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Sam Shepard – Stalking Himself

January 16th, 2007 No comments

Just watched the PBS Great Performances show on Sam Shepard.

I was pretty influenced by the fact that his early plays and early writing is so admittedly just stuff he put out there. Just had an impulse, notion, idea and dramatized it; shot it out, let it live. A lot of stream of consciousness. A lot of personal experience and personal history. Then, later, he went on to considering larger ideas, like family, leading to his “trilogy.”

This has forced me to re-consider my approach to playwrighting, as I have been more driven to write plays about issues that concern me and about the people those issues affect. However, none of them really has any anything to do with me. Nothing like it has happened to me, or likely will, at best it is the impersonal made personal.

Often I have thought about approaching personal experiences: family silences, what is unsaid, etc.; and more personal subjects, but have been hesitant to go through that door. I think I have some understanding now as to why. Not that it will be any easier at some later date, but assuredly, knowing myself and writing plays that bring myself forward will iron the will that has to write plays that are larger in scope.

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