Bring Your Own Show


A friend invited me to a show that she was planning to attend last night called “The Dog and Pony Show (Bring Your Own Pony)”which was a one woman performance piece by Holly Hughes; lesbian, feminist, performance artist. I agreed to go because it had been a painfully long time since I’d been to see theatre of any kind and a one-woman show sounded like it might be something interesting and different.

I am interested to hear other women speak about themselves because I feel like my own life is somewhere outside the norm. Maybe I am hoping for reassurance that I am normal after all or maybe I am hoping to discover that there is no norm to be outside of. Whatever the reason I find the topic interesting.

The show was also free. I could hardly go wrong.

If you were to ask me what the show was about I’m not sure that I could tell you. Dogs, maybe? Or Lesbians? Or Feminists? A distrust of “The Wizard of Oz”? Agility training? These all seemed to themes that were trotted out and put through their paces without accomplishing anything obvious. I’m not saying the show was bad- it was just inscrutable. I could recognize the words but it was as if they were trailed together in one long sentence without a subject. Several times we would build up to the verge of a point being made only to have it slip away as a new topic took over.

The older that I get and the more I work in “entertainment” the less tolerant I am of productions that leave me feeling completely mystified. It feels inefficient to me. I come from a theatre background so I know that experimental theatre can be pretty difficult to get a toehold on but when your audience sits through an entire performance wondering if you are speaking the same language your performance is inefficient. It’s not bad. It’s not good. It’s just not reaching your audience- which is the whole point of performing.

I myself am not completely innocent of producing inefficient works, but I like to think that I am learning. Who knows- maybe I’ll even get around to making a point in this blog someday.

~ by Gwydhar Gebien on February 22, 2013.

One Response to “Bring Your Own Show”

  1. Great post.

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