From the articles I follow on Google Reader I tend to always read Lyn Gardner's Theatre Tips which is not soley focussed on current productions and events but gives as the title suggests, tips on interesting items forthcoming. This week she mentioned Improbable: Devoted & Disgruntled - here's her mention:
'There's still time to secure tickets for Devoted and Disgruntled, which tkaes place over the last weekend of the month in London. It is a brilliant way to get connected and find out what people are thinking and talking about.'
I clicked through on the provided link (which by the way is also provided to you by clicking on the title of this post) and found an event that has what I would consider potential.
From what I can see, this is the 5th year of the event (there's also one in New York which seems to have recently happened). Something that's been running that long is bound to be interesting - right? I hope so. What I'm sceptical about is how it's managed. It's all fine to voice your opinion but coming to a consensus (if indeed that's where this is going) about a certain topic is bound to be frought with difficulties and bruised egos. And to be honest, I've come across quite a few egos in theatre but I guess that can be said about any profession - but as the word 'theatre' implies, it can get a bit - theatrical. However this event is also about connecting with people with the passion and working on individual projects:
'Devoted and Disgruntled 5
What are we going to do about theatre?
Five years ago I sent out the first invitation to "Devoted & Disgruntled". I'd become aware that, passionate as I was about theatre, I found myself frustrated at how we make it, how we communicate with each other and how little the existing structures supported us to feel part of a genine community. Since that first inviation to others who were devoted and disguntled, this has become an extraordinary annual event...
On past experiences of D&D, the more diverse our group, the more creative and exciting the work has been. All sectors and genres: Fringe, West End, Off West End, London based, regional etc etc are invited. If you've never been to D&D we need your voice, if you've been to every D&D we need your voice. Whatever your connection to theatre; on stage, back stage, off stage, in the audience, you are invited.
In it's fifth year we still don't know where D&D is headed - and I think this uncertainty is exciting and i am passionate about opening the space again. I'm excited by the opportunity D&D5 gives me and you to reconnect with UK theatre and the wider arts community. To continue building on the work we have begun and generate new initiatives. And to reconnect without cynicism and lethargy but rather with renewed energy. - Phelim McDermott - co-Artistic Director, Improbable'
Sounds good. Pushing my scepticism aside, I do have high hopes for this. One aspect that I'm really interested in is the bringing together of theatre practitioners and audience members. There's potential from some real eye opening discussions and exchanges. I often feel that for some in the 'biz', the audience rarely figures in the final equation. It will be interesting to see how it all pans out.
If I can get my mobile tweeting skills up to par I'll be tweeting from the event. Even if it's not a blow by blow update it will at least be highlights and I'll post a full overview here the following week.
Improbable: Devoted & Disgruntled
30 January 2010 at 10am - 1 February, 2010 at 2pm
Old Ford Road
Bethnal Green, London