All the below are possibilities ONLY.
The 2018-2019 season is still in development.
Our 2018-2019 season begins (maybe – see above note) with the 2018 Grand Center Theatre Crawl (GCTC). For audiences, the GCTC is a fabulous opportunity to sample the range, breadth, and depth of what the St. Louis theatre community has to offer.
Black Mirror’s 2018 offering is a combination of spoken word performance and live musical accompaniment. For now, we’ll keep the piece and author secret. But know, it will be St. Louis’ first exposure to a writer, an artist, and a body of work which have stunned audiences in other countries, on other continents and along the coasts of the USA.
Next up in 2018 (perhaps) will be our late Summer production of Clifford Odets’ Waiting for Lefty. In this era of attacks on labor unions, lowering of minimum wages by state legislatures, it is time we, as a community, revisit the struggles our parents and grandparents shouldered to raise their standard of living and fight for a minimum wage in order to earn a piece of the American Dream. It is a powerful – and real enough – story based on the NY/NJ taxi strikes of the early 1930’s.
Odets is known for his clear, compelling language and tightly structured stories. Waiting for Lefty is one of his first and best-known plays often cited for its unique ”structure” and staging. It was performed back in the day throughout the U.S. in union halls and small theatres.
The season continues (possibly) with our winter-ish production of an Evening of Shorts. The program consists of from 4-6 pieces, some famous, some not so, some by famous playwrights, some not so, some involving dance and spoken word, some comic, some tragic …
Because no one piece is overly long, we guarantee there will be something for everyone in this very special program.
Some of the world’s finest dramatic literature is short and, hence, is seldom, if ever, staged. We intend to redress some of these oversights as well as to bring some pieces to the stage which have never been produced. We’d call them ‘world premieres’ but that, like ‘the critics are raving’ and other cliches, has such a pretentious ring to it!
Pieces by Nobel Laureates, revolutionaries, romantics and poets, unknowns, saints and sinners will be performed with taste, grace and style.
We will end our season (or not) in Spring 2019 with one of a several possibilities.
One candidate is the urgent, ardent, strident cry for social and economic justice first staged in the 1960’s, The Persecution and Assassination of Jean-Paul Marat as Performed by the Inmates of the Asylum of Charenton Under the Direction of the Marquis de Sade or Marat / Sade for short. It is every bit as timely now as it was then.
In Jean-Paul Marat’s words: ”Don’t be deceived when our Revolution has been finally stamped out they tell you things are better now. Even if there’s no poverty to be seen because the poverty’s been hidden. Even if you ever got more wages and could afford to buy more of these new and useless goods which industries foist on you and even if it seems to you that you never had so much, that is only the slogan of those who still have much more than you …”
Another possibility is Samuel Beckett’s famous full-length 1-act play, Endgame. It was originally written in French (entitled Fin de partie), translated by Beckett himself into English. It is commonly considered to be among Beckett’s most important works.
Endgame lies somewhere between Beckett’s semi-literal Waiting for Godot and his beautiful short pieces, sometimes termed ‘ghost plays’ which include Rockaby, Footfalls, Not I and others.
Yet another possibility is Patricia Burke Brogran’s fictional, yet real enough, story inspired by the Magdalene Laundries, titled Eclipsed which won Fringe First at Edinburgh Theatre Festival in 1992 and the Moss Hart award in 1994.
At a young age, Ms. Brogan became a novitiate in a convent in Ireland but soon had to leave after seeing the horrendous things taking place there.
Her play was not initially well received. In her words, ” … there was some backlash and I really suffered with that play. I had someone cut my picture out of the paper and draw horns and different symbols on it and send it to me. I got up one morning and this had been thrown in the door, which was very upsetting and hard to handle. People thought I was being anti-Church but I wasn’t. Everyone blamed the sisters, but the State did nothing to intervene.”
For each person who attends one of Black Mirror’s performances
a donation of $3.70 will be made to Operation Backpack, a program which helps to ensure
St. Louis area needy school children do not go hungry on weekends.