Today we wanted to discuss with you an incredible theatre happening that occurred a couple of weeks ago:
It is the conflict between The Theatre, as represented by Hamilton, and the Government-to-be, as represented by Vice-President Elect Mike Pence.
As you all know, Vice President-Elect Pence went to a performance of Hamilton where he was specifically addressed by the cast at the end of the performance (their spokesperson being Brandon Dixon).
Mr. Dixon made a plea to Vice President-Elect Pence–as a representative of our new government starting 20th of January. The cast requested that Vice President-Elect Pence look out for their interests, aka those of the common people. While Mr. Pence was walking out of the theatre at the time of the speech, he stopped and listened to what Mr. Harris had to say.
To us, it is a fascinating happening. It is The Theatre showing its influence on our world. Not only in the message that the play itself gives the audience, but in this historic case, the actors themselves sent out a message that was viewed—thanks to social media—all around the world. Theatres have often had an effect on society in the past, starting with William Shakespeare himself.
Personally, we experienced this in mid-1950s with McCarthyism. At a time when everyone was afraid of being locked up for being a Communist, Arthur Miller wrote The Crucible, which was set during the Salem Witch Trials but in fact, was the very replica of what was happening in America at that time. The play was so sensational that Miller was interrogated by the US House of Representatives Committee on Un-American Activities!
President-Elect Trump’s comments aside, we do hope that Vice President-Elect Pence will take these words to heart. Not as an attack, but as a plea from those who have real concerns for the ideals and path that the new administration seems to be leading us down in order to “make America great again.” We have always looked to the theatre to lead in voicing current political concerns and we are very proud of the cast of Hamilton for continuing this tradition!
Philip & Marilyn Langner