Never tell them anything. They're looking for a reason to reject you.
By them, I mean the people who run the theaters. They're frightened. Frightened they'll piss someone off. For the reality is, they're losing funding. They're losing clout. They're losing audience. And across the nation, one by one, they're closing their doors.
Each one thinks, if I hunker down and stay quiet and not move a muscle, perhaps the angel of death will pass over and I'll live another day. Perhaps. In the meantime, old plays and old musicals get reworked, rehashed and rerun.
Go ten years into the future and you'll see that your theatre audience pretty much approximates the demographics of a typical New England Episcopal parish: a few aging homosexuals and some unreconstructed sixties generation leftovers. See them hobbling to their seats with their walkers and their canes and their oxygen tanks. No fucking way am I writing for that dreck.
I write for a generation yet to be born. I believe there'll come a day, after the technology has been smashed, when they'll rediscover theatre as entertainment and education. When that day comes, they'll look back on the 20th and 21st centuries as the Dark Ages when the inmates ran the asylum and there was crap all over the carpet.
When that day comes, they'll rip up the carpet and shovel the shit into a barrow. And half-buried somewhere in the mire, barely legible with a crumpled turndown letter stapled to it, they'll find a copy of MOHAMMED'S MOON.
And they'll say, one to another, "Yes. This might do."
My Personal Statement of my Role, Now and in the Future, as an Artist
Four years back, I wrote a play about a man from a stone age tribe in Eastern Peru. He was an artist. He did wall art in caves. His wife thought he was a magic man. Magic in a good way. Except the wall art never got them fed. In that way, art hasn't changed.
He got visitors, this artist did. An anthropologist to study him and put his name in a thesis. A priest to preach him the good news and save his soul. I made the priest a kind of wild man with a cowboy mouth. One day, the anthropologist asks the priest if he ever gets depressed.
"Depressed? I never get depressed. This to me is like...well, like being way back at the beginning. Back before Moses and Abraham. Back when, say, Cain was murdering Abel and all that good shit. I consider it a...a fucking privilege being here. Look around you. A whole new batch of souls sliding down the chute. Fresh out of the oven. Untouched, uncorrupted, just waiting for me to lay hands on. It's like...like a window into heaven, man. Makes you wanna cream in your jeans."
And that's how I see my role as an artist.
As a fucking privilege....