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Kamarck, Edward (ed.) / Arts in society: tenth anniversary issue

Chase, Gilbert
[Toward a total musical theatre],   pp. [25]-37 ff. PDF (16.6 MB)

Page 33

between reality and unreality." ' The                              
                       33    !
piece, which lasts 31' 20", has a score                            
based on time-space coordinates and
includes directions for the performers
such as, "Pour bag of steel pipes into
steel barrel" and "Wade through mud' to|
Wd 3 by 7,50" (i.e., to a certain place by a
certain elapsed time). The composer states
that "Film loops and specially prepared
movie sequences may be used." Speech
is not excluded: the dancer "may also
speak, but with discretion." A multi-media                         
work, "The Maze" is structured but
"open" to the extent that it allows for
certain options in performance (e.g., the
dancer may either dance or mime, speak
or be silent, and his movements are
This brief review of the musical theatre in
the U.S.A. over the past forty years-
spotty and incomplete though it be
(making no mention, for instance, of the
explosive entry of pop-folk-rock idioms into
our musical theatre) -  indicates that the                              
"unfulfilled opportunities" are not in the
creative work of our composers,                                         
writers, performers, and directors, but in
the conventional criteria and stultifying
standards of our so-called "Cultural
Centers," which exist primarily to                                 
perpetuate and promote the "consecrated
code" of "guaranteed success" -  mocking                 
"the need of modern man for creative
fulfillment" by offering packaged culture for
passive recipients, and expert "Guidance
in the Building-Up of the Personality"                             
through conditioned responses to the
outworn rituals of a routine repertory.
It is time to open other doors (fanfare of
music by The Doors) in the Magic Theatre
of Illusion and Reality.                                                

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