"My own single favourite artistic moment of the year came courtesy of a Brooklyn-born rapper playing an intensely demanding role on the London stage with a self-assurance that was disarming: Dante Terrell Smith - aka Mos Def - ably aided by Jeffrey Wright, was startlingly charismatic in Suzan Lori-Parks's Topdog/Underdog at the Royal Court."
"To overhear two young members of the audience wanting to check out a hiphop album as a result of a trip to the theatre was to realise that the ebbs and flows of cultural conjunction are moving in gloriously unpredictable ways. Long may it continue."(FT. com | Arts & Weekend / Art, music & theatre | The year that culture became popular By Peter Aspden Published: December 29 2003 )
"At the end of 2003, English Canadian theatre may be competing on the world stage and all the rage in Germany, but for a sizable demographic on the home front, its very existence is in doubt. No art form can afford to ignore new audiences, and as its stalwarts get considerably older and remain steadfastly middle-class, -- the challenge for Canadian theatre goes beyond creating new works or reinterpreting classics to inviting (seducing, bullying even) new audiences."(The Globe and Mail | Entertainment | A season saved by acting By KAMAL AL-SOLAYLEE THEATRE CRITIC Saturday, December 27, 2003)
(both via Best Of 2003 | Arts Journal IssueTracks)
:: note :: . . . two widely divergent opinions from different nations . . . popularity is overrated and often used as a simple scale for immediate success . . . quality work will etch its way into the collective memory of history whether popular or not . . . influencing the committed few deeply . . . i react, even strongly, when something touches the surface . . . that reaction is in the realm of the popular . . . that tactile sense does stimulate and create a notion of 'aliveness' . . but when emotion and argument are harnessed into a wish to see more clearly into oneself - then something in the mind burns (paraphrasing Brook) . . . i long to burn . . .