I AM THEATRE: Don Shewey

I think a lot of people have this idea about critics that they’re school marms who want to sort of spank you and tell you what you did wrong. I just saw writing about theatre in a different way. As a kind of a dialogue with the artists and that’s really meaningful to me. There’s something really thrilling about understanding an artist’s work and being able to write about it intelligently. I think a pivotal moment for me as a critic and journalist was writing about The Wooster Group and writing about Liz LeCompte at a time when they were not world famous. They were an experimental company working in SoHo, out of a little place and their work was very controversial I heard from Liz LeCompte later, at one point, when I interviewed her, she said, “You know there’s just a few people who understand our work and your writing about it has really helped us And it really moved me that an artist that I respected so much she’s a human being and it really helps to have people write thoughtfully about her work And I realized that’s actually that was a role I could perform and I actually had some aptitude at doing. I am Don Shewey and I AM THEATRE.

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