Theater matters because democracy matters.
Theater is the essential art form of democracy,
and we know this because they were born in the same city.
In the late 6th century BC,
the idea of Western democracy was born.
It was, of course,
a very partial and flawed democracy,
but the idea that power should stem from the consent of the governed,
that power should flow from below to above,
not the other way around,
was born in that decade.
And in that same decade, somebody -- legend has it, somebody named Thespis --
invented the idea of dialogue.
What does that mean, to invent dialogue?
Well, we know that the Festival of Dionysus gathered
the entire citizenry of Athens
on the side of the Acropolis,
and they would listen to music, they would watch dancing,
and they would have stories told as part of the Festival of Dionysus.
And storytelling is much like what’s happening right now:
I’m standing up here,
the unitary authority,
and I am talking to you.
And you are sitting back, and you are receiving what I have to say.
And you may disagree with it, you may think I’m an insufferable fool,
you may be bored to death,