The archive and solo performance

My favorite professor and mentor has created a blog about solo performances in drama. It’s incredibly interesting, informative as well as introspective.

Blog as Solo Performance

The point is to share the stories conveyed by the solo performers. Aye, but there’s the rub. Solo performances are ephemeral; perhaps even more than the multi-act play. They live in the body of the performer during the moment of performance and then they are done, only occasionally revived or performed by others. Yes, there are some records of the performances, but it is mighty hard to gather that evidence all together in written or even video or audio form. Recently, I spent some time at the NYPL Performing Arts Library which has done an amazing job of amassing archival material for all kinds of live theater, dance and music productions which otherwise would be lost. While there, I learned that there were newspaper clippings reviewing or interviewing most of the solo performers I had seen and that there were also New York reviews of the productions. Although some of…

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