Sunday, 23 February 2014

Rubbish theatre

Chad tells us of an exciting development in rubbish theatre.

A new generation of Derbyshire residents are being taught the importance of reducing, reusing and recycling rubbish with the help of a theatre production.

Derbyshire County Council has commissioned the Gibber Theatre Company to bring The Waste Watchers to Derbyshire secondary schools.

Year 7 or 8 pupils in 35 secondary schools will see an exciting 50-minute interactive performance which uses humour, music, multimedia and popular culture to capture the importance of key environmental themes such as food waste and the benefits of putting unwanted items to good use.

It all sounds dreadfully passive to this crusty old cynic - passive for the kids that is. It serves as a reminder that words don't really measure up when it comes to instilling a political message - which must be instilled because that's the only way to get those boxes ticked.

Not that I have any strong objections to reducing waste and even recycling where it is worthwhile, but this kind of thing has the unmistakable whiff of sanctimony. An invitation to join a self-righteous crusade rather than anything resembling objective appraisal. 

It's a covert nudge for kids to harangue their parents too I suppose - which many undoubtedly will. Trainee prigs for a brave new world.

I wonder if environmental themes such as flooding and land drainage will attract a topical mention? I hope not. Somehow I'm pretty sure what that message would be.


Anonymous said...

Well, I fit's rubbish they want they could have asked for one of my theatrical productions. Only problem is, nobody wanted to recycle them!

Sam Vega said...

I think this is due to a "crisis of overproduction" in arts education. Too many graduates from performing arts or communications courses. And of course they will chase the easy money, which is recycling, climate change, and that old favourite: "equalityandiversity".

A K Haart said...

David - but were they modern with a sanctimonious message?

Sam - it isn't only the arts, there are too many scientists too. That's probably why so much science is also garbage.

Weekend Yachtsman said...

Shades of MaryLou Ogreburg and the Peoples' Bread and Marmite Street Theatre!

Only I get MaryLou was a damn sight funnier.

Demetrius said...

Long ago the Army used to put on lurid information films for recruits about the dangers of contracting certain diseases. But the tuppeny uprights on Waterloo Bridge still good business when the trains rolled in from Aldershot.

A K Haart said...

WY - I had to Google MaryLou. Why does the Peoples' Bread and Marmite Street Theatre hit the mark so accurately compared to modern satire?

Demetrius - apparently Boswell went in for something similar while in London and he had had personal knowledge of the risks. Made no difference though.

Weekend Yachtsman said...

Indeed. Reading a few of Google's links makes me think that Peter Simple was almost terrifyingly prophetic.

At the time it seemed beyond the furthest bounds of satire, but yet, and yet...