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Artistic Statement

September 24, 2014

After yet another summer filled with lots of theatrical adventures, I start the fall not only to begin my 2nd year as an in-school teaching artist, but also thinking about why I love theatre. What makes the theatre excite us as artists? What draws us into its seductive charm? What kind of theatre do we like to do to and why? Are we more of a Shakespearean artist or a musical theatre one? Or both? Or neither?

As theatre artists, especially emerging theatre artists, these are things we need to think about to take the plight of building our careers. The past 6 months (or so) in particular I’ve been trying to figure out exactly what that means for me as an artist. I’ve had a strong resume, cover letter, and bio for quite some time, but to figure out what kind of theatre work I want to search for, that was my challenge. So I wrote a new revised version of my artistic statement.

I first wrote an artistic statement when I was finishing grad school (which feels like so long now). That’s when this concept was first introduced to me. I think the one I wrote then was good for the first time out, but within the past year particularly I felt that it was more of a good starting point, but that it didn’t have everything that I’m interested in- just one thing. So I started my journey in thinking: what do I do, want to do, how I work, and why?

In time here and there I’d find one more thing to piece the artistic puzzle together. Example: I realized I’m interested in contemporary works as oppose to classical ones, because I’m interested in exploring what’s going on in our modern-day work in the art I create. That was an important piece of the puzzle. Then in time finding out all the separate pieces, I needed to find the connection. How do all these puzzle pieces fit together in one artist statement that says “This explains The Crazy Theatre Artist and her artistic work perfectly!”?

Then when I found the time to put all the puzzle pieces together (and being a Crazy Theatre Artist- that was a challenge in itself), I started making a list. Then I discovered more of the main connections in my artistic interests once I sat down and had it in writing in front of me. In a 7-hour journey of revising and re-revising, I ended up with a full one-page description of my interests, why, and how. It’s also filled with daily Crazy Theatre Artist language, words that I use everyday when talking about theatre, that way anyone reading it that knows me well, knows not only that I wrote it, but know this is exactly how I work. While those that don’t know me get to learn how I work and what I’m interested in.

Personally, I’m glad I took the time to write it. Asides the fact I’d need to submit for MFA applications when I decide to apply, but it also both connected all the pieces to my puzzle and made everything clear to me on a conscious level. As theatre artists, we all love theatre, but we all love theatre for different reasons. Making sure we know exactly why we do we what do is the perfect stepping stone to finding the artistic work that draws us in as artists so much. 🙂

sarah sig

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