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UK Theatres Want to Bring Societal Issues to Light Upon Reopening

'We don’t want the superficial any more,' said the National Theatre’s deputy artistic director, Clint Dyer.

UK Theatres Want to Bring Societal Issues to Light Upon Reopening

As live entertainment as we knew it begins to re-emerge, leaders at some of the UK's largest theatres are re-assessing what people are looking for from a stage production, The Guardian reports.

Playwright and actor Clint Dyer took on the role of the National Theatre's deputy artistic director in January.

"A lot of the work in the mainstream was there to say: 'Oh, this is the world that we know you like seeing,'" he said. "We don't want the superficial any more. People thought you can have a good night out if we rub off the rough elements, but now I think people are more willing to engage with the rough elements."

Ian Rickson, the artistic director and co-curator of Re:Emerge, said the political climate plays a part in what people are wanting to see on stage now.

"You've got all these weather fronts outside the industry, whether that's Black Lives Matter or Kill the Bill or climate change. There's been a consciousness shift," he said. "However catastrophic Covid-19 has been, it's allowed artists and citizens to really think about who we are, how we're connected to each other, and - specifically in terms of theatre - what work we want to make."

Indhu Rubasingham, the artistic director of the Kiln Theatre, agrees.

"I think we're in a real fulcrum moment," she said. "Parts of society want change, but then I think there's also fear of that change because it challenges traditional power bases. I'm intrigued to see which side of the fulcrum we're going to fall."

Read more on The Guardian.

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