Wednesday's lecture was about defining theatre vs. performance. It was the sort of thing that seems obvious, but we rarely put into words. The gist is, not all performance is theatre, because life is all about performance.
I know! Makes sense, right? When I get up in the morning and get dressed, I'm performing a ritual, a restored behaviour, that we all do every day. The same goes for brushing my teeth, fixing my hair, and eating my breakfast. Routine, yes-- but still a ritual, still a performance.
And of course the performance is bigger than that, because these rituals I perform in my home have effects once I leave. What do the clothes I choose say about me? (In my case, they say, "This was the t-shirt at the front of my closet this morning".) What kind of performance am I making when I choose fresh breath and tidy hair over the less-pleasant alternatives?
But it goes further than that, because these performances not only affect the performer, but also the audience. What does it do to you when someone near you is wearing a cheery colour and a bright smile because she had breakfast and is in a good mood? What about the opposite? Or how about the range of reactions when two people are wearing the same thing, from, "Hey, cool," to "How dare you?" Our performances all bump into each other, mixing and mingling at the edges, and bounce back to affect the respective performers in a new way. No wonder we all have sensory overload.
Do you ever think of life as a performance? What do you want your performance to say about you?