Consider yourself proven wrong

13 April 2017

Eve Allin is tired of being edited out of her own history


No, I’m not going to try something old. Guess what, I’ve seen it done. Like, so many times. And yeah, I will use ummm, and like, and yeah, and not write like you because I don’t want to see your red line on my page. I’m tired of editing my voice because yours shouts louder, and has always been heard. Did you ever think that maybe some of us felt like we were being crushed by the Pinters, the Shakespeares, the Shaffers? I don’t really want to adhere to a three-part structure. I think it’s kinda… patriarchal, honestly. The three parts constrict us, make us feel like the art we want to make is being policed. Sorry if that makes you a little uncomfortable sometimes. And actually, I don’t really care if you like it or not anymore, because my art isn’t for you, it isn’t about you, it has never been there to please you.

I don’t want to see more Shakespeare here. I think Shakespeare is great, and legitimate, and done wonderfully well in so many places, but if students aren’t making it, then maybe there’s a reason for that. We want to make new work that talks about how we feel now, about what we want, about what we’re scared of, about our futures. The best shows that are being made by young people coming to this festival is new writing, is devised, is theatrically investigatory. No Human is Illegal was so important for showcasing this. The youngest people here are making some of the most powerful and politically active work in student theatre right now. That’s fucking awesome.

And actually, this isn’t an attack on Shakespeare because I think King Lear is one of the best plays ever written. I really believe that the shows that come here, for the most part, investigate form and are active in very exciting ways. And I don’t think Shakespeare is exempt from what that can be. But how do you expect to gain anything from this burst of new work if you come in expecting to see the work you’ve seen your whole life? Is that what this is really about? Really? The idea of a quota here jars with me. What if the selectors see 12 clever, amazing, well-structured devised shows over the year and then had to pick less than half of them? It’s not about an even spread of the theatre that you want to see – it’s about the best theatre that we make. And we make some really good shit.


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Photo credit: Giulia Delprato