Creative Control

Miscellaneous Mental Musings of an Emerging Artist

Imagery.

syria_rubble

This morning there are dozens upon dozens of messages of farewell issuing forth from the devastated Syrian city of Aleppo; men and women who want somebody to know that they once existed, that they once mattered, that they and their families were not simply hatch-marks in a horrific number we won’t learn for years. The forces of President Bashar al-Assad pronounce that they are about to “recapture the city” as if what remains there–the bombed-out husks of buildings, the mangled and starved corpses of children–could still be referred to as a city.

I wrote and performed this piece in the show this past October. I couldn’t face the horror of Aleppo head-on and so I abstracted it into something I could still wield without bursting into sobs. I don’t know how many people understood what I was talking about. Plenty of people laughed throughout the performance, which I can’t altogether fault them for–the staging and structure were, by my own design, oddball.

==
imagery.
(c) 2016 Bilal Dardai

(Everything more or less happens as written. Lights start at wash but will change throughout. There is a table at center stage. BILAL, JOHN, and MARGARET start in chairs on the lip next to their props.)

BD: Stage direction. John places two eggs on a table.

(JP places two eggs on the table. Lights change.)

JP: One of these eggs is innocent, but I couldn’t tell you which one. Stage direction. Margaret places a stepladder behind the block.

(JP returns to his seat. MM places the yellow ladder behind the block, steps facing the audience. Lights change.)

MM: One of these steps is optional but I shouldn’t tell you which one. Stage direction. Bilal places a cinder block atop the ladder and holds it there.

(MM returns to her seat. BD places a cinder block atop the ladder and holds it there, precariously dangling over the incline. Lights change.)

BD: This block was removed from a damaged psyche, but I wouldn’t tell you which one. Stage direction. John gives Bilal a stage direction.

JP: Stage direction. Bilal ignores Margaret’s stage direction.

MM: Stage direction. Bilal lets go of the cinder block.

(Pause. The lights begin cycling slowly through the light looks.)

BD: Stage direction. John stands next to the stepladder and peels the skin off of an onion.

(JP stands next to the stepladder with an onion and peels the skin off of it.)

BD: Stage direction. Margaret stands next to the stepladder and peels the skin off of an orange.

(MM stands next to the stepladder with an orange and peels the skin off of it.)

MM: Stage direction.

JP: Bilal remains on the stepladder and peels the skin off the play’s intention.

(Pause.)

BD: Inside this image there’s a war and inside this war there’s a city and inside this city there’s a building and inside this building there’s a child and inside this child there’s a blind spot I cannot ever unsee. There’s a silence I can’t unhear. There’s a numbness I can’t unfeel.

JP: An opinion you can’t unhave.

MM: A fact you can’t unbelieve.

BD: Stage direction.

MM: John picks up one of the eggs.

BD: Stage direction.

JP: Margaret picks up one of the eggs.

BD: Stage direction.

MM: Bilal lets go of the–

BD: –no I don’t.

(Pause.)

JP: Stage direction.

MM: Bilal gently carries the cinder block down the ladder. Stage direction.

JP: Bilal sits on the table. Stage direction.

MM: Bilal cradles the cinder block in his arms. Stage direction.

JP: Bilal rocks the cinder block to sleep, humming softly.

MM: Stage direction.

JP: John exits. Stage direction.

MM: Margaret exits.

(Lights fade out.)

CURTAIN

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This entry was posted on December 13, 2016 by in Neo-Futurists, Plays, Politics, Society, Theatre.
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