What's Happening

"The Plague's the Thing" Panel

By Cymbeline Anthropocene on Feb 25, 2021 at 08:03 PM in Fringe Projects

In late January, three artist came together to discuss the state of theatre in a panel titled "The Plague's the Thing: Theatre Before, During, and After the Pandemic." Featuring playwright Colleen Murphy, poet Gary Geddes, and host Jerry Wasserman, the talk was hosted by the University of British Columbia's Green College, in the series "Medium to Extreme: Unlocking the Power of the Arts."

The panel begins with Colleen Murphy performing her poem "Mouth Ghost," which contemplates the ghosts both fictional and non-fictional that have always inhabited physical theatre spaces, as well as those who are joining them now that "a thousand shows have died" with the shutdown of live theatre during the pandemic. What persists during this transformation, Murphy writes is the following: "theatre's not safe, it's not sacred, it's just you and me, here, and out there somewhere, electronically connected in this moment in time between what was and what's next."

The conversation continues to cover how pandemic measures have translated the three-dimensional art form of theatre to the two-dimensional screen of performances on Zoom, the underfunding and job loss suffered by actors and other performers, and the hunger to return to the communal experience of live theatre. Watch the video above, and share your thoughts with us on Twitter at @ecocymbeline or using the hashtag #cymbelineanthropocene.