This is a clip of Mark and Lorna, a couple who perform six nights a week at the Red Fox Lounge in Winter Park, FL, near Orlando. I happened to be staying at the Best Western where the Red Fox is located, and got to see them. They have been playing there for 18 years, married 37 years. They are purportedly the basis for the SNL skit “The Culps.” They are remarkable. Please visit them in real life.
I just stumbled onto this speech, and I think it’s worth reading. There’s a lot here. Take a breath, get a beverage and block out some time:
Here are two tidbits:
1. “We may be in the arts looking at the world—watching our audiences shrink, seeing subscribers decline, standing by as organizations teeter and fall—through the lens of scarcity, when the world—especially the young—are playing in a field of abundance.”
2. “Theatre practitioners how report growing audience resistance to encountering any idea not instantly recognizable as one’s own, an increasing polarization in our country, for instance, that led members of the audiences at last year’s Tony winning Alliance Theatre to exit en masse, mid-act, climbing over others, when a character said, “If I had time with George Bush, I’d tell him to share his toys and play nice with others.” For so many, the encounter with the other, with difference, with the new lies at the heart of our missions and purpose: what will it mean for us if we lose this appetite as a society and wish only to encounter the familiar, the known, the already embraced?”