Anyone who has ever produced and mounted their own work will know how daunting it is. Apart from the financial and legal responsibilities, often you are exposed to the harshest of critical audiences made up of your own peers in the performing arts industry. Hats off to Daisy Spencer and Rory Booth for living dangerously and putting themselves out there in their own brand new mini-musical called The PARC (an acronym for the Performing Arts Rehabilitation Centre). What a clever idea!
In this work, which still needs trimming, tighter direction, and careful development two of Durban’s finest take to the stage to deal with a plethora of industry issues. I always bemoan the fact that in Durban, and possibly SA, room for development and failure is often unavailable in our industry structures. In other parts of the world, new works are tested, in festivals, in the provincial theatres, on Off-off Broadway before they get into the main stream. In this way they are giving many re-writes (Amadeus, I believe had more than thirty prior to making it to the West-end) and re-runs allowing the writers, directors, and performers a chance to hone and refine the work before the ‘big’ time. In Durban we, more often than not, go from nothing to the mainstream. If it does not work many a promising work just dies never to be seen again!
That’s not to say that The PARC does not work. I many ways it does, and has great potential. My hope is that our industry and its audience will allow it space to develop and re-appear in many guises in the future until it grows into the fabulous work that it will one day deserve to be! Bravo Daisy & Rory!
And by the way, see it people! Give them all the support that they deserve.