I’ve been thinking a lot about the work at hand – perhaps because there’s much to be done here at the Hangar, but also in the context of meeting our Lab Company and beginning to guide their ensemble building. How to build ensemble translates into a much larger question of how to get a group of people to work together. Answer that and you’ve got a million dollar book deal and a permanent position lecturing at corporate retreats. And perhaps a life of creating inspiration.
Peter Flynn, Artistic Director of the Hangar, threw his pen on the table. “That’s the thing. Theatre works best when it is a service industry. And what are we working towards? That.”
I sat at that folding table in the lobby of a much-loved theatre, listing off in my head every artist and mentor and teacher and friend and lover that I cherish, realizing its because they’ve been able to define “the pen”. Because what is the pen? The pen is greater purpose. The pen is religion. The pen is the promise of love. The pen is my grandmother’s sage advice. The pen is relationships. The pen is anything worth working towards that is larger than yourself.
And that is a true lesson in theatre.
“Purpose is the bridge past ego.” A quote Daniel Beaty passed along to me. “Purpose is the bridge past ego.”
And a yoga quote: when you’re going into a twist and trying to align: “Lead with your heart and your head will follow.”
Life is mundane. Leadership lies in those able to throw the pen.