Diane Paulus: Theater Should Be More Like a Rock Concert

We posted about Diane Paulus (The Donkey Show, Pippin, Sleep No More) when she appeared at TEDxBroadway this year. In this profile of Paulus by Alexandra Wolfe in The Wall Street Journal, Paulus talks about the future of theater and explains why she thinks it’s heading toward even more boundary-blurring experiences.

Paulus also knows a thing or two about audience engagement — at The Donkey Show at A.R.T. audience members could come back with a friend for free — and she shares some insight on the topic that she’s picked up since her days running an experimental acting company in Wisconsin with her husband Randy Weiner.

You should read the entire article, but here are just a few of her interesting quotes:

“Everything I’ve done as a director is busting open what I call theater. Theater can be a nightclub or theater can be 400 people on Broadway singing with their own protest posters.”

“The idea that to be popular is to dumb down [is one that] I completely reject. The audience is smart and witty and wants to be challenged.”

“The director’s job is constantly to be in the audience … You have to wash your eyes and see without desire. When you work as a director, you have this desire to fix everything, but when you’re really looking, you see without desire, like a Buddhist thing.”


Selling Out With Randy Weiner

Diane Paulus Brings Important Message to TEDxBroadway

Diane Paulus at TEDxBroadway 2014: From “The Donkey Show” to Tony-Winnin’ “Pippin”


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