Being In The Moment
It’s hard to stay present. I often consider what just happened or wonder what’s coming next. Even while watching a play. Sometimes it seems a wandering mind is almost encouraged in the theater. We can see the crew moving set pieces in the scene change; the lights are clearly off for our sake! We need that moment to exhale, ponder, recall that last haunting image. And intermission? It’s an assembly of the minds; debating why the protagonist did that thing or what you would have done if you were her. By the time you return to your seat, you’ve already decided where you stand. You are now ready for another wave of story. But when each play lasts only 60 seconds, there are no scene breaks, no intermissions: there is no time to process. As soon as you catch your breath, you are experiencing a new moment, a brand new play.
I think Buddha would have liked the One-Minute Play Festival. He and Alan Watts. In his book The Wisdom of Insecurity, Watts emphasizes the crucialness of embracing the present and the futility of considering the past or future. His words seem quite appropriate when considering a series of minute-long plays. “The experience you have just had has vanished irretrievably, and all that remains of it is a sort of wake or track in the present, which we call memory. While you can make a guess as to what experience is coming next, in actual fact you do not know. Anything might happen.”
The First Boston One-Minute Play Festival will take place Jan 7-9, 2012 in partnership with Boston Playwrights’ Theatre. 70 new plays by 35+ Boston and New England Playwrights. For tickets and info, click here.