Morris Park Players

Trevor the T-Rex and I went to a show put on by the Morris Park Players, which is a community theatre group. Other than the loose connection to origami provided by Trevor, there is one reason I think that this presentation of Cinderella is related to paper folding. Specifically, it is democratic art. I ranted about it a bit in a previous post and was hoping to add some new thoughts here.

I am falling in love with the idea of local art and local production. As an example, the MPP is a community group that exists by sheer force of will. They are not the local chapter or franchise, they are the whole of the organization, no "orders from the top". In fact, the "top" seems to have been conscripted to fill in minor (but essential) parts.

There are many ways to tell a story, and Cinderella is a perfect example. There are books, international movies, plays, and such. What excites me is a matter of scale. These some 50 people were pulled right out of the community and their work has come full circle to be enjoyed by the same community. It is custom, tailored, tuned. It is an expression that satisfies the artists and the observers in a way that Avatar 3D never will. When I saw the show one part of me saw the Disneyfication of the story how a similar play could be done in any American town, but I also saw actors and actresses I recognized. People I went to school with and their families were there, which came as a complete surprise. This wasn't just any play in any town, this was a production specially selected by my community for my community. I was sincerely told why I needed to be a part of future productions (not that acting is my cup of tea) by the father of a friend.

I think origami is typically like this. Sure, there are the big shots who fly around the world and take have speaking engagements and special commissions. But most folders are just people in the community who are trying to express themselves artistically. They are from the community, and they are absorbed back into the community.

I just feel so warm and fuzzy inside when I see that people are able to build up their own art. They cannot just sit back and hope that Hollywood will finally make a good movie. Instead they make a great play and share it with their neighbors.

There will always be art, so long as humans are human, but democratic art requires us as individuals to act.

[The T-Rex was designed by John Montroll]

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