It seems my last post generated a bit of buzz, thus a quick follow up.
I don't really want to be a "person who happens to make theatre". I think that is asking us to hide behind some veneer of "normalcy" and apologize for being Different which I, for one, am GLAD we are. Why don't we try being proud of our club and enticing the world rather than worrying about alienating it? That's how they got me ... after all, confidence is sexy.
I don't disagree with you here. I think my point is twofold:
1. We should be theatre artists. No one calls guitarists "a music person". They call him or her a "musician". A painter is a visual artist, not a "paint person." I'm certainly not advocating we try to be normal, either. Far from it. I'm saying we should stop selling ourselves like idiots. We don't all do it, but I think we should be vigilant about those moments in life when we use our identity, joking or not, as an excuse or apology for our behavior. I say own it. If you're an airhead, it's not because you're a "theatre person". It's because you're an airhead. Same with me. If my blog posts have typos and poor grammar, it's not because I'm a "theatre person". It's because I'm lazy and prone to rushing when behind schedule.
2. When I refer to "people who happen to make theatre", I'm really saying that we should always be people first and all other things secondary. I'm not saying we hide our identities, I just feel that often times we tend to forget what it is to live life and be human beings with each other. It's not exclusive to theatre. People of all professions do this. You find people who forget how to be human in all walks of life. Politics, teaching, service, law... Any hard working, life consuming profession has the potential to consume ourselves. I just think it's important to let ourselves just be people every once and a while. It's hard not being able to take off one's director hat when sitting in the audience, for example. I long to just enjoy a play without critiquing it. But oh well, such is life and quite frankly, that obsession probably helps me make better art so long as I'm self aware.
There are some interesting points in here. I also agree that I'd like to see more of a communal shift to thinking of theater as an inclusive art for more people.
But I also agree that I like to identify myself, as an actor, and as a theater artist, for several reasons. To me theater artist as a title feels as legitimate a title as I feel my work is.
I totally agree! Read above.
In conclusion, I have my answer to the question originally posed. We are theatre artists. And I for one will make a special effort to remove the phrase "Theatre People" from my lexicon. I would encourage you all to ask yourself what you think, and act accordingly.
And for the love of god, if you agree with me, please just don't be a jerk about it...::coughanonymouscough::
P.S. Confidence IS sexy.