This seems a little late as the reading of Chisa's The Subject happened last month (Jan 24, and 25) but its had some time to sit in my mind and ferment a bit, especially since I sat onstage reading the stage directions through a two long days of rehearsal and two public readings. The play centers around Phil Waterhouse, a famed documentarian who learns the effect of being an objective eye.
You see, it was during rehearsal on that Sunday night, that Chisa asked the cast a question to help them understand it more, and I have to say that it's something that has truly stuck with me. She explained that the play was partially inspired by the story of the late South African photojournalist and Pulitzer Prize winner, Kevin Carter. If you don't know his name, I'm sure you've seen his work. You see, the reason he won the Pulitzer is because of a photo he took of a toddler in Sudan - you've probably seen it. A small child, completely emaciated, struggling to stand, and a vulture looming close in the background. This haunting image has been used countless times since it was shot in March, 1993. While the fate of the child is unknown, we do know that Carter suffered at the hands of the vulture. Not physically, no, but just months after winning the Pulitzer, he took his own life, citing the haunting images he immortalized as a reason for the act.
Chisa asked the actors one of the most important questions I've ever heard in my life, and I wish I had asked myself: "What is our duty as artists?"
|Mind = Blown.|
(MUCH more after the jump)