I recently found out (through a barrage of text messages and Facebook posts) that my halloween costume last year is currently being listed as one of Mashable's "15 Emoji Costumes to Express Yourself This Halloween." Obviously, when an honor like this is bestowed, it's only appropriate to share the full ouvre of the costume, and so without further ado, Srda takes on Emoji Girl - Halloween 2013.
An introduction to my thesis that I'm working on revising and hopefully (maybe/one day) getting published, Impossible Heroes: The Disappearing Voice of the Young American Theatre Director. Does this interest you or make any sense to you?
by Srda Vasiljevic (Director)
Buried in a heated dialogue about the changing face of Islamic identity, playwright Ayad Akhtar subtly weaves a glaring artistic manifesto into his 2013 Pulitzer Prize winning drama, Disgraced.
The title... –Well, first let me say—it's been generations and generations of consumerism and cynicism—...And an art market that just feeds the frenzy. But something's shifting. There's a movement of young artists who are not buying into it anymore. They're asking the question—how to make art sacred again. It's an impossibly heroic task they've set for themselves. Which is why I'm calling it...Impossible Heroes. (Akhtar 74)
The main chorus of the song drives the point home, "One day, baby, we'll be old and think of all the stories that we could've told." And so my question goes out to you theater-makers, artists, professional make-believers: Where are the theatre-artists that are representing what it means to be young in 2014? Are they being represented? Do they need to be represented? Is there a market for so-called "millennial artists"? And one day, baby, will we be old, and think of all the stories that we could've told?
I'm a proud, card-carrying member of the millennial generation. Just like all the rest of the milennial generation, we take all the shit that is hurled at us by sociologists and New York Times Op-Ed'ers with stride, and keep trucking forward in order to exceed society's low-expectations. I mean, our generation is unlike any that has come before us, and according to recent reports, there are more of us than any one else on earth today. So with these things, you'd imagine that the world would come knocking on our door, asking us our thoughts, and how to connect with the other billions of young people in our generation, and that almost seems to be the case...in every industry other than theater.
I mean just this week SNL hired 20 year old Pete Davidson as it's newest Featured Player, and we have our Lena Dunhams and Lordes and Mark Zuckerbergs, artists and creators who made incredible contributions to the world around them in their twenties (or younger)...but where are those artists on the theatrical creative teams? Where are the writers, composers, directors, playwrights, designers who are commandeering a millennial world for audiences?
If you know of artists who are making big waves in their twenties, I want to know about them. Are they out there, and if not, why not? How do we make sure that an under-represented, yet huge faction of society is represented and presented on stage? How can we make the voice of our generation on that is heard and not stiffled?
These are questions that keep me up at night, and I want to know your thoughts. Let me know of the millennial artists that are getting your juices flowing. I want to know more about who's out there, and who is willing to step in to be a voice of our generation in the American theatre? The winds are a-blowin' and there's a revolution starting, but the question is, who are our leaders going to be?
In stressing over what would be the best thing to write for my first Crazytown blog, I thought an introduction to myself would be a nice foray into the conversation. Think of this like that awkward time of freshman year where you're forced to share an interesting fact about yourself during Orientation, except this time, we're much older and more mature and settled in with our lives (HA).
ANYWAY, let's bring things back to 2006 and do one of those 20 things you may not know about me posts from goold ol' pre-newsfeed Facebook.
My name is pronounced Ser-ja Vah-sil-ih-vich (wtf, right?).
I'm a Bosnian-Iowan.
I can make really loud clicking noises with my tongue.
I once held Lady GaGa in my arms for like 4 minutes.
I have 3 parody twitter accounts that I can't release the names of for fear of being sued.
I work on and off Broadway as a Director/Assistant Director/Associate Director.
I'm currently working as the Assistant to the Lead Producer of IT'S ONLY A PLAY at the Schoenfield and the Assistant Director of WHILE I YET LIVE at Primary Stages.
In the last show I directed, a guy was castrated and turned into lion-woman.
Jay Leno told me that I had a bright future.
My Uber driver also told me that I had a bright future.
I have a legitimate fear of ranch dressing.
I can't move my legs and arms at the same time when doing choreographed dance.
As a director, I'm really interested in exploring what it means to be a young person living in the new century -- MILLENNIAL THEATRE.
In High School, I got back at a teacher by doing a 20 minute visual presentatin on erotic poetry.
I went to Emerson College in Boston.
I just moved to Hell's Kitchen, and I really want a wingback chair.
I'm a member of the Lincoln Center Director's Lab.
The dark moon emoji is my spirit animal.
I really like spaghetti with canned tuna...judge me.
I'm so excited to be writing for Crazytown!
So there's a snippet of WHAT IS A SRDA? Over the coming weeks, I'm sure you'll learn more about what describes a Srda, but until then, over and out.
P.S. Here's a photo of me in a Teletubby costume if that tells you any more about me.