Written by Erica R., Program Assistant at FABnyc
Live performance has been a part of my life for a long time. It has presented itself in several forms, from dance to theater, spoken word to the ever-elusive genre of performance art.
As my relationship with the performing arts has grown – from baby ballet, to high school productions, to revolutionary theories in college, to real world applications here in the real world – I have witnessed an intellectual revolution take place in myself. It has been fascinating, and the self-reflection has been half the fun of exploring the New York art scene.
Being a part of FABnyc has been one of my luckiest scores in the city. At once I was submerged in a sea of “downtown theater” where high-flying morals and recycled storylines are mostly avoided, and the human experience – the experience of having an experience – is what’s valued.
Which brings me to some bittersweet news. The theater that played a vital role in starting this movement, birthed here in New York, will be leaving Clinton Street at the end of this month. The Living Theatre, leader of the “Beautiful, Non-Violent, Anarchist Revolution,” (and FAB’s Member of the Month) is presenting its last production, Here We Are, before their LES doors shut. As a recent New York Times article appropriately explained, “[a] mandatory activity is attending a production of participatory, experimental theater — especially at the primogenitor of it all, the Living Theatre.”
The Living Theatre’s historical significance is not what should be celebrated here, but their commitment to their mission – constantly pushing the boundaries of an artist’s purpose, the theater’s purpose and the audience’s purpose. “Part examination of historical anarchist movements, part indictment of the current sociopolitical order and part team-building love-in,” Here We Are is a beautiful example of how The Living Theatre (and Founder/Artistic Director/Playwright Judith Malina) has reflected upon itself, helping the ideology of living theater survive beyond the confines of a theater house.
Here We Are will be running until next Saturday, February 23rd. You can see the schedule and buy tickets HERE.