Little Pretty and the Exceptional. What’s new here?
Last weekend, I attended the Postmarginal symposium curated by Natalie Alvarez and Ric Knowles at Modern Times Theatre Company. For just over two days artists, culture workers, reviewers and academics gathered to talk about how we might move beyond what we might call the “comfortable normal” of staging cultural difference in Canada: telling stories “about” difference without necessarily practicing an ethics of difference, of cross- or intercultural encounter, in fulsome ways in rehearsal or in performance.
The symposium began from the rich premise – in the words of the always-formidable Donna-Michelle St. Bernard – that diversity is A Good Thing, so let’s move on already!
That is, let’s stop showcasing diversity as though its value needs constant proving, and start living diversity as a given cultural practice, at our theatres as in our communities.