A Theater without Theater

Architectural Representations
Feifei Feng

The theatre has always been described as reflecting social mechanisms and ideology, and urban space is often set out as a theatrical show. As indicated in Ledoux’s engraving, the auditorium is reflected in a giant pupil, indicating the reversible relationship between the actor and the spectator. Ledoux compared the ample dimensions of the stage to the space outside, and ultimately to the city. Both the theatre and public space are venues for assemblage and exchange of knowledge and ideas.

The engagement can also be better achieved by reducing the distance between the actor and the audience, as suggested by the futurists, who aimed to subvert traditional bourgeois drama. They proposed to turn the traditional theater inside out by extending the stage and allowing the audience to interact with the actor, which allows for more improvisations and provocations (Kirby and Kirby 43). The avant-garde theater movement also proposed to abolish the stage or separation it implies. They welcomed a unique site without borders or barriers. Spectators were anticipated to join the kind of collective creation.

As the futurists claimed that reality vibrates around us, hitting us with bursts of fragments with events among them, embedded one with the other, confused, entangled, and chaotic.

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