Just over a week ago I participated in an interactive event/conversation that cross referenced using performance and art with that of human rights.
The key topics revolved around the issues, roles and responsibilities that artists, activists and those within the media can and should embrace. The basic concept of the event allowed members of the auditorium to interact with the event only when sat on the large table in the centre of the room.
The events concept was conceived by Lois Weaver one of the founders of This is Live Art. The event explored the relationship surrounding art and theatre poverty from a number of angels and perspectives. These ranged from heartfelt personal experiences to wishy washy statements and points of view. The diversity within the crowd allowed for an interesting debate however there seemed to be a divide between those who wanted to make beautiful and interesting theatre and those who thought more pragmatically about how theatre and art can be used in order to evoke change. This divide seemed to stop the debate progressing and the conversation occasionally went stale in anticipation for a new subject matter or a controversial statement.
At one point I was gunned down by a theatrical purist seconds after suggesting the use of YouTube as a tool that the arts may wish to embrace in today’s video enriched society. Anyhow overall it was an interesting event with some interesting areas to take influence from.