Theatre has evolved much since the theatre of the Romans and other theatres of cruelties, but to Artaud, it's not evolution. Theatre has mutated into something that is worthy of disgust, or so he thinks. In fact, he thinks that we should throw this realistic performative theatre out the window and go back to our roots, that is primitive man. Artaud thinks that theatre these days, it's out of style because it's not effective enough. It's false. A lie. And that's why people don't go to theatre anymore. It doesn't appeal to the savage in us, "this elementary magical idea."
We should not be so passive, just as Brecht says. But we should allow ourselves to be hypnotized. Artaud adds to Brecht's innovation by essentially numbering the commandments to theatre. Thou shall not rely on the text. Thou shall not reason this. Thou shall not sit quietly. "I think both the theater and we ourselves have had enough of psychology...we are all mad, desperate, and sick."(77) Or maybe it's just Artaud.
2 years ago