse, is needed. "

Liv Warden's theatrical anomaly at the Red Lion Theater in London in January was about a fictional gloomy media tycoon. The warden decided not to appear on stage. He is a silent figure and his three daughters who have to deal with the fallout of his misconduct are the focus of her conspiracy. "when [Weinstein] “I saw that he had a wife and two children. One of my first thoughts was about them and how this would change their lives. I wanted to show the gray part. There is no victim predatory division here and there is a question as to why the women associated with these men did not say anything. ”

But as long as they responsibly communicate men's stories on this subject, I think women in the theater are also worth listening to stories on this subject. Priscilla Holbrook is part of a work that polarizes the lives of male sex offenders in the American rural community. Performed at the Edinburgh Fringe, America Is Hard to See consists of music and lyrics written by Holbrook and is a rhetorical based on oral interview. Hall Brook says, “We see our victims mainly through their stories. She added that what is essential to a drama about sexual abuse is to adjust those who experience it to the possibility of trauma. "& # 39; Does your art get hurt again or move to a wider and expanded place?"





Testimony was distilled into drama… The plot grabber plays.



Testimony was distilled into drama… The plot grabber plays. Photo: Jenny Anderson

Hotel room scenes from Bitter Wheat show Malkovich's character attempting coercive sex with a young actress. Burns says: “It's a really important scene. "It must be unnoticed to men because men don't see her or profess her."

However, Berkoff's and Mamet's dramas are closely related to real events, giving little insight into what's already known in news articles. Featherstone adds, “What will be added to the theater when something comes in the news? In recent years, she said, “I saw no new anger and fear in the women's story. You don't need or want to make your favorite female character on stage. The work discussed after #MeToo was already under development before the Weinstein incident. He's changed and collapsed. ”

Lynette Linton, art director at the London Bush Theatre, says the #MeToo movement was slow to accept the story of colorful women. “At first, we focused on white American women.

Such stories should be explained at all cross complexity and fullness. Burns says that sexual harassment is a topic that doesn't go away. “I'm sure there are more women writing this story. Do not force it to be too fast. "

Sexy Lamp is upstairs in West Leicester on September 12-13. Bitter Mill is in the Garrick Theater in London until September 21.

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