MORE ON MORIARTY

Well, hmm. Lawson Taitte’s story dated at 7:28 a.m. sort of makes the rest of us who attended the “press conference” for the big announcement look kind of belated and dumb. Really not a good start, DTC. Board decision?

But let’s pretend. Kevin Moriarty appeared for the “press conference” in the standard centaur outfit – a jacket and tie over jeans and sneakers. As costuming, this has a clear message: he’s presentable but rooted in the people, Shakespeare but also contemporary, etc. He talked with passion about the place of theater as “vital for the survival of the democracy we all cherish.” As a whole, his vision appears so inclusive and democratic that it’s hard to see how he can do everything he envisions in less than 10 seasons.

For example, he wants the programming of the Dallas Theater Center to “reflect the experience of every member of our community.” Well, not literally, but you know what he means – outreach to African-American and Hispanic audiences. At the same time, he wants to continue to produce the classics – the writers “who have touched something deep within human experience” and still have much to say to us. But there will also be new works by living writers, including world premieres that “contribute the voice of Dallas to an ongoing dialogue” nationally. And family musicals. I think he touched every base.

Maybe the most interesting thing, though, is that when he starts in September, he won’t be actively engaged in directing or producing. He’ll be “engaging with local theater and other arts organizations.” That’s very promising, I think. He should get to know every theater group in town and go to all the plays next year – see the actors, meet the directors and designers, and really get a feel for what’s vital here. As for his artistic effect on the DTC, that still won’t be visible until September of 2008.

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