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" My naivety is to assume people will think there's compassion and solidarity in wanting to play someone even though we are not them. "
" Often, particularly towards the end of the process, I think of myself less as a theatre director and more as someone who just directs the traffic. My job is to move the ideas and bits of the show into the places where they work best. Sometimes my job is also to say, 'No.' "
" People think that it is negative, but in fact, chaos can be very fertile. "
" I wouldn't be happy to be a specialist. There are some very interesting artists in history who refused to be nailed down into a category, like Da Vinci or Jean Cocteau. You could say Cocteau was a great poet but also a film-maker, interested in theatre, sculpture, and could never identify with any of these forms exclusively. "
" Sylvie Guillem is the best dancer in the world. "
" When we were working on 'River Ota' in the '90s, I learnt to read Japanese, which was how I discovered that it incorporates elements of Chinese calligraphy. "
" I like doing very small, intimate things in the morning and then, in the afternoon, to be working on something in a big stadium. "
" With the social media phenomenon, where people's opinions inform so much of what we do with our lives, where the number of 'likes' decides what we should program, I cringe. "
" In Las Vegas, you confront yourself with your darkest desires, because they're all possible there. "
" It's obvious that any new show comes with its share of blunders, misfires, and bad choices. "
" Why is it that I can remember so easily the lyrics to the opening theme song of 'Gilligan's Island?' Why do I remember these trivial things, and I can't remember the names of important collaborators? "
" If Darwin's theories are true, then we have within us the physical memory of when we were fish or apes. "
" Theatre's still expensive compared to downloading on Netflix; that has to be addressed. It doesn't mean it has to be over-subsidised by the state, but it's something we're trying to figure out. "
" Chaos is a good thing. "
A Good Thing
" Theatre comes alive when someone cross-dresses onstage. "
" I never questioned if I was effeminate or not. That didn't matter in the theatre. "
" I need to have many things cooking at the same time. "
" I've always been a little scared of technology, which is why I explore it. "
" Opera needs a major makeover; the large opera houses are too in thrall to their conservative patrons. "
" I find it very strange when people say that they are trying to solve 'Uncle Vanya' or find a solution for 'Henry V.' Plays aren't puzzles. They are about playing. But so much theatre has become about performing and acting rather than playing, which is a great pity because audiences are captivated by watching people play. "
" When I directed the 'Ring' cycle at the Metropolitan Opera in New York recently, there were people texting all through the show. But theatre isn't a communication device: it's a communion. "
" I had been warned by other directors that opera is hell. The singers don't want to do what you want. "
" Every time we make a new invention, we think we're going to save the world, but eventually, we understand that the real virtues of that new invention have mostly to do with commerce. Then we feel a huge emptiness, and we want to fill it with beauty. "
" Of course theater will always be associated intimately to literature, but the themes or whatever have to penetrate you by the senses. Theater is a sensuous experience, and that's its main difference from film or any other dramatic art. "
" I've always had a passion for geography. Even at a very young age. "
" The safety prospects in 'Ka' are the highest in the world. "
" We should never overestimate an audience's culture, but we should never underestimate their intelligence. "
" I'm not good at entertainment. I don't give myself to all the interviews, game shows, or talk shows. "
" In everything I've done, I've always tried to make room for indigenous people, to include them. "
" I can't really define myself as a dramatist or as an actor or as someone who is interested in music. "
" Cirque du Soleil distinguished itself by being a circus with no animals. Before then, circus was partly about showing how man can tame other species. "