An analyst of economic relations compared the number of deaths from infections and the number of suicides caused by economic stagnation. What kind meaning does this comparison have? Now I come to think, how does culture function under these circumstances?
Culture is the very activity for human beings to live humanly. What makes the difference between humans and animals is whether or not they cherish values such as beauty, happiness and growth. Especially at times like these when people are separated and driven into loneliness, hatred and anxiety, art and culture are what we all need.
Social distance is the distance required in society. Under the situations of infection risks, we have to keep some distance from each other. In the same way as when infections are spread by people invading the distance, we would feel anxious and scared when “an individual” shell is invaded. However, it sometimes leads us to discover our new possibilities, grow up and find a new view of our lives. Let’s say we call the dangerous distance with the possibility of invasion human-like distance. It’s hard to display the numerical value of human-like distance. People with energies get together to produce extraordinary energies in creating theatrical works. Therefore, it is compared with social distance and makes people think intensely what human-like distance is at the same time.
“Let’s think about half-opened shells; human-like distance.” This is a key phrase for the BIRD Theatre Festival 13. We will use outdoor space effectively. Performances and workshops are two main pillars of the festival. The number of venues and programmes is less than usual. However, we will pursue “joy” and “thinking” to the greatest extent on the basis of “safe and security” under these circumstances. Now is the time to verify how irreplaceable internal activities and mutual involvements of human beings are. That’s what I hope for.
(BIRD Theatre Company TOTTORI Artistic Director NAKASHIMA Makoto)