Saturday, April 01, 2006

Bill Corbett's Heckler

This play (90 minutes) is running at the Eye of the Storm Theater, Minneapolis Theater Garage (612-728-5859) Feb. 2- Mar. 4, 2001. The author is Bill Corbett and the one performer is Brian Baumgartner. The director is Casey Stangl. As with a log of soliloquy plays, this one takes on the social and wealth redistribution issues—in this case, right-wing political correctness from the point of view of a “liberal” upper midwestern demonstrator. The rallies are a composite of several, the most important being the GATT trade talks in Seattle in 1999. (Clinton, remember, was a strong “republican” supporter of free trade with both NAFTA and GATT). The political heckler chronicles his travels and expressions. Eschewing a “real job,” or any sense of professionalism based on the goals defined by others, he declares his job to be “knowing,” which is not the same as knowledge. Later he notes that political rallies and media cameos provide a “lens” for any individual to fight the system and make a name for himself. Well, you could say the same thing about the way I handle self-publishing and the Internet. Well, he disregards the advice of Minneapolis skyway standup (and very politically incorrect) comic John McDonough to “stay out of jail” and gets dragged by those pigs (the police) into something like a Hanoi Hilton while his pooch gets a leg amputated when crushed in the crowd. I’ll stick to my writing rather than be a street activist, but writers can wind up in jail, too. Just look at COPA.

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